Hospital visitors don’t need a Vaccine Pass, but must wear a surgical/medical paper mask. Fabric face coverings are no longer acceptable. See our COVID-19 pages for visiting guidelines, COVID-19 tests current case numbers in regions of Canterbury and care in the community advice. See for info about vaccinations.

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

Last updated:
19 April 2022

For visitors to all facilities effective from Tuesday 19 April 2022

With the change to the ORANGE Traffic Light setting, Canterbury DHB is easing its visitor policy in recognition of the fact we have passed the peak of the current Omicron outbreak and case numbers are slowly reducing.

The following visitor restrictions are now in place for all Canterbury DHB hospitals and health facilities:

  • One adult visitor may be accompanied by no more than one child over the age of 12 per patient in the hospital at any given time, except where stated otherwise in the ‘exceptions’ section below.  No children under 12 and those 12 and over must be accompanied by an adult and wear a medical mask.
  • Visitors or support people should not visit our facilities if they are unwell.
  • Surgical/medical masks must be worn at all times at all Canterbury DHB sites and will be provided if people don’t have them.
  • Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must be used.

By adhering to these conditions, 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 (ie more than one visitor) where a trusted whānau member provides 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 – 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 support people, and women on the Maternity Ward are allowed one support person for the duration of their stay in our facilities at Christchurch Womens 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 children are allowed to visit.
  • 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, following a supervised negative RAT result)
  • Children who are inpatients, one other visitor (other than a parent or caregiver) is able to visit in consultation with the nurse in charge.
  • 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.

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.

Face covering exemption cards

The Exemptions Team at the Ministry of Health is now responsible for processing requests for Face Covering Communication Cards.

Updated information about mask wearing, and how to request an exemption card can now be found here. People unable to request an exemption card online can call 0800 28 29 26 and select option 2, or text 8988

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

More COVID-19 information

Today marks last board meeting for Canterbury DHB

Thursday 16 June 2022Canterbury DHB News3 minutes to read

Final Board Meeting at Canterbury DHB

Final Board Meeting at Canterbury DHB

Canterbury DHB’s board met for the last time on Thursday 16 June as the transition to Health New Zealand and the Māori Health Authority on July 1 draws closer.

Canterbury DHB Chief Executive Dr Peter Bramley says that its Board has been focused on creating a health system and community where people take greater responsibility for their own health, stay well in their homes and communities, and receive timely and appropriate care.

“I would like to thank each and every one of our board members for their service to the people of Canterbury to make sure their health needs are met, particularly Jo Kane and Andrew Dickerson who are our current longest serving board members,” says Dr Peter Bramley.

“This DHB has been through a lot in the past ten years through natural disaster and tragedy, but it has always been incredibly progressive and innovative. Our people do an amazing job in supporting the healthcare of our community every day and in times of challenge, they have gone above and beyond.”

“We operate as an integrated health system in Canterbury and I believe that the strong relationships that we have with our primary care, private, community and NGO colleagues will help us immensely in our transition to Health NZ.”

Canterbury DHB Board Chair Sir John Hansen says that the people of the Canterbury Health System have had to respond in extraordinary ways to the challenges of the past few years, particularly the Canterbury Earthquakes, the Mosque terrorist attacks and the COVID-19 pandemic of the last two years.

“I am proud of what we have achieved through our time in the Board, particularly our preparations and response for COVID-19 and our focus on infrastructure such as opening Waipapa and getting funding for the redevelopment of the Hillmorton campus and the new Central City Birthing Unit. We are leaving Canterbury DHB in a strong position as it transitions to Health New Zealand and the Māori Health Authority. I personally extended my thanks to all who made this possible at today’s meeting.”

The second biggest DHB by population, eight different boards over the years have served communities stretching from Ashburton in the south to Kekerengu (north of Kaikoura) across to Arthurs Pass in the West, along with the Chatham Islands. Canterbury DHB has over 11,000 staff, with a total of 23,500 health workers in our wider health system.



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Page last updated: 17 June 2022

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