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

Last updated:
13 March 2023

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.

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 to 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

Updated visitor guidance under COVID-19 Alert Level 3 for Canterbury DHB facilities

Wednesday 29 April 2020Media release3 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.
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 as we navigate our way through COVID-19 alert level three

As we settle into Alert Level 3, sticking to our bubble and staying home unless you need to go out is still our best defence against the spread of COVID-19, so visitor restrictions still apply at all of our facilities, however some rules have been relaxed.

For most inpatient ward areas at Christchurch Hospital, we are now allowing one nominated person from a patient’s ‘bubble’ to visit once per day during visiting hours. This person becomes the nominated visitor for the duration of a patient’s stay.

For Burwood Hospital and our other facilities who provide treatment and care for older people there is still no visiting for most areas, with exceptions made for end of life care and the Spinal Unit at Burwood, where one nominated visitor is allowed.

Visitors are still not allowed in high risk areas where our most vulnerable patients are or where patients are in isolation. Exceptions may be made on compassionate grounds on a case by case basis including for end of life care for patients who are not COVID-19 positive.

People who are self-isolating or who are unwell should remain at home and should not visit.

Visiting for maternity services under Alert Level 3 has changed. Women who have had an elective caesarean section can have one support person. Women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed two nominated support people from their extended bubble for the duration of the labour and birth. For the duration of postnatal stays, women can have one named support person from the same bubble who can visit once per day for any length of time between 10am and 8pm.

Details of every visitor will be recorded upon arrival. This is to ensure that once nominated, only that person visits from then on and to allow rapid contact tracing if anyone they have been in contact with is later confirmed as having COVID-19.

“Practicing safe physical distancing, good hand hygiene and covering coughs or sneezes are all still vitally important,” says Canterbury DHB Emergency Coordination Centre Incident Controller, Dr Sue Nightingale.

“Under Alert Level 3, for most inpatient ward areas one person per patient can visit or support a member of your whānau who is unwell, as long as you follow the rules which have been put in place to protect you and others. Some higher risk areas do not allow visiting at Alert Level 3, and we are still asking people not to visit the hospital or health centre if they don’t need to,” Sue Nightingale says.

This updated guidance is effective at all Canterbury DHB facilities from tomorrow, Thursday 30 April.

For more information on the visitor guidance for each Canterbury DHB health facility, please visit our website:



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Page last updated: 30 July 2020

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