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

Last updated:
13 March 2023


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Visiting patients with COVID-19

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

All of our Hospitals

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

All visitors are recommended to wear a medical face mask.

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

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

More COVID-19 information

Additional screening for patients being admitted to Canterbury DHB hospital and maternity facilities

Friday 25 February 2022Media release2 minutes to read

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 COVID-19 testing facility in Christchurch

Additional screening for patients being admitted to Canterbury DHB hospital and maternity facilities

With Aotearoa New Zealand moving to Phase 3 of the Omicron response and rapid antigen tests (RATs) being rolled out across Canterbury, we have the opportunity to put in place additional screening measures to further protect our vulnerable patients.

From today, Friday 25 February 2022 patients being admitted to Canterbury DHB hospital and maternity facilities will be tested for COVID-19.

Canterbury DHB’s COVID-19 ECC Incident Controller Dr Helen Skinner, says dependent on the result of the test, patients will be accommodated in different areas of the hospital, as we have dedicated spaces to support those with COVID-19.

“This allows us to reduce the chance of COVID-19 spread within our hospitals and helps us determine which PPE should be worn by staff when treating patients,” says Dr Skinner.

Recently we have noticed a decrease in the number of people attending our hospitals.

“We want to reassure our community that the Canterbury Health System has appropriate protocols and procedures in place to manage respiratory infections– including cases of COVID-19.

“Our hospitals 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,” Dr Skinner says.

The DHB’s current visitor policy can be viewed here. This includes the requirement for a visitor card and surgical/medical masks being worn at all times at all Canterbury DHB sites by approved visitors.

There are masks available in reception areas.



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Page last updated: 30 March 2022

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