All hospital visitors are recommended to wear a medical face mask. Expand this message for information about visiting hospital.

Last updated:
13 March 2023


Mask exemptions accepted for people seeking treatment
Any member of the public with a mask exemption is welcome in all our facilities when attending to receive health care and *treatment. Please show your mask exemption card and appointment letter to staff at the entrance.

*Treatment includes: coming into the Emergency Department, outpatient appointments,  surgery or a procedure.

Some visitor restrictions for all Te Whatu Ora Waitaha Canterbury hospitals and health facilities remain in place, but we have relaxed others.

There is still a heightened risk to vulnerable people in hospital and so we recommend all people wear a mask when visiting any of our facilities and follow other advice designed to keep patients, staff and  visitors safe.

Kia whakahaumaru te whānau, me ngā iwi katoa – this is to keep everybody safe:

  • Visitors or support people must not visit our facilities if they are unwell. Do not visit if you have recently tested positive for COVID-19 and haven’t completed your isolation period.
  • Patients may have more than one visitor, except in some situations such as multi-bed rooms where it can cause overcrowding.
  • Surgical/medical masks are recommended be worn at all sites. Masks will be provided if you don’t have one.
  • For Specialist Mental Health Services everyone is strongly encouraged to wear a face mask in all inpatient areas and areas where consumers are receiving care (i.e. community appointments, home-visits, transporting people). Discretion may be applied in cases where masks impair your ability to communicate effectively.
  • Visitors must not eat or drink in multibed rooms because of the increased risk when multiple people remove their face mask in the same space.
  • Hand sanitiser is available and must be used.

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.

Visiting patients with COVID-19

  • People can visit patients who have COVID-19 but they must wear an N95 mask – this will be provided if you don’t have one.
  • Other methods of communication will be facilitated e.g. phone, Facetime, Zoom, WhatsApp etc where visits aren’t possible.

All of our Hospitals

Visiting hours for our hospitals have returned to pre COVID-19 hours with the exception of Christchurch Women’s Hospital.

All visitors are recommended to wear a medical face mask.

Parents/caregivers are able to be with their child in hospital and visitors are now allowed, except for the Children’s Haematology and Oncology Day stay where just one parent/caregiver is able to attend their appointment with their child. Exceptions by special arrangement only.

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

More COVID-19 information


About accessibility 

This page provides information about the accessibility of the Te Whatu Ora – Health New Zealand Waitaha Canterbury public website, it also provides information about health services associated with accessibility and disability.

Services and information for people with disability

A list of web pages with information about services that relate to disability or accessibility is below. Over time this page will be expanded to provide a more comprehensive range of Canterbury health service information for people living with a disability.

Page / Document Description
Getting ready – Being prepared – Disability Supplement Information to assist people living with a disability, or someone with a long term health condition to plan for COVID-19 in the community.
COVID-19 care in the community – Be COVID-Ready – practical things you can do now

If you are a person living with a disability, let the public health team know (they will have contacted you after your positive test was confirmed) and they will make sure you have the help you need to get you through.

There is lots of information and resources in alternative formats and languages other than English linked from the Unite Against COVID-19 homepage. Click on the languages button top right on the Unite Against COVID-19 website for information in other languages and formats or chose one of these:

COVID-19 information in New Zealand Sign Language

COVID-19 information in Easy Read

COVID-19 information in Large Print and Audio

COVID-19 information – audio description

COVID-19 information in Braille

If you have specific health needs, also let the public health team know what you need.

Information about using health services during COVID-19 Under all COVID-19 Alert Levels where hospital visitor restrictions are in place, an exception will be made for people living with disabilities who are in hospital or have to attend an outpatient appointment– where they need a support person to ensure equitable access to health services. For example a sign language interpreter, support person for someone with a learning disability, or someone to assist with mobility is allowed in addition to that person’s permitted visitor/s.
Disability / Mobility car parks at Christchurch Hospital Campus If you are a mobility parking permit holder you can park in one of the designated mobility car parking spaces indicated by a wheelchair icon on the mobility car parking map.
Contacting us – I am deaf / have hearing loss. How can I contact you? NZ Relay is a telecommunications service for people who are deaf, hearing-impaired, deaf-blind, or speech-impaired. All NZ Relay calls to us are confidential, your conversation and information is are kept private and secure.
Disability Steering Group (DSG) The purpose of this group is to ensure people living with disabilities in the district have the health services they need, and feel included in decisions about their health.
Health Disability Action Plan (PDF, 600KB) The DSG has the Health Disability Action Plan as the focus for its work. The Plan identifies short-term goals to be achieved in the first two years, and longer-term goals over the ten year lifespan of the Plan.

What is an accessible website?

An accessible website is one that accommodates a full range of people, removing barriers so that a website can be used by anyone, regardless of disability.

This website aims to achieve and maintain very good website accessibility, delivering as many WAI Level AA and AAA guidelines as achievable.

In February 2021 this website passed a WCAG 2 AA and WCAG 2 AAA check using the website accessibility testing tool Although compliance with WCAG guidelines is not the only indicator of website accessibility, it does confirm that this website has a good basic level of accessibility and has been built in a professional and considerate way.

WCAG 2.0 (Level AA)

WCAG 2.0 (Level AAA)

Due to the complexity and changing nature of accessibility compliance, it is challenging to consistently maintain 100% compliance with all accessibility best practices. However, as part of our commitment to meet the objectives of the Disability Action Plan we do plan to continuously improve the accessibility of our website, so that Canterbury health services are accessible to all people.

Help to use websites 

You can use your browser and operating system settings to change how you view websites that you visit. For advice, we recommend visiting the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative's page on this topic.

Page last updated: 30 January 2023

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