How contact tracing works

Information on contact tracing, how to support contact tracing if you test positive, and getting alerts from the NZ COVID Tracer app.

What contact tracing is

If you test positive for COVID-19, you will need to notify people you have been in close contact with that you have tested positive. This includes your workplace or school.

The Ministry of Health also uses this information to notify people in vulnerable communities who may have been exposed to the virus. This process is called contact tracing.

If you test positive

If you test positive for COVID-19 you will need to share details of where you have been recently and who you have seen. You can share this with the Ministry of Health securely online through a contact tracing form. This is instead of a case interview over the phone.

If you have a valid mobile phone number, you will get a text message with a link and access code to complete this form.

The COVID-19 contact tracing form lets you share:

  • symptoms you have
  • any underlying health conditions you may have
  • details of your Household Contacts
  • details of any high-risk locations you have visited
  • any welfare needs you may have.

How to use the contact tracing form

If you use the NZ COVID Tracer app and Bluetooth tracing, you can upload your digital diary and Bluetooth data to the contact tracing form. You will get instructions on how to do this when you complete the form.

If you need help with the form

If you need help completing the form, you can email or call 0800 11 77 88.

Alerts from the NZ COVID Tracer app

If you have been close to someone with COVID-19, you may get an orange alert on your NZ COVID Tracer app.

If you get an alert, you should follow the advice on the alert.

If you test positive for COVID-19, you will have the option to upload your Bluetooth data on the contact tracing form.

Bluetooth alerts are anonymous. If you receive an alert, you will not know who sent the alert, or where you came into contact with the positive case.

NZ COVID Tracer app

Make contact tracing easier

You can help make contact tracing easier for health officials by continuing to keep a record of where you go and who you meet. 

Keep track of where you have been

High-risk locations

It is important to keep a record of any high risk locations you visit — for example, a hospital or aged care facility, so if you or someone in your household tests positive, contact tracers can focus on reducing the spread in our most vulnerable communities and populations.

For each high-risk location, you will need to provide:

  • the type of activity or place
  • a name of the place or activity
  • an address
  • your approximate arrival and departure time.

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