A warning that New Zealand can't take a "she'll be right" approach to our vaccination rate.
New modelling shows if our vaccination rate reaches the 70s or low 80s, opening borders and lifting restrictions could lead to thousands of deaths.
Tens of thousands of people could also be hospitalised, stretching the health system to its limits.
Canterbury University's Professor Michael Plank told Mike Hosking we must get a vaccination rate in the 90s, to make outbreaks smaller and more manageable.
"It is possible to get there, and certainly we'd have to try and do everything we can to get there. Because that's the way to reduce the health impacts that will come when we open up our borders and we inevitably do start to see outbreaks."