It's impossible to ignore the threat of coronavirus now that one case was confirmed in Auckland on Friday and one person has died in Australia from the deadly disease.
Closer to home yesterday morning the Voyager of the Seas cruise ship docked in Tauranga after being diverted from Vanuatu.
Health officials have come out in force to reassure the public that the vessel poses no risk of coronavirus despite seven people onboard showing signs of influenza or gastroenteritis.
I can understand the subsequent backlash on social media after it emerged that passengers had been allowed to disembark and wander the streets.
It's a difficult call, especially when 270 cruise ships come to the city every year. I agree with mayor Tenby Powell that the community needs to remain calm and not panic.
The Prime Minister said she is considering further travel restrictions from coronavirus ''hotspots'' as the Government travel bans widen. There has been a ban from people travelling from mainland China since February 2.
Jacinda Ardern has also called upon the media to report as much factual information as possible which I support. This includes washing your hands frequently with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds, avoiding close contact with people with cold- or flu-like illnesses and putting into context the 87,470 confirmed worldwide cases and 2930 deaths reported yesterday morning.
But I think we also have to keep it real. This is a global deadly virus and the reaction from some concerned Kiwis is understandable.
Tauranga cruise ships pull out all the stops for coronavirus spread
Coronavirus: Bay of Plenty Chinese restaurant plates empty as customers drop off
Coronavirus - What does it mean for Bay of Plenty people?
Supermarkets have been inundated with people stocking up on bleach, hand sanitisers, toilet paper and water over the weekend.
It reminds me of the time my mother was caught up in the wave of hysteria caused by the bird flu and she ferreted away hundreds of panadol tablets alongside other basic household necessities.
On the flip side, airlines are also offering bargain basement priced flights to national and international destinations while tourism operators in the Bay have noticed a downturn in business.
In my view, we need to be cautious but it is important we take our lead from the health professionals who are on the frontline and not get swept into ill-informed hysteria.