Hospital visitors must wear a medical paper face mask. Fabric face coverings are not acceptable. Expand this message for more detailed information about hospital visiting guidelines.

Last updated:
16 September 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 Friday 16 September 2022

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

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

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

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

Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding as our staff work hard to protect and care for some of the most vulnerable in our community.

Visiting patients with COVID-19

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

All of our Hospitals

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

All visitors must wear a medical mask.

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

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

More COVID-19 information

Infection Prevention and Control Service


Healthcare-associated infections and the spread of harmful pathogens across the Canterbury Healthcare System are minimised through excellence in IPC practice. There is a deeply embedded culture among all Canterbury DHB (CDHB) staff whereby best practice to minimise infection risk to patients, staff and visitors to healthcare facilities is the accepted norm.


The IPC Service delivers quality infection prevention and control services to minimise the occurrence and spread of infection across the Canterbury Healthcare System. It promotes excellence in IPC practice and strategically deploys its resources to improve safety for patients, staff and visitors to CDHB health care facilities.

Infection Prevention and Control Executive Committee

Oversight and governance for the IPC Service is provided by the Infection Prevention and Control Executive Committee (IPCEC). Membership includes a senior Infectious Disease Physician (Chairperson), a senior Clinical Microbiologist, a senior Public Health Physician, the Clinical Director – Infection Prevention and Control, the Nursing Director – Infection Prevention and Control, a senior Primary Care General Practitioner and a senior Primary Care Nursing Leader.

The role of the IPCEC is to set strategic priorities and guide action in the prevention and control of infection to improve and sustain quality of care across the Canterbury Health System and to keep patients, staff and visitors to health care facilities safe.

IPC Service Operational Team

IPCEC strategic priorities and action plans are implemented by the IPC Service Operational Team across CDHB including Ashburton and Rural Health Services, Burwood Hospital (Older Persons Health and Rehabilitation Service), Community Services, Medical & Surgical Services, Specialist Mental Health Service, and Woman’s and Child Health.

This team is led by the Clinical Director – Infection Prevention and Control and the Nursing Director – Infection Prevention and Control.

Clinical Nurse Specialists and Registered Nurses provide day-to-day advice on infection prevention and control measures to ensure the safety of patients, staff and visitors to CDHB facilities. They guide and support CDHB staff to implement appropriate IPC practices in their work area to minimise risk of infection transmission.


Phone: 03 378 6966 

Out-of-hours advice is provided by the Medical Microbiologist on-call, who can be reached via the Christchurch Hospital switchboard 03 364 0640

Page last updated: 28 June 2022

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