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Govt to tighten rules around logging of MIQ worker testing

Rules are being tightened around the logging of MIQ staff Covid-19 testing, after officials today were unable to report when a worker last had a test, prior to their positive Covid-19 result last week. 

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It comes after officials were unable to report when a worker last had a test, prior to a positive result. Source: 1 NEWS

Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins is expecting to sign a new health order making it compulsory for employers of managed isolation and quarantine workers to log when their workers have been tested. 

It came after Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield revealed today an investigation was launched as one of the latest Covid-19 cases, Case B, who works at the Grand Millennium had not been tested since at least mid-March, prior to routine testing last Tuesday, April 6. 

When asked for the exact date, MIQ's Brigadier Jim Bliss was not able to tell media when Case B's last test prior to April 6 took place. 

Managed isolation workers already need to be tested every 14 days and workers in quarantine facilities are tested every week.

Chris Hipkins - file. Source: 1 NEWS

"About 12,000 active border workers are on the register," Hipkins said today.

"We're monitoring those 12,000 people, they're being tested, they're test results are being automatically linked back into the register, we can tell when they've been tested and when they haven't. 

"There is an additional group of workers where the employers are not using the register, they are keeping their own records. I am making the use of the register compulsory so this will ultimately address this data issue."

He was expecting the final order to come in the next 24 hours. "Then it will be signed and that notification will go out."

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said there was a legal requirement for MIQ employers to test their employees. She said the consequences for those that didn't was "fines and reputational damage".