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Novel coronavirus (COVID-19)

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Information and updates about coronavirus in the MidCentral District Health Board region.

Apppointments  MDHB Cases  News and Updates  Testing

CoronavirusCoronaviruses are a group of viruses that cause diseases in mammals, including humans, and birds. In humans, the virus causes respiratory infections, which are typically mild but, in rare cases, can be lethal.

For the latest information and advice please visit the New Zealand Government COVID-19 website:


*** MidCentral DHB COVID-19 UPDATE *** 

For all information about MidCentral DHB cases please visit our Update on COVID-19 cases in MidCentral DHB or the Ministry of Health website.

How to be tested in MidCentral DHB

To be referred to a testing site:
  • Call the dedicated COVID-19 Healthline number on:
    0800 358 5453
  • OR contact your GP by phone. General Practice Teams will also able to refer patients to these sites, if required.
There are five designated testing sites across the MidCentral District’s localities of Palmerston North City, Horowhenua District, Ōtaki, Manawatu District and Tararua District to provide assessment and swabbing for suspected cases of COVID-19. There is a mobile testing unit available to support people who cannot access the testing sites.


MidCentral DHB Visiting Hours

On Wednesday 25 March, New Zealand entered COVID-19 Alert Level Four. From this date, we are implementing a stricter policy regarding visitors to Palmerston North Hospital and the Horowhenua Health Centre.
To keep patients, whanau and staff safe, members of the public will be unable to visit patients at MDHB sites.
In some cases exceptions to this policy will be made on essential and compassionate grounds - for example a parent/guardian who is supporting a child, or a nominated person supporting a terminal patient.
The decision will be made by a lead clinician and the visitor will undergo screening before they enter.

Appointment and procedures during COVID-19

We are currently in the process of determining the impact to our patients for their planned appointments and/or elective surgery. It is likely some patients will need to have their bookings rescheduled due to COVID-19. Please note the following:
  • We are currently assessing the needs of patients on all our lists and will prioritise urgent care first;
  •  If your appointment needs to be deferred, we will be in touch to let you know;
  • If you don’t hear from us, please come to your appointment, as long as you are well;
  • If you are sick, please let us know by contacting us. It is important that you don’t come to hospital if you have an illness that could spread to other patients and our staff.
  • If you have inquiries about whether your appointment or procedure will be affected by the COVID-19 event, please call 0800 256 963. Note: this number is operational between 8am and 5pm Monday to Friday.
  • If you require an appointment with your general practice team, please ensure you call ahead.
Please also make sure you arrange to have your flu vaccination as soon as possible as this will help with you and your family/whanau health, and reduce the pressure on our hospitals and health centres. 



In January 2020, Chinese authorities confirmed a new type of coronavirus, known as COVID-19, which affects the respiratory system. The Ministry of Health (MoH) is closely monitoring the situation with guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO). Within New Zealand, District Health Boards (DHBs), including MidCentral DHB, are working closely with the MoH to monitor and prepare for the possibility of coronavirus reaching our shores.
More information, including signs and symptoms, advice for travellers and status updates is available from the New Zealand COVID-19MoH and WHO websites, and the MidCentral DHB News site.

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Most documents are available in Acrobat (PDF) format. Some documents are also available in other formats (doc, xls, html etc.) or as a printed version (hard copy). Please note, due to cost, a different format or printed version may not be available.

To request a different format or printed version, please contact the MidCentral District Health Board Communications Unit.

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