ORANGE

Hospital visiting guidelines updated 20 July 2022: Hospital visitors must wear a surgical/medical paper mask. Fabric face coverings are no longer acceptable. See our COVID-19 pages for detailed information about hospital visiting guidelines, COVID-19 tests and care in the community advice. See www.vaccinatecanterburywestcoast.nz for information about vaccinations.

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

Last updated:
20 July 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 Wednesday 20 July 2022

With the recent resurgence in cases in Canterbury, largely due to the Omicron BA.5 subvariant we are seeing an increase in demand right across the health system. Presentations to our Christchurch ED and Ashburton’s AAU are higher than ever and admission rates are high, which means we have a shortage of resourced beds.

Recently, we have seen too many unwell people coming to visit someone in hospital and too many that cannot or will not wear a medical mask. This increases the risk to vulnerable people in hospital. For these reasons we need to everything we can to minimise these risks.

We have therefore tightened visitor restrictions for all Te Whatu Ora Waitaha Canterbury hospitals and health facilities.

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

  • One visitor per patient in the hospital at any given time, except where stated otherwise in the ‘exceptions’ section below.
  • No visitors under 16 to any part of our facilities.
  • No visitors to COVID +ve patients other than in exceptional circumstances.
  • No eating or drinking at the bedside or anywhere other than cafes or areas designated for eating/drinking, as taking your mask off puts patients at risk.
  • Visitors or support people must not visit our facilities if they are unwell with cold or flu-like symptoms (even if they have tested negative) or have had a recent tummy bug.
  • Do not visit if you are COVID +ve or a household contact of someone who has tested positive
  • Surgical/medical masks must be worn at all times at all sites and will be provided if people don’t have them. Mask exemptions do not apply in our facilities – people who cannot tolerate a mask cannot visit at this time.
  • Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must be used.

By sticking to the rules above, you help keep our patients, staff, other visitors and yourself safe. We 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.

Exceptions to the ‘one visitor’ policy

  • Exceptions can apply in some circumstances where trusted whānau members provide assistance, reassurance and other support for therapeutic care or on compassionate grounds – please talk to the ward’s Charge Nurse to discuss this before you come to hospital to visit. For whānau with an essential support role as a Partner in Care – again, please check with the ward’s Charge Nurse before you come to hospital to visit.
  • People attending Christchurch ED or Ashburton AAU can have one support person with them.
  • Women in labour and in the birthing suite can have two named support people + their community LMC/midwife if they have one – for the duration of the birth only. All other women on the Maternity Ward are allowed one support person for the duration of their stay in our facilities at Christchurch Women’s Hospital and other maternity units. Only one support person can be with each woman in the maternity ward, and one support person for maternity clinic appointments. No under 16s are allowed to visit or attend appointments.
  • Parents/caregivers can be with their baby in NICU.
  • Parents/caregivers are able to be with their child in hospital (Except Children’s Haematology and Oncology Day patients where only one parent or caregiver is permitted).
  • People requiring support when attending an appointment can have one support person. Please let the relevant service know if you need this so they are able to accommodate your request.

Visiting patients with COVID-19

  • To avoid them becoming infected with COVID-19 and passing it one, visitors to COVID-19 positive patients will not be allowed except in extenuating circumstances – by prior agreement with the Charge Nurse Manager only, and wearing an N95 mask.
  • Other methods of communication will be facilitated e.g. phone, facetime, zoom etc.

You must NOT visit the hospital if you

  • are a household contact of a COVID-19 positive case
  • are COVID-19 positive
  • Have a cold or flu/COVID-19-like symptoms (even if you are testing negative for COVID-19)

Exceptions for people with disabilities

An exception will be made for people with disabilities who are in hospital or have to attend an outpatient appointment – where they need a support person to access health services. For example, a sign language interpreter, support person for someone with a learning disability, or someone to assist with mobility. The support person is in addition to the one permitted visitor.

Everyone visiting our facilities must wear a mask, no exceptions

While we appreciate that some people have legitimate reasons for being exempt from wearing a mask and may even have an official card to confirm this, people who cannot or will not wear a mask cannot visit someone in hospital or attend hospital, other than to access healthcare treatment*. This is another measure to minimise the risk to vulnerable patients.

*healthcare treatment includes: Emergency Department care, outpatient appointments, surgery or a procedure. 

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

More COVID-19 information

Government gives green light to new Christchurch Outpatients

Monday 1 February 2016Media release3 minutes to read

Oxford Central

Oxford Tuam

​​​​The Minister of Health, Hon. Jonathan Coleman and Minister of Finance, Hon. Bill English, have given the go ahead to the developed design stage of a new outpatient facility.

The new outpatient facility will be completed in 2018 and is to be located in the Health Precinct on St Andrew's triangle, directly opposite Christchurch Hospital.

It will be five storeys high and will provide 10,500m2 of state-of-the-art facilities for outpatient and other clinical services.

The design process has already made rapid progress, with the early concepts and preliminary design completed in just two months. The next step is to begin the developed design (detail of room layouts etc.) during February 2016.

Murray Cleverley, Canterbury DHB Board chair and member of the Hospitals Redevelopment Partnership Group, says he is delighted about this very welcome announcement.

“A completed new facility will be major achievement as part of the bigger Christchurch Hospital redevelopment picture,” Mr Cleverley says.

“This is a very auspicious start to the New Year and another really important step in addressing the legacy of disrupted services in the aftermath of the earthquakes – to have received ministerial signoff is a great way to start the New Year.”

Mr Cleverley says the new outpatient facility will finally bring together again a number of general consultation clinics and provide for the delivery of services such as diabetes, endocrine, ophthalmology and dental.

“These services have been dispersed across the Christchurch Hospital campus, with dental at Hillmorton Hospital, since the Canterbury quakes significantly damaged a number of health facilities,” he says.

Currently most outpatient clinics are temporarily housed in Hagley Outpatients, a facility built in just 100 post-quake days. Once the new outpatients' facility is open, part of the Hagley Outpatients building will be relocated, as planned, to find a second lease of life as part of Rangiora's new Health Hub.

Dr Rob Ojala, Canterbury DHB clinical lead for facilities redevelopment, says the emphasis is for this facility to support integrated specialist community care.

“This will help patients gain access to the specialist care they need outside of the more traditional hospital-based care environment,” Rob Ojala says.

Mr Cleverley says the funding for the new outpatient facility will be a combination of money received through Canterbury DHB's insurance settlement, together with additional funding from the Government's Hospitals' Redevelopment budget, which is also contributing to the $650m plus cost of new facilities at Burwood Hospital and the Acute Services Building on the Christchurch Hospital campus.

“I want to thank all of the staff including clinical teams, and contractors who have already made significant contributions in terms of their time, commitment and expertise to get us to this stage,” Mr Cleverley says.

Canterbury DHB has a number of major construction projects underway at present, with a new Integrated Family Health Centre in Kaikoura; a new Health Hub in Rangiora; the $650 million redevelopments at Burwood and Christchurch; and a new operating theatre and acute assessment unit underway in Ashburton, he says.

“All these new facilities will support staff to provide the very best care, and each one is a major morale boost for both staff and patients who have had to ‘make-do' with substandard and temporary facilities for long enough already.”

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Page last updated: 19 December 2018

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