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Introducing New General Public Health Measures Under the COVID Safe Framework

31 December 2021 (CKT)

With the opening of the Cook Islands air border opening in a little over three weeks’ time, it is important that the public is informed of the health measures and general public guidelines designed to keep our community safe.

This is the first in a series of releases which will inform the public of the new rules and regulations. These new rules and regulations come into effect on 10 January 2022.

Vaccinated versus unvaccinated access to businesses, events and venues

There will be no entry restrictions to any businesses, events or venues if all the attendees are vaccinated.

Restrictions will apply if there is going to be a mixture of vaccinated and unvaccinated people in attendance at any events or venues or entering any businesses that are defined as HIGH-RISK facilities.

A high-risk facility is one that does not have two-way air ventilation.

Examples of high-risk premises are defined as:

  • premises where a close-proximity business or service is undertaken:
    • a bar or nightclub:
    • an enclosed cafe or restaurant and, if part of a cafe or restaurant is enclosed, the enclosed part:
    • a gym:
    • a cinema:
    • a gallery:
    • a church:
    • a school hall if 100 or more children are expected to be inside the hall at the applicable time:
    • a bank:
    • enclosed retail premises and, if part of retail premises is enclosed, the enclosed part:
    • an enclosed office space open to the public:
    • any other premises specified as high-risk premises by the Secretary under clause 2;

High-risk premises do not include:

  • a supermarket; or
  • a dairy or grocery store; or
  • a pharmacy; or
  • a school or other educational institution; or
  • a petrol station; or
  • a court or tribunal.

The best way to define a high-risk facility is by using the 3 C’s:

  • Closed Spaces
  • Crowded Spaces 
  • Close Contact Settings 

The following restrictions will apply for any high-risk facility. 

  • Limited to 100 persons if a mixture of vaccinated and unvaccinated people are in attendance. 
  • Minimal physical distancing of 1 metre 
  • Face masks to be worn
  • No limit on numbers if all in attendance are vaccinated.

General public health measures

Face masks must be worn in any high-risk facility and on any form of public transportation.

This includes school buses, passenger transfers and aircrafts including domestic or international flights.

Face masks are also encouraged in all other public settings. 

Remember to sign up and tag in wherever you go with CookSafe and CookSafe Plus.

Contact tracing is encouraged at all high-risk facilities, with everyone tagging or manually signing in before entry.

It is important to stay home or self-isolate if you feel unwell. It’s the best way to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

COVID-19 Hotlines

From (insert date) to following COVID-19 Hotlines will be operational in Rarotonga and Aitutaki, these are the numbers to call if you have any queries or are seeking advice regarding COVID-19.

In Rarotonga call: 0800 1888

In Aitutaki, please call: 0800 1222

People in all other islands in the Pa Enua are encouraged to call their island puna or health clinic.

For more information visit:

ENDS: Contact Jaewynn McKay;   +682 55486