ORANGE

Hospital visiting guidelines updated 20 July 2022: Hospital visitors must wear a surgical/medical paper mask. Fabric face coverings are no longer acceptable. See our COVID-19 pages for detailed information about hospital visiting guidelines, COVID-19 tests and care in the community advice. See www.vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz for information about vaccinations.

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

Last updated:
20 July 2022

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.

For visitors to all facilities effective from Wednesday 20 July 2022

With the recent resurgence in cases in Canterbury, largely due to the Omicron BA.5 subvariant we are seeing an increase in demand right across the health system. Presentations to our Christchurch ED and Ashburton’s AAU are higher than ever and admission rates are high, which means we have a shortage of resourced beds.

Recently, we have seen too many unwell people coming to visit someone in hospital and too many that cannot or will not wear a medical mask. This increases the risk to vulnerable people in hospital. For these reasons we need to everything we can to minimise these risks.

We have therefore tightened visitor restrictions for all Te Whatu Ora Waitaha Canterbury hospitals and health facilities.

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

  • One visitor per patient in the hospital at any given time, except where stated otherwise in the ‘exceptions’ section below.
  • No visitors under 16 to any part of our facilities.
  • No visitors to COVID +ve patients other than in exceptional circumstances.
  • No eating or drinking at the bedside or anywhere other than cafes or areas designated for eating/drinking, as taking your mask off puts patients at risk.
  • Visitors or support people must not visit our facilities if they are unwell with cold or flu-like symptoms (even if they have tested negative) or have had a recent tummy bug.
  • Do not visit if you are COVID +ve or a household contact of someone who has tested positive
  • Surgical/medical masks must be worn at all times at all sites and will be provided if people don’t have them. Mask exemptions do not apply in our facilities – people who cannot tolerate a mask cannot visit at this time.
  • Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must be used.

By sticking to the rules above, 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 where trusted whānau members provide 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 – again, 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 named support people + their community LMC/midwife if they have one – for the duration of the birth only. All other women on the Maternity Ward are allowed one support person for the duration of their stay in our facilities at Christchurch Women’s 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 under 16s are allowed to visit or attend appointments.
  • 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).
  • 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.

Visiting patients with COVID-19

  • To avoid them becoming infected with COVID-19 and passing it one, visitors to COVID-19 positive patients will not be allowed except in extenuating circumstances – by prior agreement with the Charge Nurse Manager only, and wearing an N95 mask.
  • Other methods of communication will be facilitated e.g. phone, facetime, zoom etc.

You must NOT visit the hospital if you

  • are a household contact of a COVID-19 positive case
  • are COVID-19 positive
  • Have a cold or flu/COVID-19-like symptoms (even if you are testing negative for COVID-19)

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.

Everyone visiting our facilities must wear a mask, no exceptions

While we appreciate that some people have legitimate reasons for being exempt from wearing a mask and may even have an official card to confirm this, people who cannot or will not wear a mask cannot visit someone in hospital or attend hospital, other than to access healthcare treatment*. This is another measure to minimise the risk to vulnerable patients.

*healthcare treatment includes: Emergency Department care, outpatient appointments, surgery or a procedure. 

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

More COVID-19 information

Health Warning lifted for Algal Bloom in Selwyn (Waikirikiri) River at Glentunnel

Health Warning lifted for Algal Bloom in Selwyn (Waikirikiri) River at Glentunnel - 19 July 2022

Health Warning lifted for Algal Bloom in Selwyn (Waikirikiri) River at Glentunnel – 19 July 2022

Te Mana Ora | Community and Public Health has lifted its algal bloom health warning issued for the Selwyn River (Waikirikiri) at Glentunnel. This was issued on 19/11/2021.

Recent cyanobacteria surveys of the Selwyn River (Waikirikiri) have shown the cover of potentially toxic algae (benthic cyanobacteria) in the river has reduced and is now below levels of concern to public health.

Dr Ramon Pink, Medical Officer of Health of Te Whatu Ora Waitaia | Canterbury, says Environment Canterbury’s monitoring of Selwyn River (Waikirikiri) will resume next summer when there is increased likelihood of cyanobacteria growth.

Facts about cyanobacteria:

  • Appears as dark brown/black mats attached to rocks along the riverbed.
  • A low cover of the algae can occur naturally but can increase rapidly during warmer months. Algal blooms are influenced by a combination of available nutrients in the water and sediments (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), a sustained period of low and stable flows, and favourable weather conditions (e.g. increased temperature, calm days).
  • It often has a strong musty smell and algal toxin concentrations can vary over short periods.
  • Although high river levels will remove the algal bloom, detached mats can accumulate along the shore and increase the risk of exposure to toxins.
  • If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.
  • Although district or city councils may place warning signs, these may not be seen at the numerous river access points, hence the need for people/ dog-walkers to treat every low-flowing river cautiously.

For further details visit: https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Te Mana Ora on (03) 364 1777: https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai: https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

For further information, contact: communications@cdhb.health.nz

Te Whatu Ora – Waitaha Canterbury has announced a redesign for the Healthy Lifestyles programme for our district.

The new Healthy Lifestyles|Pae Ora programme will be provided by Waitaha Primary Health, Tangata Atumotu Trust, Whānau Whanake and Purapura Whetu Trust. Healthy Lifestyles is about supporting our community to achieve improved health and wellbeing and reducing the burden of disease on those with long term health conditions.

Tracey Maisey, Executive Director Planning, Funding and Decision Support, says that changes have been made as a result of a thorough co-design process with the community, and the new services will reflect the findings of that positive engagement.

“This was, for us, a different way of commissioning providers, and one where we listened to consumers and were guided by their feedback,” says Tracey Maisey.

“With the shift to Te Whata Ora – Health New Zealand, this was, for us, an exciting opportunity to work differently with our providers, and their feedback has been instrumental in guiding our approach.

“It became clear that we needed to provide a more holistic, collaborative and culturally responsive whānau/family partnership approach, targeted at our priority populations.” 

Pae Ora ki Waitaha, a working group of the Population and Health Service Level Alliance, held extensive community consultation with our Māori, Pacific, youth, disability, rainbow, older persons and refugee communities, as well as with clinicians across the health system, to understand what was needed in an equitable health system and to determine the principles and criteria needed for the new service.

Te Whatu Ora – Waitaha Canterbury then ran a Request for Proposal process and a new service model was drafted with the providers which will enhance our ability to provide culturally engaging, responsive, accessible and whānau-centred services.

Waitaha Primary Health Chief Executive Bill Eschenbach is delighted to be part of the new Healthy Lifestyles|Pae Ora Service.

“A health assistant will be assigned to a client and will work alongside them and their whānau to set their own goals which will help them to move toward their dreams and aspirations of living a healthy lifestyle.

“Our Whānau Ora approach will support our clients to remove barriers to achieving a healthy lifestyle and achieve sustainable intergenerational change.” 

Karaitiana Tickell, Kaiwhakahaere of the Purapura Whetu Trust, adds that the service aims to unleash the full potential of the whānau who access it.

“We are all excited to work together to provide the best support and encouragement we can which identifies the needs of our clients and is unique to them, as well as being culturally-informed and relevant for the life they lead.”

The new referrals process is currently being finalised with the new providers and further information on making referrals to the new service will be provided to primary care in August through Canterbury HealthPathways. The new providers will be in place by September 2022. 

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Influenza vaccinations now available

Influenza vaccinations now available

Getting a flu jab is your best defence against influenza and 100,000 Cantabrians have now received theirs. If you haven’t got yours, it’s important you get a flu vaccination as soon as you can. 

Influenza is increasing in the community and it can cause serious illness. There may also be higher rates of influenza in New Zealand this winter with our borders reopening. Getting immunised against influenza protects our vulnerable communities, especially young children, older adults and people with chronic health problems, but anyone can become seriously ill from the flu virus.

“We know that people might feel they’ve had a lot of vaccinations lately but please get your flu vaccination as it provides the best protection against influenza, especially if you’re one of the people at greater risk of serious illness if you get the flu,” says Dr Ramon Pink, Canterbury Medical Officer of Health.

“We want to say a big thank you to all of those in our community who have already had their vaccination and now have the best protection against influenza. For many of you, getting your flu vaccination will be free and we really encourage you to get it as soon as possible.”

Currently flu vaccinations are free for pregnant women, those 65 years and older, Māori or Pasifika people 55 and over and people with chronic medical conditions such as respiratory disease, cancer and diabetes – this includes children under 5 years of age. Many workplaces also either hold vaccination clinics or give staff vouchers to get their flu vaccination.

The flu affects the whole body and can last up to a week or more.  As you get older your immune system isn’t as good at protecting you, even if you feel fit and healthy.

“If you have a respiratory illness and test negative for COVID-19 on a Rapid Antigen Test, you could have influenza – please stay at home when you have respiratory symptoms even when it’s not COVID-19. This winter there is the very real possibility of having flu and COVID-19 within a short space of time,” says Dr Pink.

“If you've recently recovered from COVID-19, the flu, or any other illness, you can get your flu jab as soon as you're well. And if you are yet to have your COVID-19 vaccination or booster, you can get it at the same time. There is no need to leave a gap between these vaccinations.”

To prevent the spread of influenza, it is important that people keep up all the good healthy habits we have learnt from COVID-19, like wearing masks, opening windows and doors to increase ventilation where possible and practising good hygiene by regularly and thoroughly washing or sanitising your hands.

It is also important to seek medical advice early if you are concerned about your health, even if you have been seen before. Other serious conditions can also look like the flu, including meningococcal disease.

More information about flu vaccinations can be found here: https://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/conditions-and-treatments/diseases-and-illnesses/influenza/flu-influenza-vaccines.

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For further information, contact: communications@cdhb.health.nz

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Canterbury and West Coast DHBs are preparing for industrial action planned by the PSA

Canterbury and West Coast DHBs are preparing for further planned industrial action by the Public Service Association. The nationwide action involves a full withdrawal of labour for 24 hours from 11.59pm on Sunday 15 May to 11.59pm on Monday 16 May.

This is in addition to the ongoing ‘work to rule’ period between Monday 9 May and Friday 20 May, where staff members of the PSA are instructed by their union:

  • not to work before agreed paid start times
  • not to work after agreed paid start times
  • to stop work to take all the breaks they are entitled to.

In Canterbury 39 professions and over 1500 Public Health, Scientific and Technical staff will be affected by the PSA strike. On the West Coast, 23 professions and more than 120 staff members of PSA union are affected.

Our therapeutic, rehabilitation, laboratory, occupational therapy and diagnostic services as well as other clinical support services and Hauora Māori will be severely impacted during the time of the strike.

However, the industrial action won’t affect COVID-19 testing services and it is really important people who need to get tested on the day of the strike make sure they still do. Likewise, vaccination sites will still be providing COVID-19 vaccinations.

Canterbury and West Coast DHBs Chief Executive, Dr Peter Bramley, says if this industrial action goes ahead as planned it will cause significant disruption to health services across the two DHBs, particularly to lab results which will be delayed as they catch up with the backlog.

“Services such as the Emergency Department at Christchurch Hospital have warned that there will be delays during the period of the strike,” says Peter.

The 24-hour strike will generally affect patient flow, in particular some discharges back to community where physio, social work, occupational therapy and dietitians are often involved.

Where it is appropriate and safe to do so we will discharge patients home ahead of the strike to reduce the pressure on those staff who are working.

A large number of outpatient clinics, community clinics, elective surgery and procedures are likely to have to be deferred on Monday. People will be re-booked to the next available time. If they are not contacted, they can expect their procedure or appointment to go ahead as normal.

“While community collection centres will be open in Canterbury for blood tests, all community collection centres will be closed on the West Coast. Hospital laboratory staff will only be processing urgent inpatient blood tests,” says Peter.

Some of the professions affected in Canterbury and the West Coast are:

  • Anaesthetic Technicians
  • Audiologists
  • Biomedical Technicians
  • Clinical engineering
  • Dental Therapists
  • Dietitians
  • Health Protection Officers
  • Hospital play specialists
  • Kaiāwhina (Allied Health Assistants)
  • Laboratory staff
  • Maori Health staff
  • Newborn Hearing Screeners
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Orthoptists and Optometrists 
  • Pharmacists and Technicians and pharmacy assistants
  • Phlebotomists
  • Physiotherapists
  • Play Specialists
  • Podiatrists 
  • Psychologists
  • Radiology assistants
  • Social Workers
  • Speech-language Therapists
  • Sterile Services staff
  • Technicians (e.g. Neurophysiology, Hyperbaric)

“We respect the right of staff to take industrial action and acknowledge the important role that health workers play in delivering high quality care.

“Our priority, as always, is the safety of patients and we want to reassure our community that you will still receive emergency and urgent care during the strike,” says Peter.

ENDS

In this edition of the CEO Update

Our COVID-19 cases may have peaked, but as we come down the other side of the mountain, we have to accept that we will continue to live with this virus for some time to come. Peter acknowledges the hard work of everyone in the health system during this challenging period as we begin planning for the anticipated winter illnesses that will join COVID-19 in the community – RSV, influenza and other contagious nasties.

Also, in this edition, Peter talks about the transition to HealthNZ and the recent Tāngata Ora 2022 Pulse Check survey. We see the lengths our Community Response Team (CRT) will go to to ensure that our rural communities have access to RATs and farewell a long-serving midwife. 

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (4MB)

CEO Update - Monday 4 April 2022In this edition of the CEO Update

It’s anticipated that after two years of closed borders and very little flu, this year’s flu season could affect large numbers of people.

Peter says he can understand that there may be a feeling of vaccine fatigue, but this single jab is vitally important to protect us all. Canterbury DHB staff can begin receiving their free flu vaccinations from tomorrow with roaming vaccinators on the wards and at clinics. No appointment needed.

Peter also talks about a fantastic new initiative to help keep patients connected with their friends and whanau; he thanks our partners across the Canterbury Health System for their incredible expertise and mahi which has made such a difference to the care of people with COVID-19 and reminds us to think of our Muslim colleagues who have just started the holy month of Ramadan, a special time of worship and reflection.

Also, this week, read about another of our fabulous staff members who has stepped up, and out of her comfort zone, to provide much needed cover on Christchurch Hospital’s main reception, the Return to Work team who are committed to supporting our kaimahi through recovery from COVID-19 and Etu Pasifika which is running a COVID-19 hub from its premises providing support and services to their community.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (4MB)

CEO UpdateIn this edition of the CEO Update

Today Peter reminds us that the best protection for ourselves and our whānau is to be up to date with vaccinations – and that includes a COVID-19 booster. About 105,000 Cantabrians who are eligible are yet to have their booster dose. Having your booster can protect you from serious illness or hospitalisation, so please encourage everyone you know to get theirs.

Peter shares some numbers that reveal the massive response by so many across the Canterbury Health System and there’s a tribute to our highly respected former CEO Gordon Davies who passed away last Tuesday.

Also, this week, we begin the first in a series of stories showcasing staff who are working in redeployed roles, so meet Napat Sirihongthong, a Registered Nurse and Nurse Educator for the Burwood site. Her latest deployment is to the newly-opened Remdesivir clinic at Burwood.

Finally, we get an insight into the roles volunteers are taking on during the pandemic and how virtual ward rounds are keeping senior doctors in touch with their patients during a time of staff shortages due to COVID-19.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (4MB)

CEO Update - Monday 21 March 2022In this edition of the CEO Update

We expect to peak this week in terms of numbers of community cases, with the follow-on of the peak in COVID-19 related hospital admissions expected to occur towards the middle of next week. Remember, whether it’s positive or negative, please report the results of your Rapid Antigen Test. Peter gives a shout out to the many staff who have been deployed to temporary roles to help care for our community at this time, and he also thanks those who are making newcomers welcome. Thank you!

Also this week, there’s a big thumbs up to our staff delivering the vaccination programme with some outstanding results in a survey of those who have been vaccinated, construction work in Parkside, tips for a better night’s sleep and the retirement of two long-serving Ashburton Hospital staff.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (4MB)

CEO UpdateIn this edition of the CEO Update

With Managed Isolation and Quarantine facilities beginning to scale down, Peter especially wants to recognise the skilled health team who helped keep our community COVID-19 free for an extended period of time. They welcomed and looked after more than 35,000 returnees over the past two years and can be proud of the high levels of guest/returnee satisfaction.

Also, in this edition, it will soon be time to get vaccinated against influenza, and Ashburton Hospital Receptionist Anna Glassie shares her personal experience of COVID-19 and has a message about supporting others with the virus.

You can read the Canterbury DHB CEO Update in two different formats:

View on issuu.com Download PDF (4MB)

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Some Canterbury health services are being deferred as DHB staffing impacted by COVID-19

Some Canterbury health services are being deferred as DHB staffing impacted by COVID-19

As the number of active cases of Omicron continues to rise in our community, more Canterbury DHB staff are contracting COVID-19 and having to isolate. Some have COVID, some are household contacts and others need to stay home to look after whānau who have COVID-19. 

Canterbury’s COVID-19 Emergency Coordination Centre Controller, Dr Helen Skinner said as of today, Monday 14 March, we are only going ahead with urgent surgery, such as cancer care, and other acute surgery such as following an accident or major trauma, with only a small volume of planned (elective) surgery and procedures going ahead.

“Some outpatient appointments are also being postponed this week. Many have already been switched to virtual consults and are carried out over the phone or by video call, however we have to postpone more planned in-person appointments this week,” Dr Skinner said.

“Urgent outpatient clinics such as dialysis will continue as will urgent and non-deferrable surgery and medical procedures.

“We apologise in advance to those affected by these changes. Anyone whose surgery or outpatient appointment has to be deferred will be contacted by phone.  Over the past two weeks staff have gone all out to allow us to continue to provide as much planned care as possible, but with so many staff away we are unable to maintain our usual levels of surgery and outpatient appointments.

“If you haven’t been contacted by us, please assume your appointment or surgery is going ahead,” she said.

Dr Skinner said Canterbury DHB was utilising all available staff to cover gaps in rosters. “Clinical and non-clinical staff are needed throughout the system to cover a range of roles. We are also deploying staff to help out in a number of rest homes in Canterbury and on the West Coast to ensure some of our most vulnerable community members are well supported. 

“It is important to note that all emergency and non-deferrable surgery and procedures are still going ahead, and anyone needing urgent and emergency care should continue to call their GP team or Healthline 0800 611 116 for health advice or dial 111 if it’s an emergency. 

“Our hospitals and health centres have the highest level of infection, prevention and control measures in place and we encourage everyone to continue to seek the care they need when they need it.

“Hapū māmā/pregnant people should contact their Lead Maternity Carer if they have concerns or suspect they are in labour.

“Once again, we apologise for the inconvenience and stress of having your surgery or appointment postponed at short notice, and hope people appreciate the need to prioritise all our available people resources to ensure safe care for everyone,” Dr Skinner said.

ENDS

Note to editors – please help us promote this important reminder when you have an opportunity.

Reminder – don’t hesitate to seek advice if you’re concerned about your own or someone else’s health

If you are caring for someone with COVID-19 at home you should call 111 if:

If you’re not sure what to do or how serious things are call the COVID-19 Healthline 0800 358 5453 – someone will take your call 24/7 and advise on whether you should call an ambulance or bring the person into hospital.

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Vaccines

A new waiata has been released to encourage all our whānau to get vaccinated, including their tamariki.

A new waiata has been released to encourage all our whānau to get vaccinated, including their tamariki.

Dr Seán MacPherson, Consultant Haematologist at Canterbury DHB was approached by a colleague who floated an idea about writing a song to encourage families to all get vaccinated including their tamariki. This is not the first time he has written one to promote a health message, so he was on board straight away.

“Songs are a great way to share messages, and we have a great message here. We can all protect each other, our whānau, and tamariki if we get vaccinated,” says Dr Seán MacPherson.

He collaborated with Morehu Solomon (Te Arawa, Ngati Kahungunu, Ngati Porou) who brought his expertise as an educator to the waiata and shared the message in Te Reo Māori.

“E te iwi e whakarongo mai. Kia kaha, kia toa, kia manawanui,” says Morehu Solomon.

“I’m asking everyone to listen, be strong, be firm and be big of heart. We have had it up to here with the virus. We need to get vaccinated against COVID-19 to protect the people we love.”

The New Zealand Army Band stepped in to provide the musical accompaniment and, in collaboration with the Burnham School kapa haka group, produced a video to bring the song to life.

Major Graham Hickman, Director of Music at the New Zealand Army Band, says he is pleased that they could play their part in sharing the message in a creative way.

“We are all part of the team. We want to see New Zealand come out of this pandemic stronger than ever because we know we worked hard to protect each other,” says Major Graham Hickman.

Dr Seán MacPherson asks people to consider their whole family, their colleagues, friends and the wider community.

“I think we all want to do the right thing. Vaccinating against COVID-19 will help minimise the impacts of COVID-19 and reduce hospitalisation so we can continue caring for the people who truly need it the most.”

The song is now published and can be shared via this link: https://fb.watch/bDMLl71bZr/

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

New community Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) pick up point opened in Rolleston

11 April 2022: Please note that the location and hours of this RATs Collection Centre has now changed, please see our RATs collection page for the latest information.

A new community Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) pick up point has opened today at Factory Drive off Iport Drive in the IPort industrial area, in Rolleston.

The current hours of operation are 2pm-6pm Monday to Friday only. *These hours may be subject to change at short notice

“Following a successful soft launch this morning, we are confident that the processes we have in place will make this an easy, quick, pick up point,” says Tracey Maisey, ECC Incident Controller, Canterbury DHB.

“Thank you to the Selwyn District Council for providing this site and continued support. We are continuing to work through the roll out of RAT collection sites.”

Selwyn District Mayor Sam Broughton says that Selwyn District Council is happy to help by providing a Selwyn site which will make it much easier for locals to collect their tests.

“Managing the current Omicron outbreak is a joint effort and it’s great that we can work with the District Health Board to help support our community.”

To help speed things up at all our RAT collection sites please remember to place your order for RATs before heading to a collection site – and have your order number at the ready.

Orders can be made via the online system at https://requestrats.covid19.health.nz/or by free calling 0800 222 478 to request your RAT tests.

  • RATs are free for people with COVID-19 symptoms or who are a household contact or who have been instructed to get tested by a health official.
  • Critical workers who are household contacts
  • Border workers who are required to be tested under the Required Testing Order

  The full list of Community Collection Centres for RATs in Canterbury is on our COVID-19 tests page.

As staffing resources allow, further RAT Collection sites will be set up in other areas.  Please check Healthpoint and the Canterbury DHB website for the latest information on sites and opening times, as they will change over time.

Note that you may need to wait if it’s busy. Our staff are doing their very best to provide RATs to everyone who needs them as quickly as possible. They deserve respect and kindness while they do their work.

REMEMBER TO REPORT ALL YOUR RAT RESULTS

It’s important that you report every RAT result – negative and positive – on My Covid Record website: https://mycovidrecord.health.nz/ as this helps the Ministry of Health understand the size and trends of the outbreak.

If you need a hand or would prefer to record your result over the phone, you can call 0800 222 478. Parents and caregivers can report the results for tamariki/children via the 0800 numbers.  You can ask questions about the process of recording your results by emailing help@mycovidrecord.min.health.nz

The Ministry of Health has produced a video which outlines the process.

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THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Two cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed on the Chatham Islands

Two cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed on the Chatham Islands

Canterbury DHB’s Emergency Coordination Centre Controller, Dr Helen Skinner confirmed this afternoon that two Chatham Island residents have tested positive for COVID-19.

They are isolating and being supported on the Island.

“We encourage anyone who isn’t vaccinated or hasn’t had their booster to get vaccinated as soon as possible – the Chatham Islands Health Centre will be offering vaccinations tomorrow.

Vaccinations will be available from the Chatham Islands Health Centre. Please call to book an appointment – 03 305 0035.

Dr Skinner said the DHB would be distributing RAT tests to all households on the Islands early this week, as a precaution to allow early detection of positive cases.

“We encourage anyone who has symptoms to have a RAT test and report their results to My Covid Record mycovidrecord.health.nz  any positive results should also be reported to the local health centre so that we can support follow up,” Dr Skinner said.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include:

Less common symptoms of COVID-19 may include diarrhoea, headache, muscle aches, nausea, vomiting, malaise, chest pain, abdominal pain, joint pain or confusion/irritability. These almost always occur with one or more of the common symptoms.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

A new RAT collection site will open tomorrow, Monday 7 March

A sixth community Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) pick up point opens tomorrow at 11am at the Christchurch Arena. Entry for RATs pick up is only from the Wrights Road entrance to the Arena. 

From Tuesday the new Christchurch Arena site will be open 7 days a week from 9am – 3pm until further notice.

It’s important that people who need RATs don’t try to enter the new Christchurch Arena collection centre via Wrights Road.  That entrance is only for people coming for vaccinations. You will not be able to access the RAT pick up point from Wrights Road.

To help speed things up at all our RAT collection sites please remember to place your order for RATs before heading to a collection site – and have your order number at the ready.

Orders can be made via the online system at https://requestrats.covid19.health.nzor by free calling 0800 222 478 to request your RAT tests.

  • RATs are free for people with COVID-19 symptoms or who are a household contact or who been instructed to get tested by a healthcare professional
  • Critical workers who are household contacts
  • Border workers who are required to be tested under the Required Testing Order

  The full list of Community Collection Centres for RATs in Canterbury:

  • Wigram COVID-19 Testing & RAT Collection Centre (35 Mustang Avenue, Wigram entry via Sioux Avenue) Drive-through only, open 10am – 3pm 7 days a week.
  • Whānau Ora Covid-19 Testing & RAT Collection Centre (250 Pages Road, Wainoni), open 9am – 3:30pm, 7 days a week.
  • Orchard Road Covid-19 Testing & RAT Collection Centre (174 Orchard Road, Harewood) Open 9am – 4pm, 7 days a week.
  • Waimakariri Covid-19 RAT Collection Centre (Waimakariri Hockey Turf, 291 Coldstream Road, Rangiora) Drive-through only, open 9am -3pm, 7 days a week.
  • Christchurch Arena RAT Collection Centre (opens 11am – 3pm Monday 7 March, then 9am – 3pm daily from Tuesday 8 March until further notice).
  • Ashburton COVID-19 Testing & RAT Collection Centre (48 South Street, Ashburton entry off Cass Street) Open 9.30am – 2.30pm, 7 days a week.

As staffing resources allow, further RAT Collection sites will be set up in other areas.  Please check Healthpoint and the Canterbury DHB website for the latest information on sites and opening times, as they will change over time.

Note that you may need to wait if it’s busy. Our staff are doing their very best to provide RATs to everyone who needs them as quickly as possible. They deserve respect and kindness while they do their work.

REMEMBER TO REPORT ALL YOUR RAT RESULTS

It’s important that you report every RAT result – negative and positive – on My Covid Record website: https://mycovidrecord.health.nz/ as this helps the Ministry of Health understand the size and trends of the outbreak.

If you need a hand or would prefer to record your result over the phone, you can call 0800 222 478. Parents and caregivers can report the results for tamariki/children via the 0800 numbers.  You can ask questions about the process of recording your results by emailing help@mycovidrecord.min.health.nz

The Ministry of Health has produced a video which outlines the process.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Expect delays and changes to DHB services during tomorrow’s planned strike by PSA members

Expect delays and changes to DHB services during tomorrow’s planned strike by PSA members

Patients of Canterbury and West Coast DHBs can expect to see delays and changes to services during this week’s strike by Allied, Public Health, Scientific and Technical Staff who are covered by the PSA union bargaining.

The nationwide action involves a full withdrawal of labour for 24 hours from 6am on Friday 4th March to 6am on Saturday 5th March.

Across the Canterbury DHB, 39 professions and over 1500 staff will be affected. On the West Coast, 23 professions and more than 120 staff are affected. Our therapeutic, rehabilitation, laboratory and diagnostic services as well as other clinical support services and Hauora Māori will be severely impacted during the time of the strike.

If this industrial action goes ahead as planned, it will cause significant disruption to all of our health services in Canterbury, similar to the disruptions we experienced during the last nurses’ strike. This will also impact some services in the days following the strike.

Canterbury and West Coast DHBs Chief Executive Peter Bramley says services such as the Emergency Department at Christchurch Hospital are likely to be impacted by significant delays and elective surgeries have been postponed.

“The strike will affect the time it takes for patients to be seen, assessed and discharged. In particular some discharges back to community where physio, social work, pharmacists, occupational therapy and dietitians are normally involved.

“Where it is appropriate and safe to do so we are discharging patients home ahead of the strike to reduce the pressure on those staff who are working,”.

Many routine outpatient clinics involving allied health staff, community clinics and elective procedures will be deferred. People will be re-booked to the next available time. If they are not contacted, they can expect their procedure or appointment to go ahead as normal. Hospital laboratory staff will only be processing urgent inpatient blood tests.

The strike won’t affect COVID-19 testing services and it is important that people who need to get tested on the day of the strike make sure they still do. Vaccination sites will also still be operating as usual.

Some of the professions affected in Canterbury and the West Coast are:

  • Anaesthetic Technicians
  • Audiologists
  • Biomedical Technicians
  • Dental Therapists
  • Dietitians
  • Hauora Māori
  • Health Promotion Officers
  • Kaiāwhina (Allied Health Assistants and support workers)
  • Laboratory staff
  • Medical Imaging Technologists
  • Newborn Hearing Screeners
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Pharmacists and Technicians
  • Phlebotomists
  • Physiotherapists
  • Play Specialists
  • Podiatrists 
  • Psychologists
  • Social Workers
  • and Speech-language Therapists

“We respect the right of staff to take industrial action and acknowledge the important role that health workers play in delivering high quality care,” says Peter.

“Our priority, as always, is the safety of patients and we want to reassure our community that you will still receive emergency and urgent care during the strike.” 

ENDS

 

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health warning removed for algal bloom at Waiau River at Waiau Township Bridge

A health warning has been issued for algal bloom in the Waikirikiri/Selwyn River

Our Community and Public Health unit has issued a health warning for the Waikirikiri/Selwyn River at Glentunnel.

The warning follows finding moderate to high cover of potentially toxic algae (benthic cyanobacteria) at the site.

People should avoid the area and animals, particularly dogs, should not be allowed near the water until the health warning has been lifted. 

There are also other access points along the Waikirikiri/Selwyn River that may have benthic cyanobacteria present. People are advised to treat every low-flowing river cautiously, check for the presence of benthic cyanobacteria and avoid contact.

Dr Cheryl Brunton, Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, says the algae look like dark brown to black mats and can produce toxins harmful to people and animals.

“Exposure may cause skin rashes, nausea, stomach cramps, tingling and numbness around the mouth and fingertips.

“If you experience any of these symptoms, visit your doctor immediately, also let your doctor know if you’ve had contact with dark brown/black algal mats or water in this area,” Dr Brunton says.

Pets that show signs of illness after coming into contact with algal mats should be taken to a vet immediately.

People and animals should remain out of the waterways until the warnings have been lifted.

Environment Canterbury is monitoring the sites and the public will be advised of any changes in water quality.

Facts about cyanobacteria:

  • Appears as dark brown/black mats attached to rocks along the riverbed.
  • A low cover of the algae can occur naturally but can increase rapidly during warmer months. Algal blooms are influenced by a combination of available nutrients in the water and sediments (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), a sustained period of low and stable flows, and favourable weather conditions (e.g. increased temperature, calm days).
  • It often has a strong musty smell and algal toxin concentrations can vary over short periods.
  • Although high river levels will remove the algal bloom, detached mats can accumulate along the shore and increase the risk of exposure to toxins.
  • If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.
  • Although district or city councils may place warning signs, these may not be seen at the numerous river access points, hence the need for people/ dog-walkers to treat every low-flowing river cautiously.

For further information visit

https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Care in community

Keeping yourself safe with COVID-19 in the Community

There are a number of things you can do to keep yourself safe while out and about in Canterbury.

Mask up – wearing a mask provides great protection. It must cover your nose and mouth. Surgical (paper) masks provide better protection than fabric masks/face coverings.

Scan in – scanning in using the QR code, provides an accurate record of where you’ve been. With blue-tooth turned on, you’ll receive an alert if you’ve been to a location of interest. You can also sign in manually at all locations.

Show your vaccine pass – many businesses and venues require you to show your vaccine pass before you can enter. Have it ready on your phone or printed out.

Stay home if you’re sick –  if you’re not feeling 100% stay home.

Maintain physical distancing – stay at least 1 metre away from people you don’t know.

Get tested – COVID-19 testing is free for anyone with cold or flu like symptoms. No matter how mild it’s important you get tested to identify any cases in the community.

Keep up good hygiene habits – wash and dry your hands frequently or use hand gel; cover coughs and sneezes and dispose of your tissues in the bin and clean or disinfect shared surfaces frequently.

Get vaccinated – whether you need your first, second or booster dose, there are clinics open ready to vaccinate you today – drop ins are welcome.  Check the location of your nearest clinics and booster eligibility here.

Canterbury has excellent rates of vaccination with 98% of eligible people having one dose, and 95% of our eligible community fully vaccinated, however fully vaccinated people can still get COVID-19 – the good news is you are likely to have a mild to moderate illness compared to someone who is unvaccinated, and most people can safely self-isolate at home and receive Care in the Community.

Be prepared – what is your family/ whānau COVID-19 plan? Where will you isolate away from others? Who will do the shopping, cooking and cleaning? Is your first aid kit stocked up with the basics? Who will look after the kids and pets if one or more of your whanau needs to self-isolate? Check the checklist for practical things you can do now to make sure you’re ready.

Been to a location of interest? If you’ve been to a location of interest in relation to recently reported cases of COVID-19 in Canterbury, follow the instructions listed on the Ministry of Health Locations of interest web page and keep checking back, as new locations are added during the day. In most cases you don’t need to stay at home, you just need to monitor your symptoms and get tested if you develop any cold or flu-like symptoms.

Testing is available throughout the holiday period. Our drive through COVID-19 testing centres at 174 Orchard Road Harewood, Christchurch and the Whānau Ora Community Clinic, 250 Pages Road, Wainoni, Christchurch are both open 7 days a week, with reduced hours on New Year’s day. Other testing locations can be found on the Canterbury DHB and Healthpoint websites. *Please note, The 24 Hour Surgery is not a COVID-19 testing centre.

Have a holiday Plan B – make sure you are aware of the risk that the spread of COVID-19 might affect your holiday plans and be prepared should this happen. Health guidance for the summer can be found here.

Feeling over it? If all this talk of COVID-19 is getting too much or you’re feeling anxious or just need someone to talk to you can call or text 1737 any time and you can speak to (or text) a trained counsellor free of charge.

Information for visitors to Christchurch

Visitors to Christchurch who need to see a doctor can visit one of the urgent care practices. Please note, you must call first if you have COVID-19 symptoms:

Information for anyone who attended the Hidden Lakes event

Six close contacts of the community case with Omicron announced late yesterday (29 December) are self-isolating in Christchurch under the management of the local public health unit.

The public health risk assessment for people who attended the ‘Hidden Lakes’ event at Hagley Park on 28 December is considered extremely low – particularly due to the 6 close contacts’ prior negative test results that day and significant physical distance between the stage and the crowd.

Anyone who has COVID-19 symptoms should get tested. Testing is available throughout the holiday period in Canterbury. Details of locations and times can be found on the Canterbury DHB and Healthpoint websites.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health Warning – Potentially toxic algal bloom in Wainono Lagoon

Health Warning – Potentially toxic algal bloom in Wainono Lagoon

Canterbury DHB’s Community and Public Health unit has issued a health warning after potentially toxic blue-green algae (planktonic cyanobacteria) was found in Wainono Lagoon. People should avoid the lake and animals, particularly dogs, should not be allowed near the water until the health warning has been lifted. 

Dr Matthew Reid, Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, says the algal bloom can produce toxins harmful to humans and animals.

“People should avoid contact with the water until further notice.

“Exposure may cause skin rashes, nausea, stomach cramps, tingling and numbness around the mouth and fingertips. If you experience any of these symptoms visit your doctor immediately and please let your doctor know if you have had contact with the lagoon water, Dr Reid says.

No one should drink the water from the lake at any time and stock and pets, particular dogs, should be kept away from the water and shoreline. Boiling the water does not remove the toxin.

Animals that show signs of illness after coming into contact with algal mats or scums should be taken to a vet immediately and the vet told that they may have been exposed to algal toxins.

Fish and shellfish can concentrate toxins and their consumption should be avoided. If fish are eaten, remove the gut and liver and wash in clean water.

Further information on gathering Mahinga Kai can be obtained below.

Environment Canterbury will monitor the lake weekly and the public will be advised of any changes in water quality that are of public health significance.

Facts about cyanobacteria:

  • Cyanobacteria occur naturally but can increase rapidly during warmer months.
  • Algal blooms are caused by a combination of nutrients in the water (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), and favourable weather conditions (e.g. increased temperature, calm days).
  • If the water is cloudy, discoloured, or has small globules suspended in it, avoid all contact.
  • Not all cyanobacterial blooms are visible to the naked eye and toxins can persist after the blooms disappear.
  • Cyanobacterial concentrations can change quickly with changing environmental conditions (e.g. wind). If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.

For further details visit: https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

For further information, contact: communications@cdhb.health.nz

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Health warning removed for algal bloom at Waiau River at Waiau Township Bridge

A health warning has been lifted for Waipara River at the Boys' Brigade site

Our Community and Public Health unit has lifted its health warning for Waipara River at Boys’ Brigade site

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, Dr Cheryl Brunton, says the latest water testing results show faecal bacteria levels in the Waipara River at the Boys’ Brigade site are now below guideline values and the health warning has been removed.

“The water in the Waipara River at the Boys’ Brigade site is suitable for recreational use,” Dr Brunton says.

When a health warning is in place, water quality at affected sites is not considered suitable for recreational uses including swimming because of the risk to health from the bacteria and other pathogens.

Water contaminated by human or animal faecal bacteria may contain a range of disease-causing micro-organisms such as viruses, bacteria and protozoa. 

“In most cases the ill-health effects from exposure to contaminated water are minor and short-lived.

“However, there is the potential for more serious diseases, such as hepatitis A, giardia, cryptosporosis, campylobacter and salmonella,” Dr Brunton says.

For further details visit:

https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/   

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Cantabs are being reminded of the COVID-19 testing options available this weekend

With COVID-19 cases continuing to be reported in the region, Cantabrians are being reminded of the COVID-19 testing options available to them if they want to be tested this weekend.

Yesterday over 2,700 COVID-19 swabs were carried out at our testing sites and via general practice teams across the Canterbury community and demand for testing has been high again today.

Free COVID-19 testing continues to be available at some general practices, and at our three Community-Based Testing Centres (CBTC).

The CBTCs currently operating in Canterbury are:

  • Orchard Road CBTC (near Airport), 174 Orchard Road, Christchurch. Open 9am-4pm (or later if demand requires), 7 days a week.
  • Whānau Ora Community Clinic CBTC, 250 Pages Road, Wainoni, Christchurch. Open 9am-3:30pm (or later if demand requires), 7 days a week.
  • Ashburton Hospital site CBTC – 28 Elizabeth Street, Ashburton hospital site. Open 10am-2pm every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. *Note: please enter via Driveway D, not the main entrance to the hospital. While this is a Drive In testing facility, and people arriving in cars is preferred, walk-ins can be accommodated.  

People can check if their GP can provide COVID-19 testing over the weekend by calling them or via the Healthpoint website: https://www.healthpoint.co.nz/covid-19/canterbury/.  

Canterbury’s Senior Responsible Officer for the COVID-19 response, Dr Helen Skinner says anyone who is displaying COVID-19 symptoms is encouraged to attend.

“No appointment is necessary and testing is free for everyone. You do not need a referral to attend a testing centre and you can drive-up or walk-in,” says Dr Skinner.

Please be aware though that if it’s busy you may have to wait for your test. Please arrive at least half an hour before the facility closes.

More information on testing is here and if you save the link you will be able to check for changes: https://www.cdhb.health.nz/your-health/canterbury-dhb-covid-19-information/#4.

The Ministry of Health will continue to update locations of interest in Canterbury on their website.

 

Accessing Health Services

Unless you have been contacted by phone to advise that your planned (elective) surgery or outpatient appointment is postponed, please assume it is going ahead and turn up to your appointment.

Masks or face coverings must be worn at all times at Canterbury DHB sites and will be provided if people don’t have them. Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must also be used.

Please scan in using the QR code, wherever you go using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App, and ensure Bluetooth is turned on within the app – this means you’ll receive alerts if you’ve been exposed to a case.

Current visitor restrictions for DHB facilities can be found here. Most importantly, please don’t come visiting if you feel unwell.

 

Vaccinations

This is a timely reminder of how easily COVID-19 can spread. Our best defence against the virus is to have as many people as possible in our community vaccinated.

It’s important that we continue to improve vaccination coverage across Canterbury, as high vaccination rates will help protect our communities and keep people safe.

94 percent of our eligible population has now received at least one dose and 84 percent are fully vaccinated. We’re urging anyone yet to receive their vaccinations to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their whānau and our community.  

A full list of clinics, including multiple walk-in options, can be found here: https://vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz/covid-19-vaccination-clinics-in-christchurch-canterbury-west-coast/.  

Our drive through vaccination clinic at Christchurch Arena in Addington is open until 7.30pm tonight and 11am-5pm over the weekend.

There’s a number of pop-up events people can attend this weekend as well:

  • New World Ferry Road car park today, today until 6.30pm
  • Mandeville Sports Centre drop-in vaccination clinic, 431 Mandeville Road (Swannanoa), today until 7.30pm and Saturday 9am-12pm
  • Choice Aranui vaccination event, 31 Hampshire St (Aranui), Saturday 10am-3pm
  • New Brighton Mall pop-up vaccination clinic, Saturday 10am-2pm
  • Etu Pasifika drive-through vaccination clinic, 173 Montreal Street (Central City), Saturday 9am-4pm
  • Tangata Atumotu pop-up vaccination clinic, Rowley Avenue Shops (Hoon Hay), Sunday 10am-3pm
  • North Beach Surf Lifesaving Club car park, 80 Marine Parade (North New Brighton), Sunday 10am-2pm
  • PlaceMakers Riccarton follow-up event, 2 Mandeville St (Riccarton), Sunday 10am-2pm
  • Riccarton Sunday Market Q&A and vaccination clinic, Riccarton Racecourse, Sunday 9.30am-2pm
  • Oxford Farmers Market, 42 Main Street (Oxford), Sunday 9am-2pm

There are currently 100+ community vaccination clinics open throughout Canterbury, many open weekends and late nights. You do not need to book for most of them. If you prefer a fixed time, you can book your vaccination at www.bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz or call 0800 28 29 26.

The more of us who are fully vaccinated, the more protection we will have against COVID-19, and the more freedom this gives us.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Health warning removed for algal bloom at Waiau River at Waiau Township Bridge

A health warning has been issued for unsafe recreational water quality in the Waipara River

Our Community and Public Health unit has issued a health warning after high levels of faecal bacteria were found in consecutive samples taken from Waipara River at the Boys Brigade site.

Dr Cheryl Brunton, Medical Officer of Health, says water quality at affected site is not considered suitable for recreational uses including swimming because of the risk to health from the bacteria and other pathogens.

If fish are eaten, remove the gut and liver and wash in clean water before cooking. For further information on gathering Mahinga Kai refer to information below.

Water contaminated by human or animal faecal matter may contain a range of disease causing micro-organisms such as viruses, bacteria and protozoa. 

“In most cases the ill-health effects from exposure to contaminated water are minor and short-lived. 

“However, there is the potential for more serious diseases, such as hepatitis A, or salmonella infection,” Dr Brunton says.

The sites where water quality is affected are monitored and are listed on Environment Canterbury’s website.

For further details visit:

https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health warning removed for algal bloom at Waiau River at Waiau Township Bridge

A health warning has been issued for algal bloom in a tributary of the Waiau Uwha River

Canterbury DHB’s Community and Public Health unit has issued a health warning for a tributary of the Waiau Uwha River at the Waiau Township. 

The warning follows the finding of moderate to high cover of potentially toxic algae (benthic cyanobacteria) in a tributary on the west bank of the Waiau Uwha River at the Waiau Township.

Algae mats may also be present downstream in the Waiau Uwha River.

People should avoid the area and animals, particularly dogs, should not be allowed near the water until the health warning has been lifted. 

There are also other access points along the Waiau River that may have benthic cyanobacteria present. People are advised to treat every low-flowing river cautiously, check for the presence of benthic cyanobacteria and avoid contact.

Dr Cheryl Brunton, Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, says the algae look like dark brown to black mats and can produce toxins harmful to people and animals.

“Exposure may cause skin rashes, nausea, stomach cramps, tingling and numbness around the mouth and fingertips.

“If you experience any of these symptoms, visit your doctor immediately, also let your doctor know if you’ve had contact with dark brown/black algal mats or water in this area,” Dr Brunton says.

Pets that show signs of illness after coming into contact with algal mats should be taken to a vet immediately.

People and animals should remain out of the waterways until the warnings have been lifted.

Environment Canterbury is monitoring the sites and the public will be advised of any changes in water quality.

Facts about cyanobacteria:

  • Appears as dark brown/black mats attached to rocks along the riverbed.
  • A low cover of the algae can occur naturally but can increase rapidly during warmer months. Algal blooms are influenced by a combination of available nutrients in the water and sediments (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), a sustained period of low and stable flows, and favourable weather conditions (e.g. increased temperature, calm days).
  • It often has a strong musty smell and algal toxin concentrations can vary over short periods.
  • Although high river levels will remove the algal bloom, detached mats can accumulate along the shore and increase the risk of exposure to toxins.
  • If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.
  • Although district or city councils may place warning signs, these may not be seen at the numerous river access points, hence the need for people/ dog-walkers to treat every low-flowing river cautiously.

For further information visit

https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Cantabs are being urged to seek a COVID-19 test after the notification of a case in the region today

Please attribute comment to Dr Helen Skinner, Senior Responsible Officer for the COVID-19 response, Canterbury DHB:

With the Ministry of Health confirming a case of COVID-19 in Christchurch today, Cantabrians who are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms are being urged to get tested.

People can be tested at their General Practice (you need to call before you turn up for a test) or at a community-based testing centre (CBTC).

You don’t need a referral to attend a CBTC. You can drive-up or walk-in. Testing is free, unless you require a test for travel overseas.

The CBTCs currently operating in Canterbury are:

  • Orchard Road CBTC (near Airport), 174 Orchard Road, Christchurch. Open 9am-4pm (or later if demand requires), 7 days a week.
  • Whānau Ora Community Clinic CBTC, 250 Pages Road, Wainoni, Christchurch. Open 9am-3:30pm (or later if demand requires), 7 days a week.
  • Ashburton Hospital site CBTC – 28 Elizabeth Street, Ashburton hospital site. Open 10am-2pm every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. *Note: please enter via Driveway D, not the main entrance to the hospital. While this is a Drive In testing facility, and people arriving in cars is preferred, walk-ins can be accommodated.  

We have increased capacity at our testing centres, with additional staff brought on board. Our Orchard Road site will remain open later if needed, to respond to demand.

People can check if their GP can provide COVID-19 testing by calling them or via the Healthpoint website: https://www.healthpoint.co.nz/covid-19/canterbury/.  

Please get tested if you visited a location of interest or have cold and flu symptoms.

Full details of testing options in Canterbury can be found here: https://www.cdhb.health.nz/your-health/canterbury-dhb-covid-19-information/#4

 

Accessing Health Services

Unless you have been contacted by phone to advise that your planned (elective) surgery or outpatient appointment is postponed, please assume it is going ahead and turn up to your appointment.

Masks or face coverings must be worn at all times at Canterbury DHB sites and will be provided if people don’t have them. Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must also be used.

Please scan in using the QR code, wherever you go using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App, and ensure Bluetooth is turned on within the app – this means you’ll receive alerts if you’ve been exposed to a case.

Current visitor restrictions for DHB facilities can be found here. Restrictions are in place because reducing the number of people entering our hospitals reduces the opportunities of infection spreading, helping protect vulnerable patients and our staff. Most importantly, please don’t come visiting if you feel unwell.

We continue to treat everyone who presents at our facilities needing healthcare, regardless of their immunisation status.

 

Vaccinations

This is a timely reminder of how easily COVID-19 can spread. Our best defence against the virus is to have as many people as possible in our community vaccinated.

It’s important that we continue to improve vaccination coverage across Canterbury, as high vaccination rates will help protect our communities and keep people safe.

94 percent of our eligible population has now received at least one dose and 83 percent are fully vaccinated. We’re urging anyone yet to receive their vaccinations to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their whanau and our community.  

A full list of clinics, including multiple walk-in options, can be found here: https://vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz/covid-19-vaccination-clinics-in-christchurch-canterbury-west-coast/.  

Our drive through vaccination clinic at Christchurch Arena in Addington is open until 7.30pm every weeknight, and there’s a pop-up vaccination event at the New World Ferry Road car park Thursday and Friday this week from midday-6.30pm.

There are currently 100+ community vaccination clinics open throughout Canterbury, many open weekends and late nights. You do not need to book for most of them. If you prefer a fixed time, you can book your vaccination at www.bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz or call 0800 28 29 26.

The more of us who are fully vaccinated, the more protection we will have against COVID-19, and the more freedom this gives us.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated in response to a sixth day of no new community cases of COVID-19 in our region

Please attribute comment to Tracey Maisey, Canterbury DHB Emergency Coordination Centre (ECC) Controller:

Following a sixth day in a row with no new community cases of COVID-19 in Canterbury, and with the region’s four active cases in Managed Isolation and Quarantine facilities, Canterbury DHB has made changes to its visitor restrictions which will come into effect at 11:59pm tonight.

Visitor access to all Canterbury DHB health facilities will revert back to the restrictions previously in place under Delta Alert Level 2.

Please don’t visit the hospital if you don’t need to.

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

  • All visitors need to scan in using the COVID-19 Tracer App or sign in on arrival and provide their contact details
  • If you’re using the COVID-19 Tracer App, please ensure Bluetooth tracing is turned on
  • All visitors must wear a mask or fabric face covering – please bring your own
  • All visitors are expected to practice safe physical distancing. You should remain two metres away from people you don’t know
  • Everyone, including visitors should practise good hand hygiene
  • Visitors who are unwell should not be entering our facilities.

There is further guidance and restrictions in place at individual facilities as follows.

Christchurch Hospital

  • Visiting hours for Christchurch Hospital are from 11am – 1pm and 3pm – 8pm, with only one person visiting at a time
  • Exceptions: Charge Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis. For example, exceptions will be considered on compassionate grounds including for end of life care
  • Emergency Department – one support person only to accompany someone presenting to ED
  • For children: Paediatric wards (including CHOC) – two caregivers can accompany their child
  • Anyone with planned/elective surgery or an outpatient appointment should turn up as planned – if there’s any change to your appointment we’ll contact you directly.

 

Christchurch Outpatients

  • Due to the ongoing need to maintain physical distancing, support people will only be allowed at Christchurch Outpatients by exception only. If you need a support person with you at your appointment, please call the number on your outpatient appointment letter to arrange this.

 

Burwood Hospital

  • The visiting hours at Burwood Hospital are 11am – 7pm with only one person visiting at a time for each patient
  • Only one support person can attend with a patient for outpatient appointments and planned/elective surgery
  • Exceptions: Charge Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis. For example, exceptions will be considered on compassionate grounds including for end of life care. Please contact the ward’s Charge Nurse Manager to discuss, or the Duty Nurse Manager after hours.

 

Christchurch Women’s Hospital/Rangiora Health Hub maternity/Lincoln Maternity/Ashburton Maternity

  • One support person only to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment
  • Women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed two support partners for the duration of the labour and birth
  • Women who are having an elective caesarean section are allowed one support person
  • For the duration of their postnatal stay a woman can have one named support person who will be able to visit. Siblings of the new baby may accompany, as long as they are well
  • Outpatient appointments (including Fetal Maternal Medicine) – a support person will only be permitted under specific criteria determined by staff.

*Note: St Georges Maternity Unit is also following the same guidelines.

 

Specialist Mental Health Services at Hillmorton campus & The Princess Margaret Hospital site

  • One person may visit once per day during Hillmorton Hospital and The Princess Margaret Hospital visiting hours
  • One support person per outpatient
  • Additional people will be considered by the Clinical/Charge Nurse Manager or Duty Nurse Manager (after hours). This must be by prior arrangement to ensure that we can meet physical distancing requirements.

 

Ashburton Hospital

Visiting hours are as normal, but:

  • One visitor at a time – although more than one person can visit each day
  • One support person per outpatient
  • One support person to accompany someone to the Ashburton Acute Assessment Unit
  • Exceptions: Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis.

 

Age-Related Residential Care facilities managed by Canterbury DHB: Oxford Hospital, Darfield Hospital, Ellesmere Hospital, Waikari Hospital, Tuarangi Home

  • To ensure the safety of patients, all of whom are aged over 65, visitors to the Aged Residential Care part of this facility are only allowed by prior appointment
  • Please contact the facility to discuss with the manager. There may be a separate entrance for visitors, please check with staff.

 

Park and Ride

  • The hospital shuttle service from the Deans Ave car park is running as normal again with a weekend service back up and running and 10 people permitted per shuttle.

Full details of further changes to visiting at other Canterbury DHB facilities, including cafés will be available on our website tonight.

As always, please don’t visit if you’re unwell and remember the usual public health precautions such as hand hygiene and physical distancing.

If you have any COVID-19 symptoms – no matter how mild – please seek a test.

If you are unwell and need to see a doctor you should call your usual GP team for advice 24/7. For general health information visit: https://www.healthinfo.org.nz/

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health warning  – algal bloom in Lake Pegasus

Health advice following the Bromley wastewater treatment plant fire

Canterbury DHB’s Community and Public Health Unit is providing the Canterbury community with some practical advice following the fire at the wastewater treatment plant in Bromley, Christchurch.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Cheryl Brunton says while there is no longer a significant amount of smoke in the air around this location, the strong smell created by the fire may persist for some time.

“Anyone experiencing any persistent health issues from the fire should contact their general practice team for advice, in the first instance,” says Dr Brunton.

Community and Public Health’s other advice is as follows:

Food safety

  • Wash home-grown fruits and vegetables before consumption.

Outside

  • If soot from the fire reached your home, you may wish to hose down your roof, outside walls, decks, paths, and driveway
  • Any large pieces of debris can be picked up using gloves. Please ensure the debris is cool and if in doubt soak in water before disposing of it in your red bin.

Internal surfaces

  • Any visible soot or dust (for example, on windowsills) can be wiped down using a damp cloth. For hard surfaces, use a mop with a mild soap or detergent.
  • Soft furnishing can be cleaned using a vacuum cleaner (preferably with a HEPA filter).

Clothing

  • If you had clothes on the washing line which have been exposed to smoke and soot, put them through a rinse cycle and then wash again as usual.  Wash any other items that smell of smoke or soot.

Pets

  • Wash your pet and pet bedding if they were exposed to smoke and soot.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health warning  – algal bloom in Lake Pegasus

Smoke from fire at Bromley wastewater treatment plant

Canterbury DHB’s Community and Public Health unit has issued a public health warning for smoke from the fire at the wastewater treatment plant in Bromley, Christchurch.

Air around this location is smoky and there is potential that people who are sensitive to smoke – such as those with heart or lung conditions, pregnant women, young children and the elderly ­– may experience symptoms including coughing, shortness of breath or eye, nose and throat irritation.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Cheryl Brunton says exposure to smoke can worsen pre-existing health conditions such as asthma and heart disease.

“People affected by the smoke should close windows and doors and stay indoors.

FENZ is continuing to work to get the fire under control. The Easterly wind is sending smoke in the direction of some of Christchurch’s eastern suburbs and central city areas.

“Anyone experiencing health issues from the fire should contact their general practice team for advice, in the first instance,” Dr Brunton says.

What to do when it’s smoky outside

If you see or smell smoke outside, you should stay inside if it’s safe to do so.

Remember to:

  • Keep your windows and doors shut
  • Switch your air conditioning to ‘recirculate’
  • Air out your house when the smoke clears
  • Look out for children, older people, and others at risk
  • Keep pets inside with clean water and food. Keep pets’ bedding inside if possible.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Cantabs are being urged to seek a COVID-19 test after COVID was detected in wastewater sampling on Friday

With the Ministry of Health confirming the detection of COVID-19 in two new wastewater samples collected in Christchurch on Friday, it’s important Cantabrians who have any COVID-19 symptoms – no matter how mild – seek a test.

Over the weekend more than 5,400 COVID-19 swabs were carried out at our testing sites and via general practice teams across the Canterbury community. Because of the recently reported cases and new wastewater detections, it’s important these high testing rates continue.

Free COVID-19 testing also continues to be available at some general practices, and at our three Community-Based Testing Centres (CBTC).

The current testing options available in the community have good capacity to respond to high demand throughout the region.

COVID-19 CBTCs in Christchurch and Canterbury:

People can check if their GP can provide COVID-19 testing by calling them or via the Healthpoint website: https://www.healthpoint.co.nz/covid-19/canterbury/.  

Canterbury DHB’s Emergency Coordination Centre Controller, Tracey Maisey says anyone who is displaying any COVID-19 symptoms or has visited a location of interest is encouraged to attend.

“No appointment is necessary and testing is free for everyone. You don’t need a referral to attend a testing centre and you can drive-up or walk-in,” says Tracey.

Please be aware though that if it’s busy you may have to wait for your test. While not essential, we recommend you take your NHI number with you, which can speed up the process. Please arrive at least half an hour before the facility closes.

More information on testing is here and if you save the link you will be able to check for changes: https://www.cdhb.health.nz/your-health/canterbury-dhb-covid-19-information/#4.

 

Vaccinations

We’re also reminding people that there are plenty of places to get vaccinated if they have not already.

It’s important that we continue to improve vaccination coverage across Canterbury, as high vaccination rates will help protect our communities and keep people safe.

Over 91 percent of our eligible population has now received at least one dose. We’re urging anyone yet to receive their vaccinations to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their whānau and our community.  

A full list of clinics, including multiple walk-in options, can be found here: https://vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz/covid-19-vaccination-clinics-in-christchurch-canterbury-west-coast/.  

There are currently 100+ community vaccination clinics open throughout Canterbury, many open weekends and late nights. You do not need to book for most of them.  If you prefer a fixed time, you can book your vaccination at www.bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz or call 0800 28 29 26.

The more of us who are fully vaccinated, the more protection we will have against COVID-19, and the more freedom this gives us.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

The DHB's visitor policy remains unchanged from last week

Visitor access to all Canterbury DHB health facilities will remain restricted until at least 11:59pm Thursday 4 November, to enable safe physical distancing and to reduce the chance of a visitor with COVID-19 spreading it to vulnerable patients and staff.

Limiting our interactions with others, together with getting vaccinated are two of our best defences against COVID-19. For this reason, a limited visitor policy applies across all Canterbury DHB facilities.

Children under 16 and people who are unwell cannot visit under any circumstances, except to access emergency care.

A person may only enter our facilities:

  • to accompany someone when initially attending the Emergency Department
  • to visit a person receiving end of life care
  • to provide support to a person with a disability
  • to enable one parent/caregiver to be with a child who is in hospital
  • CHOC – (Child Haematology Oncology Centre), one parent to accompany/stay with each patient
  • as a parent visiting the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
  • ICU – one nominated person may visit once per day during visiting hours and be the only visitor for the duration of the patient’s stay
  •  Maternity:
    • one support person only to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment
    • women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed two support people for the duration of the labour and birth
    • women can have one named support person for the duration of their postnatal stay
    • LMCs may visit women postnatally in our maternity units.
  • Specialist Mental Health Services – one support person to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment or urgent care

All of the above remain at the discretion of the Charge Nurse/Midwife Manager for the ward or service. Visitors will not be allowed in wards caring for patients in isolation. Additional exceptions may be made on compassionate grounds.

Where these visits do take place, all visitors are required to wear a mask or face-covering at all times, unless they have a condition that makes them exempt and can show their exemption card (see below).

Please scan in using the QR code, wherever you go in a DHB facility using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App, and ensure Bluetooth is turned on within the app – this means you’ll receive alerts if you’ve been exposed to a case. Alternatively you can sign in at reception.

Elective surgeries and outpatient appointments

Unless you have been contacted by phone to advise that your planned (elective) surgery or outpatient appointment is postponed, please assume it is going ahead and turn up to your appointment.

Exemption card for face coverings 

We know that some people who have a disability or health condition may not be able to wear a face covering safely or comfortably. If you cannot wear one, you can get an exemption card. You can show your exemption card when needed, for example to a bus driver. 

You can request a card from the Disabled Persons Assembly NZ by contacting them on 04 801 9100 or at info@dpa.org.nz.

DHB Aged Residential Care facilities

The limited visitors rule applies. However, family visits for palliative care residents who are receiving end of life care and do not have COVID-19 will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Park and Ride

The hospital shuttle service will continue to operate Monday-Friday 6:15am-8.30pm daily, to and from the Christchurch Hospital main entrance and Waipapa, and to and from the Outpatients Building until 6pm. There is will be no shuttle service running at weekends while we have community cases.

The following applies:

  • all people using the shuttle will be required to wear a mask or face-covering unless medically exempt
  • a limit of five passengers per shuttle will be observed to allow greater physical distancing
  • hand sanitiser will be available to use as you enter and leave the shuttle
  • an enhanced cleaning schedule is in place during shuttle operational hours
  • please don’t use the shuttle if you are sick. You should not be visiting any of our facilities if you are unwell.

Cafés

Christchurch Campus:

  • Great Escape Café – open for staff onlywith coffee and pre-packaged food available, usual opening hours
  • Willow Lane – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 8am-2pm
  • Kanuka – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 8am-2pm
  • PeaBerry, Parkside and Christchurch Women’s Café will be closed.

Ashburton Hospital Café – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 8am-4pm.

Hillmorton Avon Café – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 11am-1pm.

Burwood Travis Courtyard Café – open to staff only for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Sunday 8:30am-3:30pm.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Cantabs are being reminded that COVID-19 testing is still available this weekend

With COVID-19 cases continuing to be reported in the region, Cantabrians are being reminded of the COVID-19 testing options available to them if they want to be tested this weekend.

Yesterday over 3,000 COVID-19 swabs were carried out at our testing sites and via general practice teams across the Canterbury community and demand for testing has been high again today.

Free COVID-19 testing continues to be available at some general practices, and at our three Community-Based Testing Centres (CBTC).

COVID-19 CBTCs in Christchurch and Canterbury:

People can check if their GP can provide COVID-19 testing over the weekend by calling them or via the Healthpoint website: https://www.healthpoint.co.nz/covid-19/canterbury/.  

Canterbury’s Senior Responsible Officer for the COVID-19 response, Dr Helen Skinner says anyone who is displaying COVID-19 symptoms or has visited a location of interest is encouraged to attend.

“No appointment is necessary and testing is free for everyone. You do not need a referral to attend a testing centre and you can drive-up or walk-in,” says Dr Skinner.

Please be aware though that if it’s busy you may have to wait for your test. Please arrive at least half an hour before the facility closes.

More information on testing is here and if you save the link you will be able to check for changes: https://www.cdhb.health.nz/your-health/canterbury-dhb-covid-19-information/#4.

 

Accessing Health Services

Unless you have been contacted by phone to advise that your planned (elective) surgery or outpatient appointment is postponed, please assume it is going ahead and turn up to your appointment.

Masks or face coverings must be worn at all times at Canterbury DHB sites and will be provided if people don’t have them. Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must also be used.

Please scan in using the QR code, wherever you go using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App, and ensure Bluetooth is turned on within the app – this means you’ll receive alerts if you’ve been exposed to a case.

Current visitor restrictions for DHB facilities can be found here. Most importantly, please don’t come visiting if you feel unwell.

 

Vaccinations

This is a timely reminder of how easily COVID-19 can spread. Our best defence against the virus is to have as many people as possible in our community vaccinated.

It’s important that we continue to improve vaccination coverage across Canterbury, as high vaccination rates will help protect our communities and keep people safe.

90 percent of our eligible population has now received at least one dose. We’re urging anyone yet to receive their vaccinations to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their whanau and our community.  

A full list of clinics, including multiple walk-in options, can be found here: https://vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz/covid-19-vaccination-clinics-in-christchurch-canterbury-west-coast/.  

There are currently 100+ community vaccination clinics open throughout Canterbury, many open weekends and late nights. You do not need to book for most of them.  If you prefer a fixed time, you can book your vaccination at www.bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz or call 0800 28 29 26.

The more of us who are fully vaccinated, the more protection we will have against COVID-19, and the more freedom this gives us.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

The DHB's visitor policy has again been updated in response to community cases of COVID-19 in our region

With the confirmation of COVID-19 cases in Christchurch, visitor access to all Canterbury DHB health facilities will be further restricted from 11:59pm tonight, to enable safe physical distancing. This will be reviewed on Monday 1 November.

Limiting our interactions with others is one of our best defences against COVID-19. For this reason, a limited visitor policy will apply across all Canterbury DHB facilities.

Children under 16 and people who are unwell cannot visit under any circumstances, except to access emergency care.

A person may only enter our facilities:

  • to visit a person receiving end of life care
  • to provide support to a person with a disability
  • to enable one parent/caregiver to be with a child who is in hospital
  • CHOC – (Child Haematology Oncology Centre), one parent to accompany/stay with each patient
  • as a parent visiting the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
  • ICU – one nominated person may visit once per day during visiting hours and be the only visitor for the duration of the patient’s stay
  • Maternity:
    • one support person only to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment
    • women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed one support person for the duration of the labour and birth
    • women can have one named support person for the duration of their postnatal stay
    • LMCs may visit women postnatally in our maternity units.
  • Specialist Mental Health Services – one support person to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment or urgent care

All of the above remain at the discretion of the Charge Nurse/Midwife Manager for the ward or service. Visitors will not be allowed in wards caring for patients in isolation. Additional exceptions may be made on compassionate grounds.

Where these visits do take place, all visitors are required to wear a mask or face-covering at all times, unless they have a condition that makes them exempt and can show their exemption card (see below).

Please scan in using the QR code, wherever you go using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App, and ensure Bluetooth is turned on within the app – this means you’ll receive alerts if you’ve been exposed to a case. Alternatively you can sign in at reception.

 

Elective surgeries and outpatient appointments

Unless you have been contacted by phone to advise that your planned (elective) surgery or outpatient appointment is postponed, please assume it is going ahead and turn up to your appointment.

 

Exemption card for face coverings 

We know that some people who have a disability or health condition may not be able to wear a face covering safely or comfortably. If you cannot wear one, you can get an exemption card. You can show your exemption card when needed, for example to a bus driver. 

You can request a card from the Disabled Persons Assembly NZ by contacting them on 04 801 9100 or at info@dpa.org.nz.

 

DHB Aged Residential Care facilities
The limited visitors rule applies. However, family visits for palliative care residents who are receiving end of life care and do not have COVID-19 will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

 

Park and Ride

The hospital shuttle service will continue to operate Monday-Friday 6:15am-8.30pm daily, to and from the Christchurch Hospital main entrance and Waipapa, and to and from the Outpatients Building until 6pm. There is will be no shuttle service running at weekends while we have community cases.

The following applies:

  • all people using the shuttle will be required to wear a mask or face-covering unless medically exempt
  • a limit of five passengers per shuttle will be observed to allow greater physical distancing
  • hand sanitiser will be available to use as you enter and leave the shuttle
  • an enhanced cleaning schedule is in place during shuttle operational hours
  • please don’t use the shuttle if you are sick. You should not be visiting any of our facilities if you are unwell.

 

Cafés

Christchurch Campus:

  • Great Escape Café – open for staff only with coffee and pre-packaged food available, usual opening hours
  • Willow Lane – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 8am-2pm
  • Kanuka – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 8am-2pm
  • PeaBerry, Parkside and Christchurch Women’s Café will be closed.

Ashburton Hospital Café – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 8am-4pm.

Hillmorton Avon Café – open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday 11am-1pm.

Burwood Travis Courtyard Café – open to staff only for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Sunday 8:30am-3:30pm.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Cantabs are urged to get tested today following the confirmation of two COVID-19 cases in the region

Please attribute comment to Dr Helen Skinner, Senior Responsible Officer for the COVID-19 response, Canterbury DHB:

With the Ministry of Health confirming two COVID-19 cases in Christchurch overnight, Cantabrians who are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms or have visited a location of interest are being urged to get tested.

People can be tested at their General Practice (you need to call before you turn up for a test) or at a community-based testing centre (CBTC).

You don’t need a referral to attend a CBTC. You can drive-up or walk-in. Testing is free, unless you require a test for travel overseas.

The COVID-19 CBTCs currently operating in Canterbury are:

  • Orchard Road CBTC (near Airport), 174 Orchard Road, (Off Harewood Road), Christchurch. Open 9am-late, 7 days a week.
  • Whānau Ora Community Clinic CBTC (Wainoni), 250 Pages Road, Wainoni, Christchurch. Open 9am-3:30pm (or later if demand requires), 7 days a week.
  • Ashburton Hospital site CBTC – 28 Elizabeth Street, Ashburton hospital site, Open 10am-2pm, Tuesday to Thursday and on Saturday (Walk-in/no referral required) 

Our testing centres are already experiencing increased demand and we have increased capacity to respond to this, with additional staff brought on board today. Our Orchard Road site will remain open late today as demand requires.

People can check if their GP can provide COVID-19 testing by calling them or via the Healthpoint website: https://www.healthpoint.co.nz/covid-19/canterbury/.  

Please get tested if you visited a location of interest or have cold and flu symptoms.

Full details of testing options in Canterbury can be found here: https://www.cdhb.health.nz/your-health/canterbury-dhb-covid-19-information/#4

 

Accessing Health Services

Unless you have been contacted by phone to advise that your planned (elective) surgery or outpatient appointment is postponed, please assume it is going ahead and turn up to your appointment.

Masks or face coverings must be worn at all times at Canterbury DHB sites and will be provided if people don’t have them. Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must also be used.

Please scan in using the QR code, wherever you go using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App, and ensure Bluetooth is turned on within the app – this means you’ll receive alerts if you’ve been exposed to a case.

Current visitor restrictions for DHB facilities can be found here. Most importantly, please don’t come visiting if you feel unwell.

 

Vaccinations

This is a timely reminder of how easily COVID-19 can spread. Our best defence against the virus is to have as many people as possible in our community vaccinated.

It’s important that we continue to improve vaccination coverage across Canterbury, as high vaccination rates will help protect our communities and keep people safe.

89 percent of our eligible population has now received at least one dose. We’re urging anyone yet to receive their vaccinations to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their whanau and our community.  

A full list of clinics, including multiple walk-in options, can be found here: https://vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz/covid-19-vaccination-clinics-in-christchurch-canterbury-west-coast/.  

There are currently 100+ community vaccination clinics open throughout Canterbury, many open weekends and late nights. You do not need to book for most of them.  If you prefer a fixed time, you can book your vaccination at www.bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz or call 0800 28 29 26.

The more of us who are fully vaccinated, the more protection we will have against COVID-19, and the more freedom this gives us.

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.
Health warning removed for algal bloom at Waiau River at Waiau Township Bridge

A health warning has been issued for algal bloom in Lake Forsyth

Canterbury DHB’s Community and Public Health unit has issued a health warning after potentially toxic blue-green algae (planktonic cyanobacteria) was found in Te Roto o Wairewa (Lake Forsyth).

People should avoid the lake, and animals, particularly dogs, should not be allowed near the water until the health warning has been lifted. 

Dr Cheryl Brunton, Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, says the algal bloom can produce toxins harmful to humans and animals.

“People should avoid contact with the water until further notice.

“Exposure may cause skin rashes, nausea, stomach cramps, tingling and numbness around the mouth and fingertips. If you experience any of these symptoms visit your doctor immediately and please let your doctor know if you have had contact with the lake water,” Dr Brunton says.

No one should drink the water from the lake at any time. Boiling the water does not remove the toxin.

Animals that show signs of illness after coming into contact with algal mats or scums should be taken to a vet immediately.

Fish and shellfish can concentrate toxins and their consumption should be avoided. If fish are eaten, remove the gut and liver and wash in clean water. Further information on gathering Mahinga Kai can be obtained below.

Facts about cyanobacteria:

  • Cyanobacteria occur naturally but can increase rapidly during warmer months.
  • Algal blooms are caused by a combination of nutrients in the water (such as nitrogen and phosphorus), and favourable weather conditions (e.g. increased temperature, calm days).
  • If the water is cloudy, discoloured, or has small globules suspended in it, avoid all contact.
  • Not all cyanobacterial blooms are visible to the naked eye and toxins can persist after the blooms disappear.
  • Cyanobacterial concentrations can change quickly with changing environmental conditions (e.g. wind). If a health warning is in place avoid contact with the water.

For further details visit: https://www.lawa.org.nz/explore-data/canterbury-region/

Or contact Community and Public Health on (03) 364 1777:

https://www.cph.co.nz/your-health/recreational-water/

For more information about Mahinga Kai:

https://www.cph.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/saf0112.pdf

ENDS

THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

FUSH will be at Ngā Hau e Whā on Saturday serving up delicious kai to those being vaccinated

Please attribute comment to Dr Helen Skinner, Senior Responsible Officer for Canterbury’s COVID-19 response:

With Summer just eight weeks away we need Cantabrians who haven’t already received their COVID-19 vaccinations to get them now, so we can enjoy everything a classic Kiwi summer has to offer.

Approximately 82 percent of our eligible enrolled Canterbury population is now either fully vaccinated, has had a single dose or is booked to receive their vaccination – and it’s never been easier for the rest to get a vaccination with Super Saturday coming to Canterbury.

Our region is gearing up for a big day of COVID-19 vaccinations this Saturday 16 October. The DHB is bolstering vaccination capacity across the region, including extra staff being brought on board, with the aim of making vaccinations as accessible as possible for those dropping in.

There will be a number of ways people can receive their vaccinations. These include community events and extended hours drop-in vaccination clinics across our region, throughout the day.

We’ll be turning up the music and dishing out free kai for those coming along to our drive-through vaccination clinic at the Christchurch Arena, to create a festival-like atmosphere for people to enjoy. We’re extending the clinic’s hours as well, to 9am-7.30pm on Saturday.

We’re also hosting a community vaccination and information clinic at Ki te Tihi Hapori Hauora in Eastgate Mall from 10am-4pm. There will be a bouncy castle for kids, free sausage sizzle and vouchers and prizes on offer from the mall’s businesses.

The Etu Pasifika Vaccination Centre in Montreal Street will be open for drop-ins and drive-through vaccinations on Saturday between 9am-4pm. People attending will have the opportunity to speak directly to Pasifika clinicians about COVID-19 vaccinations.

The Ngā Hau e Whā National Marae vaccination clinic is also open from 9am-4pm for drop-ins and will have free kai on hand from Anton Matthews’ Fush team once again.

For those in the Hurunui District on Saturday, there will be a pop-up vaccination clinic at the Amberley Farmers Market at the Hurunui District Council Chambers from 9am-1pm. Anyone can stop by to receive their vaccination at the market.

Last but certainly not least, we are launching the ‘JabberWaka’ – our mobile vaccination motorhome in Kaiapoi this weekend. On Saturday and Sunday, the JabberWaka will be at the Kaiapoi Park and Ride site on Charles Street from 11am-5.30pm. A shuttle van will be running from the Kaiapoi Spring Festival on Sunday to take people to the vaccination site and back.

Free transport will be provided throughout Canterbury, with Metro showing their support by offering free bus rides to and from vaccination clinics on all Metro services on Saturday and right through until mid-December. This includes any whānau, caregivers, and support people.

If you’re part of the 20% of people across New Zealand who have not yet had a COVID-19 vaccination, and you’ll be in Canterbury this weekend, now’s your chance! It’s going to be super easy to get vaccinated on Super Saturday.

If you know someone who is yet to get vaccinated, we still need your help. Support and encourage your friends, whānau, and colleagues who are hesitant about getting vaccinated, or haven’t done so yet.

The push to get as many people vaccinated as possible this weekend will continue in Canterbury on Sunday as pop-up events and primary care clinics keep up the hard mahi. The Waikari Health Centre will be open on Sunday 17 October from 10am-1pm. There are also drop-in vaccination events at the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa (EFKS) in Woolston on Sunday from 10am-3pm and at the Hampstead Rugby Club in Ashburton from 9am–4pm on Sunday.

Details of Super Saturday events, including other drop-in clinics hosted by primary care, can be found on our website: https://vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz/super-saturday/

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A drive-through vaccination clinic will open in Christchurch next week

Cantabrians have another opportunity to receive their vaccinations from the comfort of their own vehicles with a drive-through vaccination clinic starting on Monday 4 October – no appointments necessary.

The region’s first drive-through clinic was set up in August for three weeks, to prioritise vaccinations for customer-facing essential workers.

This time round, the drive-through clinic is open to everyone in Canterbury. We’re focused on getting as many eligible people as possible their first dose by Labour weekend – that means they can have their second dose before Christmas and we’ll all be set for summer, knowing our community has high levels of protection.

Where: Christchurch Arena, Addington – Wrights Road entrance

When: Monday 4 October – Sunday 31 October

  • Monday – Friday: 1.30pm-7.30pm
  • Saturday & Sunday: 11am-5pm.

No appointment is needed to attend.

People can have their first or second dose vaccinations at the drive-through clinic. Those attending are asked to cancel any existing vaccination appointments they have booked.

Canterbury’s Senior Responsible Officer for the COVID-19 response, Dr Helen Skinner says the region’s roll out has picked up significant pace over the past few months with over 80 percent of our eligible Canterbury population either fully vaccinated, having had a single dose or booked to receive one.

“We want to keep this momentum going and this convenient drive-through option is open late to make it easier for people to get protected against COVID-19. Everyone is welcome – bring a friend or the whole whānau.

“It’s easy: drive in, wind down the window, roll up your sleeve and get your vaccination,” says Dr Skinner.

Most clinics throughout Canterbury are now accepting drop-ins with no bookings required.

Cantabrians are urged to make use of the current capacity and receive their vaccination as soon as possible. Everyone aged 12 and over can now book a vaccination appointment or visit one of our drop-in clinics.

A full list of current clinics can be viewed here: https://vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz/covid-19-vaccination-clinics-canterbury-west-coast/

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Drop-in clinics are available in Selwyn next week

Canterbury DHB and the Selwyn District Council are pleased to be able to confirm a series of drop-in vaccination clinics for Waikirikiri Selwyn.

Three community pop-up events will take place at:

  • 12pm – 6pm Wednesday 29 September, Rolleston Community Centre
  • 12pm – 6pm Thursday 30 September, Rolleston Community Centre
  • 9:30am – 2pm Friday 1 October, Lincoln Event Centre

These complement the DHB’s drop-in vaccination clinics popping up in other districts and the existing drop-in clinic operating at The Princess Margaret Hospital in Christchurch.

No appointment is required to attend these clinics. However, we do ask that anyone attending cancels any existing vaccination appointments so that they become available to other people. The DHB will have staff on hand to assist with this if people would like to do this on the spot.

Canterbury’s Acting Senior Responsible Officer for the COVID-19 response, Ralph La Salle is encouraging people in the Selwyn District to make use of this opportunity.

“These drop-in events provide a local, comfortable and familiar environment for people to get vaccinated in the communities they live in.

“Everyone is welcome – bring a friend or the whole whānau and get yourselves protected from COVID-19 before the school holidays begin at the end of next week,” says Ralph.

Rangatahi must be twelve or older to receive a vaccination.

Thanks to the hard work of our dedicated vaccination staff and a surge in vaccinations across the region over the past month, approximately 70 percent of our eligible population has received at least a first dose vaccination.

These drop-in events aim to make vaccinations more accessible and increase protection levels in our communities. People are also able to receive their second dose vaccinations at these clinics.

Selwyn District Council Mayor Sam Broughton says the council is thrilled to be able to have played a part in getting these events confirmed for the district by providing fit for purpose venues.

“We wanted to do our part in keeping Waikirikiri Selwyn safe by providing council venues for the drop-ins.

“The best way we can all play our part in keeping Waikirikiri Selwyn safe is by getting vaccinated. I’ve had my first jab and the second one is all booked.

“I encourage everybody that can to make the most of this opportunity and get their vaccination done locally and with the convenience of not having to book,” says Sam.

Vaccinations continue to remain free and available across the Canterbury region to everyone aged 12 and over.

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The five golden rules to protect yourself against Legionella

As the Spring weather rolls in to Canterbury with the sun shining today and more good weather forecast for tomorrow, Te Mana Ora – Community and Public Health is urging gardeners to ‘gear up’ to protect themselves against Legionnaires’ disease.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, Dr Ramon Pink, says Legionnaires’ disease, caused by legionella bacteria, can start with flu-like symptoms.

“You can mistake it for the flu. Most people get high fever, muscle aches, fatigue and headache, and some get diarrhoea, vomiting and chest pains.

“In severe cases, people develop dry cough that could lead to pneumonia that requires hospitalisation,” says Dr Pink.

This year’s campaign highlights the importance of using the right gear when gardening, particularly when handling compost and potting mix.

Dr Pink says there are five easy ways to avoid Legionnaire’s disease including using the right gear for the job:

  1. Mask up and wear gloves – Use well-fitting disposable face mask and wear gloves when handling compost and potting mix.
  2. Cut (don’t rip) – Open bags of compost or potting mix carefully and away from your face using scissors.
  3. Work outside – Work with compost or potting mix in a well-ventilated outdoor area.
  4. Compost dry? Damp it down – Dampen down compost or potting mix to reduce dust.
  5. Soap it up – Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after the work is done. 

Cases of Legionnaires’ typically increase during the months of September, October and November during gardening season.

In 2019, there were 49 recorded cases of Legionnaires’ disease across Canterbury, West Coast and South Canterbury and last year, there were 52 recorded cases.

“If you are experiencing the symptoms, contact your general practice team immediately, and let them know you have been handling potting mix or compost recently,” Dr Pink says.

The illness may be mild but can sometimes be fatal. Anyone can catch Legionnaires' but people over 50 years of age, those with a long-term illness (particularly lung disease), people with low immunity, and smokers are most at risk.

More information on Legionnaires’ disease can be found on our dedicated website page here: https://www.cdhb.health.nz/gear-up-against-legionella.

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Information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 alert level 4

Updated information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 Delta Alert Level 2

Christchurch Hospital is changing its visiting hours effective from tomorrow, Thursday 23 September.

Members of the public can currently visit between 3pm and 8pm.

From tomorrow visiting hours will revert to having public visiting from 11am – 1pm, then again from 3pm to 8pm seven days a week.

This will allow whānau and friends more options when it comes to visiting loved ones in hospital.

For our staff it will mean visiting is spread over a longer time period, seven hours, instead of the current five.

Christchurch Hospital Director of Nursing, Lynne Johnson says that the hope is that this will result in calmer wards and waiting areas.

“We know that having visitors can provide a highlight in someone’s day, but it can also be draining for our sick patients, so please be mindful of that when planning your visit.

“And please, stick to the one visitor at a time rule. We need space around each patient’s bed to practice safe physical distancing when providing care for our patients.

“Under Delta Alert Level 2 we are still only allowing one visitor at a time, but we are providing the public with more flexibility to choose a time that suits them, and this change will mean our patients can have a couple of hours ‘quiet time’ between 1pm and 3pm each day,” Lynne Johnson said.

All of the current rules still apply in terms of all visitors having to scan or sign in when they enter the building. Keeping a record of who enters our facilities is mandatory – it’s not an optional extra. We need this information for potential contact tracing in the future.

A quick recap of ‘the rules’:

  • People shouldn’t come visiting our hospitals when they are sick.
  • And all visitors need to wear a mask or face-covering – please bring your own.
  • All visitors should practise good hand hygiene by using the hand gel provided when you enter and leave our facilities.
  • All visitors are expected to practice safe physical distancing. You should remain two metres away from people you don’t know.
  • One visitor at a time to visit a patient.
  • For child patients, parents/caregivers can visit at any time, and both parents/caregivers can visit at the same time.
  • Exceptions: Charge Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis. For example, exceptions will be considered on compassionate grounds including for end of life care.
  • There are also some exceptions for people with disabilities. These are set out on our website

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THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Walk-in COVID-19 vaccination appointments are now available at The Princess Margaret Hospital

Comments to be attributed to Ralph La Salle, Acting Senior Responsible Officer for the COVID-19 response in Canterbury:

In response to an increase in demand to get vaccinations sooner, a walk-in option is starting at The Princess Margaret Hospital in Cashmere from today, 20 September until 3 October.

Drop-ins are welcome anytime 2pm – 8pm, on weekdays, or 10am – 3pm on weekends. We can accommodate up to 300 drop-ins each day. This is in addition to our booked appointment capacity.

We are pleased to now be able to provide this option for people who have not yet booked their appointments and for people who’d like an earlier appointment.

We ask people who take up the chance to drop-in to The Princess Margaret Hospital remember to cancel any booked appointments no longer needed.

We recognise that school holidays are coming up and for those planning to travel, having at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine can provide them with an additional level of protection. We continue to encourage proper hand hygiene, use of masks or face-coverings and scanning.

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THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 alert level 4

Information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 Delta Alert Level 2

Please attribute comment to Dr Helen Skinner, Canterbury DHB Emergency Coordination Centre (ECC) Controller:

Following New Zealand (apart from the greater Auckland region) moving to ‘COVID-19 Delta Alert Level 2’, Canterbury DHB has made changes to its visitor restrictions – effective tomorrow, 8 September.

Under Delta Alert Level 2 visitor access for all Canterbury DHB health facilities will continue to be restricted. Please remember, limiting our interactions with others is our best defence against COVID-19.

Please don’t visit the hospital if you don’t need to.

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

  • All visitors need to scan in or sign in on arrival and provide their contact details – if you’re using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App please ensure Bluetooth tracing is turned on
  • All visitors must wear a mask or fabric face covering – please bring your own
  • All visitors are expected to practice safe physical distancing. You should remain two metres away from people you don’t know
  • Visitors who are unwell should not be entering our facilities
  • Everyone, including visitors should practise good hand hygiene.

There is further guidance and restrictions in place at individual facilities as follows.

Christchurch Hospital

  • Visiting hours for Christchurch Hospital are from 3pm – 8pm with only one person visiting at a time
  • Exceptions: Charge Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis. For example, exceptions will be considered on compassionate grounds including for end of life care
  • For children, parents/caregivers can visit at any time, and both parents/caregivers can visit at the same time
  • Anyone with planned/elective surgery or an outpatient appointment should turn up as planned – if there’s any change to your appointment we’ll contact you directly.

Christchurch Outpatients

  • Due to the ongoing need to maintain physical distancing, support people will only be allowed at Christchurch Outpatients by exception only
  • If you need a support person with you at your appointment, please call the number on your outpatient appointment letter to arrange this
  • Some outpatient appointments will continue to be carried out ‘virtually’ either over the phone, or by a video/zoom call.

Burwood Hospital

  • The visiting hours at Burwood Hospital are 11am – 7pm with only one person visiting at a time for each patient
  • Only one support person can attend with a patient for outpatient appointments and planned/elective surgery
  • Exceptions: Charge Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis. For example, exceptions will be considered on compassionate grounds including for end of life care. Please contact the ward’s Charge Nurse Manager to discuss, or the Duty Nurse Manager after hours.

Christchurch Women’s Hospital/Rangiora Health Hub maternity/Lincoln Maternity/Ashburton Maternity

  • One support person only to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment
  • Women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed two support partners for the duration of the labour and birth
  • Women who are having an elective caesarean section are allowed one support person
  • For the duration of their postnatal stay a woman can have one named support person who will be able to visit. Siblings of the new baby may accompany this person as long as they are well
  • Outpatient appointments (including Fetal Maternal Medicine) – a support person will only be permitted under specific criteria – e.g. a person’s carer/support person is required to be with them due to complex needs/diagnosis/or clinical procedures.

*Note: St Georges Maternity Unit is also following the same guidelines.

Specialist Mental Health Services at Hillmorton campus & The Princess Margaret Hospital site

  • One person may visit once per day during Hillmorton Hospital and The Princess Margaret Hospital visiting hours
  • One support person per outpatient
  • Additional people will be considered by the Clinical/Charge Nurse Manager or Duty Nurse Manager (after hours). This must be by prior arrangement to ensure that we can meet physical distancing requirements.

Ashburton Hospital

Visiting hours are as normal, but:

  • One visitor at a time – although more than one person can visit each day
  • One support person per outpatient
  • One support person to accompany someone to the Ashburton Acute Assessment Unit
  • Exceptions: Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis.

Age-Related Residential Care facilities managed by Canterbury DHB: Oxford Hospital, Darfield Hospital, Ellesmere Hospital, Waikari Hospital, Tuarangi Home

  • To ensure the safety of patients, all of whom are aged over 65, visitors to the Aged Residential Care part of this facility are only allowed by prior appointment
  • Please contact the facility to discuss with the manager. There may be a separate entrance for visitors, please check with staff.

Park and Ride

The hospital shuttle service from the Deans Ave car park is running as normal:

  • If you are unwell please don’t use the shuttle
  • Shuttle passengers are asked to use the hand sanitiser upon entry to the shuttle
  • Please scan the QR code if you have the NZ COVID Tracer App on your phone
  • The number of seats available on the shuttle will be limited to allow for physical distancing
  • It is mandatory to wear masks or face coverings on public transport at Delta Alert Level 2, with some exceptions to face covering requirements. You are encouraged to bring your own mask or face covering for the trip from the car park to your appointment.

Full details of further changes to visiting at other Canterbury DHB facilities, including cafés will be available on our website tonight.

As always, please don’t visit if you’re unwell and remember the usual public health precautions such as hand hygiene and physical distancing (wherever possible stay two metres away from people you don’t know, and one metre away from people you do know). 

If you have COVID-19 symptoms (at least one of the following symptoms: new or worsening cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, stuffy or runny nose, lost sense of smell – with or without a fever) you should contact your General Practice team or call Healthline on 0800 358 5453.

Most GP teams are offering testing if you have these symptoms. If you have symptoms and are not registered with a GP team you can attend a testing centre (which you do not need an appointment to attend). 

If you are unwell and need to see a doctor you should call your usual GP team for advice 24/7. For general health information visit www.healthinfo.org.nz.

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THIS IS AN ARCHIVED PAGE. The advice and information contained in this page may not be current and it should only be used for historical reference purposes.

Information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 alert level 4

Information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 alert level 3

Under COVID-19 Alert Level 3, visitor access to all Canterbury DHB health facilities remains restricted to enable safe physical distancing.

Limiting our interactions with those outside our bubbles is one of our best defences against COVID-19. For this reason, a no visitor policy continues to apply across all Canterbury DHB facilities.

Children under 16 and people who are unwell cannot visit under any circumstances, except to access emergency care.

Under Alert Level 3, the following exceptions apply and a person may enter our facilities:

  • to visit a person receiving end of life care
  • to provide support to a person with a disability
  • to enable one parent/caregiver to be with a child who is in hospital
  • CHOC – (Child Haematology Oncology Centre), one parent to accompany/stay with each patient
  • as a parent visiting the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
  • ICU – one nominated person from the patient’s bubble may visit once per day during visiting hours and be the only visitor for the duration of the patient’s stay
  • Maternity:
    • one support person only to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment
    • women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed two support partners from their bubble for the duration of the labour and birth
    • women can have one named support person from their bubble for the duration of their postnatal stay
    • LMCs may visit women postnatally in our maternity units.
  • Specialist Mental Health Services – one support person to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment or urgent care

All of the above remain at the discretion of the Charge Nurse/Midwife Manager for the ward or service. Visitors will not be allowed in wards caring for patients in isolation. Additional exceptions may be made on compassionate grounds.

Where these visits do take place, all visitors are required to wear a mask or face-covering at all times, unless they have a physical or mental condition that makes them exempt.

Please scan in using the QR code, wherever you go using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App, and ensure Bluetooth is turned on within the app – this means you’ll receive alerts if you’ve been exposed to a case.

Elective surgeries and outpatient appointments

If your appointment or elective (planned) surgery was scheduled on Wednesday 1 September onwards please attend at the time originally advised, unless you have been contacted by us to advise that it has been rescheduled.

If your outpatient appointment or planned surgery was scheduled prior to 1 September, please wait for us to get in touch to advise of your rescheduled appointment.

Exemption card for face coverings 

We know that some people who have a disability or health condition may not be able to wear a face covering safely or comfortably. If you cannot wear one, you can get an exemption card. You can show your exemption card when needed, for example to a bus driver. 

You can request a card from the Disabled Persons Assembly NZ by contacting them on 04 801 9100 or at info@dpa.org.nz.

DHB Aged Residential Care facilities
The no visitors rule applies. However, family visits for palliative care residents who are receiving end of life care and do not have COVID-19 will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Park and Ride

The hospital shuttle service from the Deans Ave car park will resume tomorrow. Shuttles will run from Monday-Friday 6:15am-8.30pm daily, to and from the Christchurch Hospital main entrance and Waipapa, and to and from the Outpatients Building until 6pm.The following applies:

  • all people using the shuttle will be required to wear a mask or face-covering unless medically exempt
  • a limit of five passengers per shuttle will be observed to allow greater physical distancing
  • hand sanitiser will be available to use as you enter and leave the shuttle
  • an enhanced cleaning schedule is in place during shuttle operational hours
  • please don’t use the shuttle if you are sick. You should not be visiting any of our facilities if you are unwell.

Cafés

Christchurch Campus:

  • Great Escape Café         Open to staff only with coffee and pre-packaged food available         usual opening hours
  • Willow Lane                     Open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday               08:00 to 14:00
  • Kanuka                            Open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday               08:00 to 14:00
  • PeaBerry, Parkside and Christchurch Women’s Café will remain closed under level 3

Ashburton Hospital Café                Open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday                              08:00 to 16:00

Hillmorton Avon Café                      Open for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Friday                             11:00 to 13:00

Burwood Travis Courtyard Café      Open to staff only for coffee and pre-packaged food, Monday to Sunday        08:30 to 15.30

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Page last updated: 8 September 2021

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