Andrew Little, Minister of Health, has announced 300 MIQ rooms per month will be reserved for critical health and disability workers entering New Zealand. This decision is to support the continued flow of critical health workers into the country and reduce pressure on our health and disability workforce.
The Ministry of Health is currently working with MBIE and Immigration New Zealand to stand up a team to manage this process. They expect applications will be processed from the beginning of November 2021 and places available from late November.
Critical health and disability workers will be eligible to access MIQ spots as long as they have proof of employment and the right to enter New Zealand. This will include international health and disability workers entering New Zealand, critical health and disability workers who have been working in New Zealand on a temporary visa, and New Zealand residents and citizens who have left New Zealand temporarily for exceptional circumstances and have been prevented from returning.
Allocations will be made based on a set of weighted criteria, including for example profession, geographical location, rurality, and other factors that consider how essential a role is in maintaining service delivery and how time critical it is for the worker to arrive on the intended travel date. If an applicant is eligible but does not get a space for the preferred period they will be allocated a space at a later time.
A critical health worker is a person who will work in an occupation needed to deliver critical health services in New Zealand.
Occupations needed to deliver critical health services in New Zealand include the following.
Critical health workers may work for one or more of the following: