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.

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

High Court ruling will help reduce alcohol harm

Friday 11 November 2016Media 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.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Alistair Humphrey is welcoming a High Court ruling as a landmark case that will help reduce alcohol harm nationally.

Dr Humphrey had appealed a decision by the Alcohol Regulatory and Licensing Authority, which had permitted South City New World and Bishopdale New World supermarkets to display alcohol at the end of supermarket aisles, reversing an earlier decision by the Christchurch District Licensing Committee.

The Christchurch District Licensing Committee had initially restricted the alcohol display area at Bishopdale New World Supermarket after considering submissions from the Police, the Medical Officer of Health and the District Licensing Inspector.

Dr Humphrey says the ruling makes it clear that under the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012, supermarkets and grocery stores must restrict the display of alcohol to a single area helping achieve the purpose of the Act, which is to minimise harm caused by excessive consumption of alcohol.

“The decision recognises the harm exposure to alcohol causes our community. Alcohol does cause harm, and the Act is there not to ban it, but to help minimise the harm it causes,” he says.

“Justice Gendall's careful and detailed decision acknowledges this and sets a legal precedent which supermarkets and grocery stores in New Zealand will need to consider closely before applying for off licences.”

Dr Humphrey says the sales of supermarket products are boosted by measures such as shelf positioning and end-of-aisle displays, and the impact of such measures on impulse purchases like alcohol are even more pronounced.

“The more people are exposed to alcohol, the more they buy; the more they buy, the more they consume; the more they consume the greater the harm.

“The cost of alcohol harm in New Zealand is more than $5 billion a year, but our revenue from excise tax is a little over $1billion[1]​. It seems unfair that the ordinary New Zealand tax payer should subsidise the alcohol industry.”

Dr Humphrey has commended the design of some new supermarkets, which are being built in a way that is helping to reduce alcohol exposure.

“It's really pleasing to see that some of the new supermarkets being built are taking their responsibilities seriously and building completely separate areas for selling alcohol. This ruling will help make this kind of separation the norm in New Zealand,” Dr Humphrey says.

Read the ruling from the High Court on alcohol displays in Christchurch supermarkets.

[1] Slack A, Nana G, Webster M, Stokes F, Wu, J. 2009. Costs of harmful alcohol and other drug use. Final Report to the Ministry of Health and ACC. (BERL report)


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Page last updated: 19 October 2022

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