As at 22 March 2020, health services at Rarotonga Hospital have been reoriented to prepare to receive COVID-19 patients.
The isolation ward was established in October 2019 in preparation for potential measles cases to the Cook Islands. We did not receive measles however the ward has been set up to receive other infectious diseases such as COVID-19.
We have established two negative pressure rooms (ten beds total) at the hospital to ensure infectious germs are filtered out so it does not spread via the ventilation system. These rooms will not only be useful for COVID-19, should the virus get here, but also other infectious diseases such as tuberculosis and measles.
Our health system does not have longer term intensive care capability in country. However we have a high dependency unit with three beds. This is a specialist ward designed to provide treatment and monitoring for people who are critically ill or unstable condition.