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

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

Last updated:
23 January 2022

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

  1. All visitors need to scan in using the COVID-19 Tracer App or sign in on arrival and provide their contact details
  2. If you’re using the COVID-19 Tracer App, please ensure Bluetooth tracing is turned on
  3. All visitors must wear a surgical/medical mask. Fabric face coverings are no longer acceptable
  4. All visitors are expected to practice safe physical distancing. You should remain two metres away from people you don’t know
  5. Everyone, including visitors should practise good hand hygiene
  6. Visitors who are unwell should not be entering our facilities.

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

More COVID-19 information:

Canterbury and West Coast DHBs planning for 19 August NZNO and MERAS strikes well underway

Friday 13 August 2021Canterbury DHB News4 minutes to read

Update 18 August 2021: Please note that this strike notice has been withdrawn.

Canterbury and the West Coast DHBs are implementing contingency plans for the NZNO and MERAS strike action next week

Canterbury and the West Coast DHBs are implementing contingency plans for the strike action planned by New Zealand Nurses’ Organisation (NZNO) and Midwifery Employee Representation & Advisory Service (MERAS) members on Thursday 19 August.

  • NZNO members are striking for eight hours between 11am and 7pm.
  • MERAS midwives are striking for 12 hours between 8am and 8pm.

NZNO and MERAS members include many of the nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants working for DHBs as well as some working elsewhere in health.

Dr Peter Bramley, Chief Executive for both DHBs, says the number one priority is patient safety, closely followed by minimising the impact on patients.

“Our contingency plans are about rescheduling what isn’t urgent and reducing the demand on the staff who will be working on those days.

“111 calls will be responded to as usual and people should access urgent and emergency care as they normally would – but you can expect staff to be stretched and wait times to be longer,” says Dr Bramley.

Women who are pregnant should contact their Lead Maternity Carer as they would normally if they have concerns or suspect they are in labour.

Acute services will also remain available throughout the period of the planned strike, such as unplanned or emergency surgery, all intensive care units, Oncology and the Renal Dialysis unit and all maternity units. We have agreed plans with the local union representatives to provide life-preserving services (LPS) to ensure patients receive safe and appropriate care during the strike period in all of our areas.

“There are close to 5000 nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants at Canterbury DHB and an estimated 250 or so on the West Coast who may strike. The strikes are expected to cause significant disruption to non-urgent services in both DHB areas and could mean longer waits for acute or emergency care with fewer staff working.

“We apologise in advance for any inconvenience and distress the strike action may cause, while respecting our staff’s right to take industrial action and acknowledging the valued role they play in our health system,” Dr Bramley says.

We have begun contacting people with surgery or outpatient appointments scheduled for just before or during the strike period, and we’re rebooking these appointments to ensure there is sufficient capacity to continue to provide emergency care during the strikes, and to reduce the demand on staff.

Similarly, emergency caesareans will continue to be available to women who need them, but elective (planned) caesareans and inductions of labour will not go ahead unless clinically indicated.

“Our advice to women due on or near the day of the strikes is to stick to the plan you have with your LMC midwife or the hospital clinic. If a maternity-related booking or appointment with us needs to change, we will let you know. If you go into labour, contact your LMC to come in to be assessed.

“Urgent procedures and non-deferrable surgery, such as cancer surgery will be prioritised to go ahead during the planned strike period on a case-by-case basis,” Dr Bramley says.

“We will also be discharging as many patients as is safe ahead of the strike period, reducing the number of people in our care in anticipation of our reduced workforce for the period of the strike.

“We need to ensure those working during that period are available to care for patients with high and complex needs, as well as those needing emergency care,” he says.

Useful numbers for contacting the appropriate service on the West Coast can be found here: http://www.cdhb.health.nz/Hospitals-Services/hospitals/Pages/default.aspx

Phone numbers for individual Canterbury Hospital sites can be found here:http://www.cdhb.health.nz/Hospitals-Services/hospitals/Pages/default.aspx

We’d like to thank our Canterbury and West Coast communities in advance, for their understanding and support during this period of strike action.

ENDS

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Page last updated: 18 August 2021

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