Sudima MIQ facility to support Rotorua community during Omicron outbreak

Published: 21 March 2022

The last remaining MIQ facility in Rotorua is to be used to support the community during the current Omicron outbreak. The Sudima Rotorua Managed Isolation Facility will be available to support community cases from Tuesday 22 March 2022 until the end of May.

Head of MIQ Operations Commodore Melissa Ross said, while MIQ is winding down, it still has a role to play.

“As announced by the COVID-19 Response Minister earlier this month, MIQ has begun to scale down its operations as international travel starts back up. By the end of June, 28 of the current 32 MIQ facilities across the country will leave the MIQ network and return to being hotels,” Commodore Ross said.

“There were 3 MIQ facilities in Rotorua, the Rydges and Ibis will no longer be part of the MIQ network. They are among 20 facilities for whom the decommissioning process is underway. 

“While this process is occurring, there is still a need for us to provide managed isolation and quarantine for community cases and special groups, and these will be provided by a smaller network of 12 facilities for the next few months. The Sudima Rotorua is one of these facilities. 

“Rotorua has done an excellent job over the past 21 months operating the MIQ facilities and collectively Te Arawa, Lakes DHB, Toi Te Ora & MIQ are fully committed to continuing to work together to support the community through the Omicron outbreak

“Iwi have been key partners in this. We have been working with representatives from Te Arawa for the duration of MIQ in Rotorua and it was their request that changes be made to MIQ in Rotorua so community cases can be supported. Previously, all facilities in Rotorua were only used for people who had just come into New Zealand across the border,” she said. 

Monty Morrison, Te Arawa MIQ Representative and Co-Chair, Regional Care in the Community All agency Covid/Omicron Response group said, “Te Arawa is grateful for the Ministers and Government’s positive response to our request for assistance in helping us in our time of need. Thank you also to the MBIE Leadership Team in working with urgency to make this a reality.” 

The Medical Officer of Health at Toi Te Ora Public Health, Dr Neil de Wet, said having the ability for community cases to be supported at the Sudima Managed Isolation Facility is an important step in managing the current response to the Omicron variant of COVID-19. 

“Our community needs as many different accommodation options as possible for people who get COVID-19.  There are many reasons not everyone is able to safely isolate at home.  Adding the Sudima Hotel to the options is extremely helpful,” Dr de Wet said.

Lakes DHB chief executive, Nick Saville-Wood says having space at the Sudima Managed Isolation Facility will help meet the increasing need of whānau in the rohe requiring alternative accommodation to safely isolate.

“It will also be beneficial for those who may have any underlying health issues to be supported by our clinical staff and be in close proximity to Rotorua Hospital,” he said.

The Sudima facility will have around 95 rooms available for community support and will be staffed by Lakes DHB registered nurses, health care assistants, a welfare co-ordinator and clinical nurse managers along with MBIE MIQ security and management staff plus hotel staff. 

People from the community can be referred to the Sudima Managed Isolation Facility via the Rotorua Covid Response Hub who triage cases based on need.