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

Treat all flood water as contaminated & keep up to date on the safety of your drinking water

Monday 31 May 2021Media release4 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.
Adverse weather and flood-related public health advice from Canterbury DHB

Adverse weather and flood-related public health advice from Canterbury DHB

As flood waters have continued to rise in many areas throughout Canterbury, a number of drinking water supplies have been placed under boil water and/or conserve water notices. It’s important to follow this advice to protect your health.

Please keep up to date with the latest alerts regarding drinking water for your area, by checking with your local District Council, as they have the most up to date information.

For the latest updates on drinking water, ‘like’ your local District Council’s Facebook page, or check the latest news on their website:

Hurunui:

Waimakariri:

Christchurch and Banks Peninsula:

Selwyn:

Ashburton:

Timaru:

Mackenzie:

Contaminated flood waters

Avoid contact with flood waters if you can and assume they will be contaminated by sewage.

There is also a danger of injury from floating objects and hazards hidden below the surface. If there are power outages in your area, be wary of power lines that might be down and be even more hazardous in wet conditions.

If you do come into contact with flood waters, change out of any wet clothes and shoes and put them aside to be washed later. Wash skin that has come into contact with flood waters, and wash your hands as soon as you reasonably can – or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser.

Further advice on safely cleaning up after flooding can be found here.

Emergency services, hospital/health centres and appointments

If you require emergency care, call 111 service and ambulances are operating, subject to changing road conditions. The Emergency Department at Waipapa, ambulances and Urgent Care Clinics (24hr Surgery, Moorhouse Medical Centre and Riccarton Clinic) are all open. Our rural hospitals are open for visiting and maternity services are operating as usual.

Please note: all Outpatient appointments at Ashburton Hospital have been postponed today, and tomorrow (Tuesday 1 June) – apart from fracture clinics. Medical day unit and chemotherapy appointments at Ashburton Hospital will also be postponed tomorrow. Individuals are being contacted wherever possible to let them know.

If you have an Outpatient appointment at any other Canterbury DHB hospital or health centre tomorrow (or while the weather disruption lasts), please assume it will go ahead unless you are contacted individually to say otherwise. If you cannot make your appointment, please let us know as soon as you can by calling the number on your appointment letter.

Food safety

If you lose power at any stage, avoid opening your fridge and freezers unnecessarily. If frozen food has been defrosted but has been kept chilled, it should be used as soon as possible – as if it had been bought fresh.

Do not refreeze high risk items such as meat, fish and poultry. If you think these food items may have been at room temperature for two or more hours, do not eat them – if in doubt, throw it out.

General health and wellbeing

Please continue to check on neighbours and vulnerable people near where you live. Check they have supplies, including medications, and share with them the advice on water and food safety.

If you need to see a GP and have trouble getting there, phone them for advice. Even if they are closed, your call will be put through to a nurse who can advise you on what to do. In an emergency, always call 111.

If you require essential prescription medications and your supply is running low, call your normal GP of community pharmacy for advice.

Stay ready and informed

Check and restock your emergency kit for future events:

Here is a link with flood-specific advice: https://getready.govt.nz/emergency/floods/

ENDS

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Page last updated: 19 August 2021

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