Health Research Saves Lives!

Ka Whakarauoratia te Hunga e te Rangahau Hauora!

Covid 19

Open letter to all New Zealanders

Zip it, sweetie!

If you were a passenger in a plane that was going through some very rough turbulence, or even free falling with the engines shut down, would you start shouting out to your fellow passengers telling them how you think the pilots should be flying the plane? No. You’d  either zip it or be made to zip it, you’d probably decide to put your trust in the people who are trained to deal with the situation, and hope or pray that you’d survive. The fact the plane is in trouble doesn’t suddenly make you an expert in how to fly planes.

A lot of people on Facebook and other social media platforms have been writing comments criticising the authorities for how they’ve been responding to the Covid 19 crisis here in New Zealand. If you’re one of them you might think you know what you’re talking about, but you don’t and you’re not an instant expert on managing epidemics. Whether we like it or not for the very survival of tens of thousands of us we have to place our trust in the current government, and most importantly the scientists and experts who are advising them. We should all exercise personal responsibility for being positive, for being leaders in our own physical and virtual communities, and for not undermining trust in the scientists and government leaders who are doing their best to navigate us through this.

Unlike those in the freefalling plane we know that the engines will eventually restart and we’ll get through this. We should all be doing what we can to ensure that everybody gets behind the experts and that the engines fire up again as quickly as possible with minimal hospital admissions and loss of life. If you’re not prepared to do this then the least you can do, sweetie, is zip it.

Why have written this now? Because New Zealanders for Health Research has decided that we can be part of the solution to the current crisis by encouraging people to put their trust in science. If we don’t trust the science we won’t heed the warnings. Our health systems will become overwhelmed and tens of thousands of us will die.

24th March 2020


Chris Higgins
Chief Executive | New Zealanders for Health Research

+64 27 292 8433 mobile | [email protected]