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

Canterbury DHB makes changes to visiting at its facilities under Delta Alert Level 2

Tuesday 7 September 2021Media release6 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.

Information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 alert level 4

Information for visitors and patients at COVID-19 Delta Alert Level 2

Please attribute comment to Dr Helen Skinner, Canterbury DHB Emergency Coordination Centre (ECC) Controller:

Following New Zealand (apart from the greater Auckland region) moving to ‘COVID-19 Delta Alert Level 2’, Canterbury DHB has made changes to its visitor restrictions – effective tomorrow, 8 September.

Under Delta Alert Level 2 visitor access for all Canterbury DHB health facilities will continue to be restricted. Please remember, limiting our interactions with others is our best defence against COVID-19.

Please don’t visit the hospital if you don’t need to.

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

  • All visitors need to scan in or sign in on arrival and provide their contact details – if you’re using the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App please ensure Bluetooth tracing is turned on
  • All visitors must wear a mask or fabric face covering – please bring your own
  • All visitors are expected to practice safe physical distancing. You should remain two metres away from people you don’t know
  • Visitors who are unwell should not be entering our facilities
  • Everyone, including visitors should practise good hand hygiene.

There is further guidance and restrictions in place at individual facilities as follows.

Christchurch Hospital

  • Visiting hours for Christchurch Hospital are from 3pm – 8pm with only one person visiting at a time
  • Exceptions: Charge Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis. For example, exceptions will be considered on compassionate grounds including for end of life care
  • For children, parents/caregivers can visit at any time, and both parents/caregivers can visit at the same time
  • Anyone with planned/elective surgery or an outpatient appointment should turn up as planned – if there’s any change to your appointment we’ll contact you directly.

Christchurch Outpatients

  • Due to the ongoing need to maintain physical distancing, support people will only be allowed at Christchurch Outpatients by exception only
  • If you need a support person with you at your appointment, please call the number on your outpatient appointment letter to arrange this
  • Some outpatient appointments will continue to be carried out ‘virtually’ either over the phone, or by a video/zoom call.

Burwood Hospital

  • The visiting hours at Burwood Hospital are 11am – 7pm with only one person visiting at a time for each patient
  • Only one support person can attend with a patient for outpatient appointments and planned/elective surgery
  • Exceptions: Charge Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis. For example, exceptions will be considered on compassionate grounds including for end of life care. Please contact the ward’s Charge Nurse Manager to discuss, or the Duty Nurse Manager after hours.

Christchurch Women’s Hospital/Rangiora Health Hub maternity/Lincoln Maternity/Ashburton Maternity

  • One support person only to accompany someone presenting for acute assessment
  • Women in labour in a maternity facility are allowed two support partners for the duration of the labour and birth
  • Women who are having an elective caesarean section are allowed one support person
  • For the duration of their postnatal stay a woman can have one named support person who will be able to visit. Siblings of the new baby may accompany this person as long as they are well
  • Outpatient appointments (including Fetal Maternal Medicine) – a support person will only be permitted under specific criteria – e.g. a person’s carer/support person is required to be with them due to complex needs/diagnosis/or clinical procedures.

*Note: St Georges Maternity Unit is also following the same guidelines.

Specialist Mental Health Services at Hillmorton campus & The Princess Margaret Hospital site

  • One person may visit once per day during Hillmorton Hospital and The Princess Margaret Hospital visiting hours
  • One support person per outpatient
  • Additional people will be considered by the Clinical/Charge Nurse Manager or Duty Nurse Manager (after hours). This must be by prior arrangement to ensure that we can meet physical distancing requirements.

Ashburton Hospital

Visiting hours are as normal, but:

  • One visitor at a time – although more than one person can visit each day
  • One support person per outpatient
  • One support person to accompany someone to the Ashburton Acute Assessment Unit
  • Exceptions: Nurse Managers can assess requests on a case by case basis.

Age-Related Residential Care facilities managed by Canterbury DHB: Oxford Hospital, Darfield Hospital, Ellesmere Hospital, Waikari Hospital, Tuarangi Home

  • To ensure the safety of patients, all of whom are aged over 65, visitors to the Aged Residential Care part of this facility are only allowed by prior appointment
  • Please contact the facility to discuss with the manager. There may be a separate entrance for visitors, please check with staff.

Park and Ride

The hospital shuttle service from the Deans Ave car park is running as normal:

  • If you are unwell please don’t use the shuttle
  • Shuttle passengers are asked to use the hand sanitiser upon entry to the shuttle
  • Please scan the QR code if you have the NZ COVID Tracer App on your phone
  • The number of seats available on the shuttle will be limited to allow for physical distancing
  • It is mandatory to wear masks or face coverings on public transport at Delta Alert Level 2, with some exceptions to face covering requirements. You are encouraged to bring your own mask or face covering for the trip from the car park to your appointment.

Full details of further changes to visiting at other Canterbury DHB facilities, including cafés will be available on our website tonight.

As always, please don’t visit if you’re unwell and remember the usual public health precautions such as hand hygiene and physical distancing (wherever possible stay two metres away from people you don’t know, and one metre away from people you do know). 

If you have COVID-19 symptoms (at least one of the following symptoms: new or worsening cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, stuffy or runny nose, lost sense of smell – with or without a fever) you should contact your General Practice team or call Healthline on 0800 358 5453.

Most GP teams are offering testing if you have these symptoms. If you have symptoms and are not registered with a GP team you can attend a testing centre (which you do not need an appointment to attend). 

If you are unwell and need to see a doctor you should call your usual GP team for advice 24/7. For general health information visit www.healthinfo.org.nz.

ENDS

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Page last updated: 23 September 2021

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