Tuesday 18 August 2020Media release3 minutes to read
Canterbury DHB is reminding people to wear a mask when visiting a hospital or health centre while the region is under COVID-19 Alert Level 2.
The official advice is for people to wear a mask in situations where keeping a safe physical distance from others might be difficult. To stay safe, carry a mask with you whenever you leave the house. If you are taking the hospital shuttle from the Park and Ride to the health precinct, then a mask provides an added layer of protection.
“Please bring your own mask with you when visiting our hospitals,” says Chief Medical Officer Dr Sue Nightingale.
“We have a good supply of disposable masks at the moment but with thousands of people accessing our facilities on a daily basis, it is important for us to use our supplies wisely.”
Staff working at the hospital follow the Ministry of Health’s guidance on personal protective equipment in the workplace. Those working in non-clinical areas or who can maintain safe physical distance from others are not required to wear masks.
Although there is no community transmission of COVID-19 in Canterbury, if people can’t practice safe physical distancing, masks are recommended to provide protection against COVID-19, along with good hand hygiene practices and cough and sneeze etiquette.
Face masks can be either fabric reusable (washable), or a single use disposable face mask. These can be purchased online, from supermarkets or pharmacies or you can make your own fabric reusable (washable) face masks. WHO advice on when and how to use masks including how to make your own can be found on the WHO website.
It’s up to you whether you make your own mask or buy disposable surgical masks. Face coverings such as a bandana or a scarf can also be used if you do not have a mask.
If you’re travelling to hospital via public transport, remember to cover your nose and mouth with a mask or scarf. The Ministry of Health have provided advice on their website for the public regarding wearing masks in the community. The Ministry also has advice on how to use a face mask safely.
“When you enter any of our buildings, check in using the Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 Tracer App at the front door. This is to help you record where you have been and when,” says Dr Nightingale.
“And, remember, please don’t visit any of our hospitals or health centres if you don’t need to and always stay home if you’re sick.”
Page last updated: 25 September 2020
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