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

Last updated:
13 March 2023


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.

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

Vaccination programme re-prioritisation implemented in Canterbury

Monday 14 March 2022Media release2 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.

Some Canterbury health services are being deferred as DHB staffing impacted by COVID-19

Vaccination programme re-prioritisation implemented in Canterbury

The impact of Omicron has led to re-prioritisation of the COVID-19 vaccination programme according to Canterbury DHB’s Emergency Coordination Centre Incident Controller, Dr Helen Skinner.

“We need to maximise limited staffing resources and focus our resource on reaching priority areas and at-risk populations where booster uptake and children immunisation is lagging behind,” says Dr Skinner.

“Planning for mobile or outreach vaccination events over the next three to four weeks has started.  

“We will also continue to work closely with our primary care, Pasifika and Māori providers to support their resourcing needs so they can continue to deliver vaccinations.”

As a result two DHB-run vaccination sites will close: Christchurch Arena Drive-Through from tomorrow, 15 March, and Orchard Road Vaccination Centre which will likely close in three weeks.

“The few people booked at the drive through have been rebooked. For Orchard Road, over the next few weeks we will only be vaccinating those already booked or supporting them to re-book at other vaccination sites,” says Dr Skinner.

She says it is expected that the closing of the Orchard Road Vaccination Centre and the Christchurch Arena Drive-Through will have minimal impact on the delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations as there will still be more than 140 primary care clinics continuing to deliver vaccinations across Canterbury. 

“We are also looking at establishing a smaller drive through vaccination site and our mobile vaccination events will consider outdoor locations as a priority to ensure we have good ventilation, especially in the current environment where Omicron is widespread.”

The existing RAT collection site at the Christchurch Arena will continue to operate.



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Page last updated: 29 March 2022

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