ORANGE

Hospital visitors don’t need a Vaccine Pass, but must wear a surgical/medical paper mask. Fabric face coverings are no longer acceptable. See our COVID-19 pages for visiting guidelines, COVID-19 tests current case numbers in regions of Canterbury and care in the community advice. See www.vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz for info about vaccinations.

We are at ORANGE according to the NZ COVID-19 Protection Framework

Last updated:
19 April 2022

For visitors to all facilities effective from Tuesday 19 April 2022

With the change to the ORANGE Traffic Light setting, Canterbury DHB is easing its visitor policy in recognition of the fact we have passed the peak of the current Omicron outbreak and case numbers are slowly reducing.

The following visitor restrictions are now in place for all Canterbury DHB hospitals and health facilities:

  • One adult visitor may be accompanied by no more than one child over the age of 12 per patient in the hospital at any given time, except where stated otherwise in the ‘exceptions’ section below.  No children under 12 and those 12 and over must be accompanied by an adult and wear a medical mask.
  • Visitors or support people should not visit our facilities if they are unwell.
  • Surgical/medical masks must be worn at all times at all Canterbury DHB sites and will be provided if people don’t have them.
  • Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must be used.

By adhering to these conditions, you help keep our patients, staff, other visitors and yourself safe. We thank you in advance for your patience and understanding as our staff work hard to protect and care for some of the most vulnerable in our community.

Exceptions to the ‘one visitor’ policy

  • Exceptions can apply in some circumstances (ie more than one visitor) where a trusted whānau member provides assistance, reassurance and other support for therapeutic care or on compassionate grounds – please talk to the ward’s Charge Nurse to discuss this before you come to hospital to visit. For whānau with an essential support role as a Partner in Care – please check with the ward’s Charge Nurse before you come to hospital to visit
  • People attending Christchurch ED or Ashburton AAU can have one support person with them
  • Women in labour and in the birthing suite can have two support people, and women on the Maternity Ward are allowed one support person for the duration of their stay in our facilities at Christchurch Womens Hospital and other maternity units. Only one support person can be with each woman in the maternity ward, and one support person for maternity clinic appointments, no children are allowed to visit.
  • Parents/caregivers can be with their baby in NICU.
  • Parents/caregivers are able to be with their child in hospital (Except Children’s Haematology and Oncology Day patients where only one parent or caregiver is permitted, following a supervised negative RAT result)
  • Children who are inpatients, one other visitor (other than a parent or caregiver) is able to visit in consultation with the nurse in charge.
  • People requiring support when attending an appointment can have one support person. Please let the relevant service know if you need this so they are able to accommodate your request.

Exceptions for people with disabilities

An exception will be made for people with disabilities who are in hospital or have to attend an outpatient appointment – where they need a support person to access health services. For example, a sign language interpreter, support person for someone with a learning disability, or someone to assist with mobility. The support person is in addition to the one permitted visitor.

Face covering exemption cards

The Exemptions Team at the Ministry of Health is now responsible for processing requests for Face Covering Communication Cards.

Updated information about mask wearing, and how to request an exemption card can now be found here. People unable to request an exemption card online can call 0800 28 29 26 and select option 2, or text 8988

Patients and visitors should also read the additional more detailed visiting guidelines for each specific hospital.

More COVID-19 information

National Bowel Screening Programme

Starting mid-November and over the next two years about 90,000 Canterbury people aged 60 to 74 will be eligible for a free test, as part of the National Bowel Screening Programme.

On or near their birthday, they can expect to receive their testing pack in the mail. People receiving the kits are being asked to “Start a movement that might save your life”.

If you have a birthday on an even date (2, 4, 6 etc - of the month) you will receive a test kit on or near their birthday during the first year.  If you have odd date birthday, your test will arrive in the second year of the programme.

The testing kits are small - just a little bigger than a USB stick, easy to use and designed to detect early signs of bowel cancer. Early detection enables early intervention which gives people who return the test a much better chance of a successful long-term health outcome.

In the first year we expect to detect 100 cancers early and around 1000 pre-cancerous growths.

If you are in this key age band, look out for your test. Acting now could save your life.

Bowel cancer and the screening programme

New Zealand has one of the highest rates of bowel cancer in the world and 1200 people die from this disease each year. It is the second most common cause of death from cancer.

The disease typically affects people over 60 years old, and is more likely to affect men than women. In Maori men it’s the third most common cancer.

Early stage bowel cancer is difficult to detect without screening.

People who are diagnosed with early stage bowel cancer, and who receive treatment early, have a 90 percent chance of long-term survival.

Since it began in New Zealand just over three years ago, the programme has screened more than quarter of a million people and detected more than 700 cancers early enough for successful treatment in 90 percent of cases.

You can reduce your risk of developing bowel cancer by having a healthy diet high in fruit, vegetables and fibre, by exercising regularly and by not smoking.

More information on the National Bowel Screening Programme is available on www.timetoscreen.nz/bowel-screening

Page last updated: 19 January 2021

Is this page useful?