Waikato MIQ hotel to become facility for local cases

Source: 1News

One of three managed isolation facilities in the Waikato will become a quarantine facility for local community cases from Monday.

The Distinction Hamilton hotel's transition follows the emergence of further Covid-19 cases in the region, and will enable positive cases from the community outbreak to go into a local quarantine facility, Joint Head of Managed Isolation and Quarantine, Brigadier Rose King, said in a statement.

It comes after a further three Covid cases were reported in Waikato on Sunday afternoon, bringing the number of positive cases in the region to 25.

The move is a "temporary measure that will remain in place as long as it is needed to support the health response", King said.

"We are making this change in partnership with the people of Tainui waka and other partner agencies who are supportive of local people being cared for locally."

The change means the region will have 110 quarantine rooms available for local community cases, she said.

As part of the move, Distinction Hamilton will now be known as Amohia - Community Isolation Quarantine facility, following the suggestion of Tainui waka iwi.

"This has been endorsed by Kiingi Tuheitia, Pootatau Te Wherowhero VII and is drawn from the King’s tongikura: Amohia ake te ora o te iwi, ka puta ki te wheiao. To protect the wellbeing of our people is paramount."

All staff at the facility are vaccinated and will apply stringent Infection Prevention and Control measures to ensure the safety of people inside and outside the facility, King said.

The facility has also recently completed an upgrade of its ventilation system.

Positive returnee cases identified through regular testing at the two other Hamilton managed isolation facilities - Ibis Tainui and Jet Park Hamilton - will continue to be transported safely and securely to Auckland quarantine facilities.

"The other two Hamilton facilities remain as managed isolation facilities only.

"Everyone has done a great job over the past 16 months operating the Waikato facilities and are fully committed to working together and continuing to keep communities safe."