web analytics

Chris Bishop is tilting at Covid windmills

Written By: - Date published: 12:35 pm, May 26th, 2021 - 32 comments
Categories: chris bishop, covid-19, health, national, same old national - Tags:

Right now, in terms of our Covid response, New Zealand is in a unique position.  It has no community spread of Covid and its level of restrictions is the most permissive in the world.

Some of the other nations are not doing so well.

Melbourne has had another outbreak.  Nine cases within three families have appeared within the past couple of days.  And one of the cases attended an AFL game with 23,000 other Victorians.  This is potentially the stuff of nightmares.

Taiwan has dramatically fallen off its perch as having the world’s best response to the virus.  New case numbers have spiked to 400 a day.

Japan is struggling to hold the spread of the virus as the Olympics beckon.

Fiji has had 18 new cases and is also on the verge of losing control.

And another former top performer, Singapore, is also struggling to hold the virus back.

It is clear that unless you are on top of your game, and have a science based approach as well as a bit of luck you will be in trouble.

Some on the right suggest that our position is all to do with luck.  We are an island nation removed from the rest of the world.  Last time I checked Australia, Japan, Fiji and Taiwan were also island nations.  Geographic remoteness helps but clearly more than that is required.

Our continuing good fortune is shown in this stringency index graph.

And it is also shown in this new confirmed cases graph.

All of our cases from the past few months have been located in quarantine.

So what does an opposition do?

How about complaining that the Government is trying to squeeze too many vaccines out of a vial.  From TVNZ:

The Ministry of Health is being questioned over whether it’s following official guidelines with the Covid-19 vaccine.Some vaccinators have been able to extract more than the recommended number of doses from a single vial.

Pfizer guidelines state that each vial contains up to six doses and each dose must contain 0.3 millilitres of the vaccine.

Any leftover less than that should be discarded.

It also notes not to mix remaining vaccine from multiple vials .

However, some vaccinators are getting a full extra dose with the use of a specific needle.

“Those new needles have allowed us to get in some cases seven doses out of each vial which is great, it means we can stretch them even further,” Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield says.

But Bish is clearly happy to take on the person most influential in getting us to our current situation:

National questions whether that goes beyond what’s been approved.

“The issue here is that Pfizer’s official recommendation is to take five or six doses only, if it’s technically possible to take seven then Pfizer should say so,” National’s Covid-19 response spokesperson Chris Bishop says.

“The concern with getting seven is that there may be some people who haven’t got the exact right amount of dosage that they’re meant to get,” Bishop said.

I would be happy to leave this one to the experts.  They have managed things well so far despite everything the opposition has thrown at them.

32 comments on “Chris Bishop is tilting at Covid windmills ”

  1. Pete 1

    Bishop is just trying to make out he's relevant. The funny thing is for him to be on about trying to get too many vaccines out of a vial.

    Is that a case of a useless prick complaining about useful pricks?😊

    • mac1 1.1

      He's trying to get under the government's skin but he'll have to try another vein as his needle is, to put it bluntly, not even superficial………

  2. Patricia Bremner 2

    Scary though about the virus in Victoria, and here is hoping those coming to NZ do watch their health and react quickly. Let us hope no asymptomatic cases come over to ski.

  3. Tiger Mountain 3

    NZ National has a vaccine specialist as well as a General Practitioner in their Parliamentary ranks?

    The main element of luck or good fortune NZ has had so far during COVID–is surely that National was not, and is not, the Government!

    Going by various media statements from the Nats the country closed borders too soon, not soon enough, Travel bubbles should have started sooner, foreign students admitted sooner with their MI conducted on campus…migrant workers admitted sooner etc.

    Many more than 26 New Zealanders would likely have died to date from COVID if National’s more permissive line on borders, lockdowns, isolation and mask wearing had prevailed.

  4. Incognito 4

    • gsays 4.1

      I have to admit to a degree of surprise last night when I learnt that there are 4/5/6 or 7 doses in each vial.

      Not sure why, but I figured it would be one dose, one vial.

      • Incognito 4.1.1

        Nope, the manufacturer’s label says five doses. There was some confusion whether this meant that the left over needed to be discarded but FDA (and others) cleared that up with the manufacturer (see Tweet). Under certain circumstances, it is possible to get seven full doses from one vial. Each shot needs to be 0.3 mL (30 µg) and the total volume is ca. 2.25 mL, which leaves a total unused/dead volume of 0.15 mL in the vial, needles & syringes, which is tight and supa economical/efficient.

  5. Treetop 5

    Has a 6th or 7th vial dose been checked for efficacy compared to a vial 5th dose?

    • Incognito 5.1

      Unnecessary, as they all come from the same solution in the vial. As long as the vial is not left sitting around on the table but used up promptly, all shots should be equally effective. In any case, you get two shots 😉

    • Sabine 5.2

      The whole world has been pulling all the doses they could and administered them without a problem so far. It has been known since last year that one can with the right needle extract at least an extra dose.

  6. McFlock 6

    Chris Bishop wants to be able to complain that Pfizer are short-serving the government because you can only get six doses from a vial if you use a special needle…

  7. nic181 7

    Chris Bishop is full of it. He rates his own importance above any commonsense!

  8. Muttonbird 9

    Remember that time Chris Bishop broke two MIQ returnees out of isolation so they could drive all over the country and potentially infect others?

  9. Tricledrown 10

    National continuously crying wolf looses what little traction they had.most people roll their eyes and think what a bunch of complete dicks.

    [deleted spurious “k” from user name again]

  10. “Some on the right suggest that our position is all to do with luck. We are an island nation removed from the rest of the world. Last time I checked Australia, Japan, Fiji and Taiwan were also island nations.”

    Britain is an island….127,000 deaths so far.

  11. AB 12

    Everything Bishop does is in bad faith. The goal is to discredit the government for something/anything (exactly what doesn't matter) so the Nats can get back onto the Treasury benches and let the looting of the public domain for private profit resume.

  12. Enough is Enough 13

    I was just listeing to the acting Premier in Victoria announcing the new 7 day lockdown. He mentioned his frustration over the speed (or lack thereof) of the vaccine rollout over there, for the very obvious reason that lockdowns will continue until the rollout is complete.

    We are in the same place where everyday its a fingers crossed day that this thing doesn't leak out again.

    For those who don't care that our vaccine rollout is slow, just look over at Victoria. With it being likely we are probably 12 months away from reaching the 70% vaccinated rate, it almost inevitable we will have the same misfortune at some point.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 13.1

      The outbreak in Melbourne is a worry, but the Victorian government knows what to do.

      Covid-19 vaccine rollout in NZ is exceeding DHB targets, and that's running vaccine stocks low. Our Gummit could over-promise, but how/who would that help?

      Government above Covid-19 vaccine roll-out target, but delays loom for group 4
      Most district health boards continue to exceed their targets for the Covid-19 vaccine roll-out, with Canterbury 29 per cent over its goal and Nelson-Marlborough and Bay of Plenty beating it by 60 per cent.

      New Zealand has now administered more than half a million Covid-19 vaccine doses, and remains at eight per cent above its target.

      Despite this, the vaccine roll-out for group four, the general population, has been moved to the end of July, the Ministry of Health said, a delay of a number of weeks from the initial intention.


      • Enough is Enough 13.1.1

        The speed is a non-issue at the moment.

        Hopefully we don't need to go into another lockdown, but if we do, the speed of that rollout will certainly become an issue.

        Self determined low targets rates won't really matter if that scenrio arises.

        • Drowsy M. Kram

          Speed of rollout depends on vaccine supply. Since no political party or agency in NZ can 'magic up' more doses of pandemic vaccines we're stuck with what we can get, similar to all countries (small and big) that can't mass-manufacture these vaccines.

          I'd be interested to know what resources our Government is allocating to acquiring vaccine doses more rapidly, always remembering that the need in some countries is (much) greater and more urgent than our own.


          • Enough is Enough

            always remembering that the need in some countries is (much) greater and more urgent than our own

            Do you think that is a consideration for the Ministry of Health when procuring the vacinne?

            Its a convenient political line that I have heard Minsters use quite often, but do you think our government is seriously saying internally,

            "hey, we will not will not rush the rollout, we will keep the borders closed for another 12 months, and run the risk of further hard lockdowns, because there are countries worse off than us "

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Do you think that is a consideration for the Ministry of Health when procuring the vacinne?

              At a guess, it seems unlikely. I am, however, certain that "the need in some countries is (much) greater and more urgent than our own." Tbh, I'd be surprised if any opposition ACT or National party MPs used that "political line" – it’s an inconvenient truth (for them) that NZ once again tops Bloomberg’s Covid Resilience Ranking.


              Btw, what's the source of your "hey, we will not rush the rollout…" quote? I agree with not rushing the rollout ('haste makes waste'), and with the use of prudent travel restrictions to minimise the chance of a domestic lockdown.

              Rates of COVID-19 vaccination are determined by vaccine availability – if Seymour or Bishop have a plan to increase vaccine availabilty for NZers then please stop yapping and tell us, but I'm not holding my breath.


Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Joint statement: Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand Foreign Minister Consultations
    Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong welcomed Aotearoa New Zealand's Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon Nanaia Mahuta to Canberra today for biannual Australia – Aotearoa New Zealand Foreign Minister Consultations. The Ministers acknowledged the unique strength of the relationship between Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand, reaffirmed the shared ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Funding boost for kaupapa Māori response to homelessness
    Associate Minister of Housing (Homelessness) Marama Davidson has announced a significant funding boost today for kaupapa Māori approaches that support whānau into housing. $24.7 million will be allocated to support the delivery of He Ara Hiki Mauri – a tangata whenua-led response to homelessness. “Homelessness is not inevitable. By working ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Appointment of Judge of the High Court
    Auckland barrister David Gary Johnstone has been appointed a judge of the High Court, Attorney‑General David Parker announced today. Justice Johnstone graduated from the University of Auckland in 1991 with a BCom/LLB(Hons), and joined Bell Gully as a solicitor, practising in general commercial litigation. During 1993 and 1994 he studied at the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • New mental health facility a step closer for Gisborne
    Health Minister Andrew Little was at Gisborne Hospital today to mark the next step of Te Tairāwhiti’s new Te Whare Awhiora mental health facility build. The Health Minister turned a sod to mark the start of groundworks at the site, in preparation for the placement of a mauri stone. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • More rural broadband for regional communities
      New contracts will improve around 30,000 broadband connections in rural homes and communities Govt on track to see 99.8% of all New Zealanders receive access to improved broadband as a result of various connectivity programmes by the end of 2023, including those targeting rural regions Applications open for one-off ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Tauranga region to benefit from new funding and financing tool
    Tauranga will be the first region to use a new Government tool to raise funding for much-needed infrastructure. A Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) will be used to raise finance from private markets, which is then repaid via the levy on those who benefit from the infrastructure. The finance raised by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • New committee established to drive better public health outcomes
    Some of the country’s most difficult health issues will be tackled by a newly established public health advisory committee, whose members have now been appointed. Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall says the new Public Health Advisory Committee will investigate and help address long-term health challenges facing Aotearoa. “We ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Government and sector back innovative regional and wool projects
    $2.17 million for new food and fibre ventures in Taranaki $2.24m to develop high-value, sustainable cashmere industry $233,000 to prototype an acoustic, knitted textile product from strong wool for high-end commercial and residential interiors.  $530 million co-invested with business through the Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures fund  The Government closes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Statement on the death of Sir Murray Halberg
    New Zealand has lost one our true sporting icons with the passing of Sir Murray Halberg, Grant Robertson, Minister of Sport and Recreation said today. “Sir Murray was an extraordinary athlete. His gold medal in the 5000m at the Rome Olympic Games in 1960 has been immortalised as part of New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ministerial talks in Canberra to progress trans-Tasman relationship
    The importance of cooperation in the Pacific to support the region’s recovery and resilience will be a focus of formal talks in Canberra tomorrow between the Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta and her Australian counterpart Penny Wong. Nanaia Mahuta will meet Senator Wong for the second formal Foreign Ministers’ Consultations following ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Iwi and Government partnership delivers more rental homes for Pāpāmoa whānau
    Associate Minister of Housing (Māori Housing) Peeni Henare attended the official opening of 10 new rental homes built for working whānau of Ngā Pōtiki ā Tamapahore in Pāpāmoa today. “The Bay of Plenty region is one of many regions facing significant housing challenges and this Government is taking action by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government investment to support growth of Māori businesses and jobs in the primary sector
    Total exports by Māori businesses have grown by 38% since 2017 to $872 million, with the majority from the food and fibre sector Launch of Rautaki mo te Taurikura action plan to support the continued growth of Māori food and fibre sector Support for Māori agribusiness innovation and workforce development ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government to address child abuse system failings
    The Government is adopting the majority of recommendations from an independent review into the actions of government agencies leading up to the death of 5-year-old Malachi Subecz, Minister for Children Kelvin Davis announced today. Following Malachi’s murder at the hands of his caregiver in 2021, Dame Karen Poutasi was appointed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • More tools to help Police deal with fleeing drivers
    Increase the maximum driver licence disqualification period for a second offence of failing to stop or remain stopped, from 12 months to between 12 months and 24 months; Amend the Sentencing Act 2002 so that a vehicle can be forfeited on conviction for failing to stop. Offenders could have their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt books solid as global situation worsens
    The Crown accounts are in a solid position thanks to the Government’s careful financial management through a deteriorating global environment. For the four months to the end of October, the Operating Balance before Gains and Losses (OBEGAL) recorded a deficit of $2.8 billion, $274 million lower than forecast at Budget ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Expanded Dental Grants Available From Today
    ·       Increased Special Needs Grants for dental treatment are available to eligible New Zealanders available from today ·       New criteria means more Dental Treatment covered ·       People can now receive more than one grant in a year (any 52-week period), up to the maximum of $1,000 ·       Recent increases to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Exports tracking towards new record high growth
    Primary industry exports to reach new record high of $55 billion in 2023 Forecasts $2.9 billion higher than in June 2022 Tracking strongly towards a 4 per cent increase in the year ending June 2023, despite global downturn New Zealand’s record food and fibre export revenue is projected to reach ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New guidance for climate action at the local level
    The Government has released new guidance to support stronger links between New Zealand’s climate change goals, and local and regional planning. From today, it has become a legal requirement for local governments to consider the Government’s National Adaptation Plan and Emissions Reduction Plan when preparing or changing regional policy statements, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • World-first bedside blood test good for people, good for health system
    A single blood test that can diagnose heart attacks in minutes instead of hours, saving the health system millions of dollars and getting patients treated faster, is being rolled out in New Zealand hospitals, says Health Minister Andrew Little. “This research, led by emergency doctors at Christchurch Hospital, is ground-breaking,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New rongoā workstream announced alongside Therapeutic Products Bill
    A new workstream has been established within government to consider how rongoā might be protected in legislation. This comes as the Therapeutic Products Bill is introduced in Parliament today, Associate Minister for Health (Māori) Hon Peeni Henare said. “Under Te Tiriti o Waitangi, the Crown has an obligation to actively ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Therapeutic Products Bill introduced
    Legislation to modernise the way medicines, medical devices and natural health products are regulated has been introduced in Parliament today. The Therapeutic Products Bill replaces the Medicines Act 1981 and Dietary Supplements Regulations 1985 with a comprehensive regulatory regime that is fit for the future. Health Minister Andrew Little said ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Climate Action Centre to support farmers maintain international edge
    New Climate Action Centre launched to support farmers reduce ag emissions through R&D investment 50:50 joint venture between Government and agribusiness to accelerate product development First Centre projects launched to get farmers the emissions reducing tools sooner Indicative funding commitment rising to $35 million per year by Joint venture partners, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Progress on firearms register and safety authority
    The launch today of a new firearms regulator to ensure the legitimate possession and use of firearms, and an online portal to apply for licences, marks a significant step towards modernisation and improvements in gun safety, Police Minister Chris Hipkins says.     Police is moving from being an administrator of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government sets out next steps for on-farm sequestration strategy
    Government to work with primary sector on developing a sequestration strategy Government confirms today it will bring all scientifically robust forms of sequestration into the Emissions Trading Scheme, starting from 2025. This will be done at full value, rather than at a discount, so farmers can realise the true potential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Prime Minister concludes bilateral talks with Finnish PM
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin have concluded their first in person bilateral meeting in Auckland this morning. The Prime Ministers reiterated how their respective countries shared similar values and reflected on ways to further strengthen the relationship between New Zealand and Finland. “New Zealand and Finland ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Plan to boost value & lift sustainability of NZ forestry sector
    Sector ITP to grow domestic processing and low-carbon wood products Grow the wood processing sector by 3.5 million cubic metres (25%) by 2030 Grow export earnings from value-added wood products by $600 million by 2040 Increase the use of domestic timber in construction by 25% by 2030 The Forestry and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government supports more energy-saving projects to help more Kiwis save money
    17 community energy-saving education projects share $1.7 million Builds on success of previous Government projects that have supported more than 13,000 households and 440 energy education events with more than 80,000 LEDs distributed Helping households to reduce their energy bills and make their homes warmer and more energy-efficient, is the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt funds new 80-bed mental health unit for Canterbury
    The Government has granted final approval for a new 80-bed acute mental health facility at the Hillmorton Hospital campus, Health Minister Andrew Little says. “This is the second stage of Hillmorton’s major infrastructure redevelopment programme and is one of the largest investments ever made in New Zealand’s mental health infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Māori education momentum rolls on with new wharekura
    A new Year 1-13 wharekura will extend Māori Medium Education into Porirua West from 2027, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. “The establishment of Te Kākā Kura o Ngāti Toa Rangatira will over time provide a local option for up to 200 tamariki and rangatahi on the western side ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Easing administrative burden on farmers through new integrated farm planning projects
    37 new investments to simplify planning and reduce paperwork for farmers and growers Targeted projects for Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Taranaki, Gisborne, Hawke’s Bay, Manawatū-Whanganui, West Coast, Canterbury, and Otago Resources, a digital wallet and template tools to help farmers develop and integrate their farm planning. The Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Commerce Commission Chair appointed
    Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Dr David Clark has today announced the appointment of Dr John Small as the new Chair of the Commerce Commission. “Dr Small has made a valuable contribution to a broad range of the Commission’s work in his roles as associate member and member, which he ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Realising housing dreams for the Kāpiti Coast
    Much needed public housing is on the way for the Kāpiti Coast thanks to the Government’s purchase of a large vacant plot of land at 59-69 Raumati Road in Raumati Beach. “This purchase will ultimately mean more families have a place to call home and demonstrates our commitment to resolving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Decarbonisation industry milestone reached in Timaru
    A pioneering boiler conversion project is now up and ready to go, using woodchips to make potato chips, while slashing emissions. “McCain’s newly converted coal boiler will reduce CO2 emissions at its Timaru factory by 95% and is an excellent example of the great climate gains we can achieve through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Fiftieth Anniversary of Diplomatic Relations With China
    Chinese Embassy Reception Te Papa, Wellington   Tēnā koutou katoa, Da jia hao Let me first acknowledge Ambassador Wang Xiaolong, thank you for the invitation this evening, it is a pleasure to be here. I would also like to acknowledge current and former Parliamentary colleagues, as well as members of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt keeps AM on the air in Northland
    Minister of Broadcasting and Media Willie Jackson and Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty today announced a $1.48 million package to fund the repair and replacement of three transmission masts in Northland to ensure AM radio can stay on air in the region. “This funding will secure the reinstatement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Multi million dollar package to tackle retail crime and reoffending
    A multi million dollar package to tackle retail crime and reoffending is the most significant crime prevention financial package in recent memory  New fog cannon subsidy scheme set up. Government to provide $4000 for all small shops and dairies in New Zealand who want a fog cannon installed, with shops ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding boost to support NZ’s game development industry
    New Zealand’s game developers will receive an immediate funding boost to help support the growth of local studios beyond the current Dunedin centre. “New Zealand’s game development sector has been rapidly growing. The latest data from the New Zealand Game Developers Association shows the total revenue for the industry is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • A new strategy for Pacific housing
    New and existing housing initiatives are being brought together to improve home ownership for Pacific people said Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio. Fale mo Aiga: Pacific Housing Strategy and Action Plan 2030, launched today, is the Government’s targeted response to the housing challenges faced by Pacific Aotearoa. Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government takes action on pay parity for healthcare workers
    Thousands of frontline community health workers – including nurses in aged-care facilities - are in for a pay rise as the Labour Government takes action on pay parity in the health sector. “I’m pleased to announce that Cabinet has agreed to on-going funding of $200 million a year so that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • World’s first algae-based local anaesthetic another step closer to reality
    A partnership between the Government and the Cawthron Institute has delivered a breakthrough in the production of a potent microalgal ingredient for the world’s first algae-based pain medication, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced.  “Scientists at Cawthron Institute in Nelson have developed a reliable and commercially scalable method for producing neosaxitoxin, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago