View our COVID-19 page for general advice, where to get COVID-19 tests, and visiting guidelines for our hospital services.
See for the latest information about COVID-19 vaccinations in Canterbury.

Visitors and family

Information for patients, patient friends and family, and other visitors to hospitals in Canterbury.

Guidelines for visiting to hospitals during COVID-19

Current detailed visitor guidelines are available on our COVID-19 page.

If you are visiting a patient

  • Do not visit if you are feeling sick. If you have recently had sickness including coughs, colds, influenza (flu) or diarrhoea, please do not visit until you have been healthy for at least two days unless nursing staff say it is OK.
  • Cover up any open wounds or cuts
  • Clean your hands! If your hands are dirty or you have used the toilet, wash your hands thoroughly. You can also use the alcohol hand rub freely available from the hand hygiene stations in the hospital foyers or at the entrances to all wards and clinics.
  • Do not touch the patient’s wounds, bandages, dressings, or medical equipment.
  • Do not clutter. Help staff keep areas clean by only bringing essential items into the hospital and taking away things that are not required.

Staff may ask visitors to leave the patient from time to time while the patient is receiving clinical care.

If visitors’ behaviour is inappropriate, inconsiderate or threatening, staff will ask visitors to leave Canterbury DHB premises.

See this poster about how to keep patients safe while you visit them.

If visiting with a large group, please consider others.

Avoid crowding walkways, making too much noise, or entering other patients’ personal space.

Family may visit seriously ill patients at any time with the approval of the nurse in charge. If your friend or family member is very unwell, or English is not their first language, you may be able to stay with them.

However, we encourage visitors to keep to visiting hours (see the hospital page for details of visiting hours) whenever possible to give patients time to rest.

If family members are likely to be away from home, it is important to leave contact telephone numbers with ward staff.

It is not possible to have flowers in some hospital areas. If you are thinking of purchasing flowers please ask the hospital volunteers in the gift shop first.

Gift shops also sell flower vouchers, for flowers to be delivered when the patient goes home.

Christchurch Hospital

Flowers and potted plants are not allowed in the following wards and units:

  • Ward 10
  • Ward 11
  • Ward 17
  • Ward 18
  • Ward 20
  • Ward 24
  • Ward 25
  • Ward A3, Waipapa - General Surgery and Gastroenterology, Surgical Progressive Care Unit (SPCU)
  • Ward A4, Waipapa - Orthopaedics and Trauma Unit 
  • Ward B3, Waipapa - General Surgery and SARA
  • Ward B4, Waipapa - Orthopaedics 
  • Ward B8, Waipapa - Nephrology and Neurosurgery
  • AMAU (Acute Medical Assessment Unit)
  • BMTU (Bone Marrow Transplant Unit)
  • CHOC (Children’s Haematology and Oncology)
  • CICU (Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit)
  • DOSA (Day-of-Surgery Admission)
  • DSU (Day Surgery Unit)
  • ICU (Intensive Care Unit)
  • PHDU (Paediatric High Dependency Unit)
  • UU (Urology Unit)

Christchurch Women's Hospital and Maternity Units

Flowers and potted plants are not allowed in any wards in Christchurch Women’s Hospital.

This includes the Maternity Ward and Birthing Suite and all Community Maternity Units at Rangiora, Lincoln, Ashburton, Kaikoura, Darfield.

Burwood Hospital

Flowers and potted plants are not allowed in the following wards and units:

  • Admitting Unit
  • PACU (Post-Anaesthetic Care Unit) (Recovery)
  • Progressive Care Unit
  • Check with ward staff Ward FG (Spinal Unit) and Ward CG (Brain Injury)

Staff flower deliveries

It is not possible to deliver flowers to staff during work. Staff must collect their flower delivery at the end of their shift on their way home.

Canterbury DHB policy does not generally allow dogs, pets or other animals, apart from service animals (e.g. guide dog, therapy animals), into our hospital facilities.

There may be exceptions in some rehabilitation areas and special circumstances by prior arrangement with ward staff.

If wishing to visit with animals

  • You must first discuss and agree the animal visit with staff
  • If a visit is possible, you are responsible for the animal at all times
  • No animal visits are possible during meal times
  • Animals are not allowed in public cafeterias and cafes
  • Dogs need to be on a lead at all times

These visitors need permission to access Canterbury DHB facilities.

  • Arrange your visit in advance with the person you need to speak to
  • On arrival at reception, complete the CDHB Sign-in Register or electronic sign-in and fill in a visitor label to wear
  • Follow Canterbury DHB rules and guidelines while on site

Media visiting Canterbury DHB hospitals can find information in the Media Guide page.

Page last updated: 27 August 2021

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