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- 100 Public Health
- 68.3 Financial
- 100 Fact-Based
New Zealand has had very strong policy, particularly its reliance on science and facts, and its very strong financial response.
New Zealand scored highly on most measures but has a low number of hospital beds and is a country of average wealth.
- Debt/GDP ratio 29.8%
- GDP/capita $42,045
- Gini coefficient (out of 100) NO DATA
- Infant mortality rate (out of 1,000 live births) 5
- Healthcare access score (out of 100) 86.2
- Hospital beds/1,000 People 19.7
Government ResponseSelect a data point for more information
(Data points represent policy level as of Sep 1.)
Public Health Directives
New Zealand has had very strong public health policy, and it scored well in most public health areas, except in testing and emergency healthcare funds.
- Stay at home order 0
- Public gathering restrictions 4
- School closings 0
- Public event cancellations 2
- Testing policy 2
- Emergency healthcare investments/capita $61.59
- Travel restrictions 4
- Tests/1,000 people 157.2
- Contact tracing 2
Despite a small stimulus package and limited debt relief, New Zealand had a relatively strong financial response to COVID-19, owing heavily to its very generous income support for workers.
- Financial stimulus as share of GDP 10.8%
- Income support 2
- Debt forebearance 2
New Zealand’s government is very strong in this category, as it has not engaged in misinformation or limited press freedom in response to COVID-19.
- Reliance on science/fact based information 0
- Press freedom 0
COVID-19 Status as of Sep 1
New Zealand is among the best performers in this category, consistently scoring very strongly in all subcategories, likely attributable to its very low positivity rate and very strong policy score.
- Total deaths 22
- Death rate per 100K 4.6
- Total cases 1,401
- Cases per 100K 291
- Percent of positive tests 0.1
- Change in positivity rates +0.1
|1||May 13||Social distancing requirements are lifted||0.27|
|2||May 18||Schools reopen||0.06|
|3||May 21||Bars reopen||0.18|
|4||Jun 08||Restrictions on personal movements, gathering, workplaces, and services are lifted||0.00|
|5||Aug 12||Country moves to Alert Level 2 for 3 days following several new cases||0.03|
- Coronavirus pushes elections back: Prime Minister Arden pushed back elections by a month due to COVID-19. Read More
- Trying to track down new cluster of cases: New Zealand is working hard to find the source of a new cluster of COVID-19 cases, with some thinking it may have come from a cold-storage facility. Read More
- Aggressive lockdown contained virus: New Zealand's success in containing coronavirus has been praised around the world, but its tactics are difficult for most other countries to replicate. An island nation, it was able to completely close its external borders and refuse entry to travellers, while its low population density has been key to avoiding community spread. Read More
- Health minister breaks lockdown: In early July, New Zealand's Health Minister resigned after breaking lockdown rules twice to go hiking and to the beach, and due to a failure in the country's strict border management policy. Two citizens returning to the country were allowed to leave quarantine without being tested and were later found to have coronavirus. Read More
- Debate over lockdown's end: While the country's strict border closure is undoubtedly a major part of its coronavirus success, prominent voices including former Prime Minister Helen Clark called on the government to develop a plan that would enable New Zealand to keep cases low while opening up to trade, tourism and business travel in the coming months. Read More
Compared with Other Island Nations
Per 1M 7,417
Indonesia performs relatively strongly in the Index, with consistent scores across all categories.
Per 1M 10
Iceland scores near the median, having strong public communications and testing but moderate interventions otherwise.
Per 1M 1,296
Japan has a very strong overall score, driven by its generous financial response and a reliance on facts, although its public health policy is slightly below the median.
Per 1M 7
Taiwan has a relatively strong overall policy score, but does not score as highly as expected due to a lack of lockdown, minimal stimulus, and weak support for debt relief. Given data limitations, the score likely underestimates Taiwan’s very strong contact-tracing policy, which is so advanced that it may have diminished the need for other policy responses.
Further Reading From Foreign Policy
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Statistics and government response factors available on each country profile include:
- Debt to GDP ratio
- Infant mortality rates
- Hospital beds per 1,000 people
- Gini coefficients measuring inequality
- Health access and quality
COVID-19 Public Health Directives:
- Stay-at home orders
- School-closing policy
- Public-gathering restrictions
- Cancellation of public events
- Testing policy and rates per 1,000 people
- Emergency healthcare spending per capita
- Travel restrictions
- Contact tracing
COVID-19 Financial Response:
- Stimulus package as a share of GDP
- Income support
- Instances of misinformation by leadership
- Limitations on press freedom, censorship
Current/Historic In-Country COVID-19 Status:
- Death rates per 1 million
- Case rates per 1 million