It is with considerable disappointment that the New Zealand College of Midwives Board has made the difficult decision to cancel our forthcoming 16th Biennial National Conference due to be held in Ōtautahi Christchurch between 04 – 06 November.
This decision has been reached due to the following combined concerns:
- We have been notified by Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre (the venue) that, due to work being stopped onsite during the current alert level 4 lockdown, the venue will not be completed in time for the conference.
- The ongoing uncertainty around alert levels, particularly for Auckland midwives who have been carrying a significant burden of lockdown restrictions, means we may not be at an appropriate alert level to convene a conference that will fairly enable all of our members to attend.
- This uncertainty means that even with an alternative venue, the potential for a later cancellation would not provide midwives with adequate time to cancel travel, accommodation and leave arrangements.
The College considered converting to an on line conference but is also conscious of the extra pressure the Covid outbreak has caused to our workforce and the additional stress of providing care during acute midwifery shortages, which have been exacerbated by required stand down (self-isolation) periods.
We know this will be incredibly disappointing for our delegates, speakers and exhibitors who were looking forward to reconnecting and sharing their work with colleagues, but we need to keep each other and our whānau safe.
All those who registered, will receive 100% refund. Please bear with us over the coming weeks, we will be in touch with details regarding refunds and will share our planning for our next biennial Conference dates.
Noho ora mai | Stay well, look after yourself.