VISITING HOSPITAL

Hospital visitors must wear a medical paper face mask. Fabric face coverings are not acceptable. Expand this message for more detailed information about hospital visiting guidelines.

Last updated:
16 September 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 Friday 16 September 2022

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 people must continue to 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 must 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 surgical 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 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 must wear a medical 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

Kiwi pre-schoolers losing teeth to painful, preventable tooth decay

Tuesday 28 July 2020Media release4 minutes to read

Health News

A nationwide study was released today evaluating the link between community water fluoridation and the experience of severe tooth decay in four-year-old New Zealand children

Kiwi kids are suffering unnecessarily from severe tooth decay that could be prevented, according to research published today in JAMA Paediatrics, the highest-ranking journal of Paediatrics, Perinatology and Child Health in the world.

The nation-wide study, evaluating the link between community water fluoridation and the experience of severe tooth decay in four-year-old New Zealand children, analysed the B4 School Check screening programme data of 275,000 children over a five-year period from 2011 to 2016.

The findings show children who didn’t have a fluoridated water supply were 20% more likely to have severe tooth decay.

“Modern dentistry can only do so much to tackle this issue and by the time children receive dental care it’s often too late to save their baby teeth, which then affects the development of adult teeth,” says Dr Martin Lee, Canterbury’s Community Dental Service Clinical Director. “Community water fluoridation is the safest and most cost-effective preventative strategy we have to protect the teeth of all Kiwi kids, and the teeth of all New Zealanders generally.”

Nearly one in seven (15%) of four-year-olds who had had a B4 School Check were found to be severely affected by tooth decay. While the rates of severe decay were much higher for Māori and Pacific children and children living in deprived areas, no-one was immune – 7% of NZ/European children and children living in the least deprived areas had severe tooth decay.

Four-year-olds with severe decay frequently need a general anaesthetic for their dental treatment and many of those on hospital waiting lists have chronic toothache and abscesses.

New Zealand has a long-term national policy supporting community water fluoridation, yet only 54% of the population currently receives it. A Bill proposing moving responsibility for this from Councils to District Health Boards, introduced in 2016, has not been progressed since a health select committee report in 2017.

Lead author of the study, Philip Schluter, Professor of Population Health at the University of Canterbury (UC), says the burden on the dental health of Kiwi kids is not shared equally across the country.

“The research shows the current lack of widespread community water fluoridation disproportionately affects children living in the most deprived areas, with Māori and Pacific children more likely to experience worse oral health than pakeha, even after accounting for key sociodemographic factors,” says Professor Schluter.

“We hope that the real-world evidence provided in this research will be used in evidence-based policy-making to combat the woeful oral health burdens and neglect carried unnecessarily by so many children in New Zealand.”

The research was undertaken by a team of legal, public health, dental, water quality, and geospatial specialists: Professor Philip Schluter, University of Canterbury (Population Health expert); Dr Martin Lee (Canterbury’s Community Dental Service Clinical Director); Helen Atkins (Director of Atkins Holm Majurey, New Zealand’s leading specialist environmental law firm; and President-elect, Water New Zealand); Mr Barry Mattingley (Senior Scientist in drinking water quality at ESR, a New Zealand Crown Research Institute); and Dr Matthew Hobbs, University of Canterbury (Senior Lecturer in Public Health with specialist geospatial expertise).

Key points/findings

  • Study of 275,000 Kiwi children over a five-year period (2011–2016) found:
    • Children in areas without a fluoridated water supply were 20% more likely to have severe tooth decay
    • Māori and Pacific children living in the most deprived areas were 8 and 12 times (respectively) to have severe tooth decay
    • 7% of NZ/European children and children living in the least deprived areas had severe tooth decay
    • Nearly one in seven (15%) of four-year-olds who had had a B4 School Check were found to be severely affected by tooth decay.
  • New Zealand has a long-term national policy supporting community water fluoridation, yet only 54% of the population receives it.
  • A Bill proposing moving responsibility for community water fluoridation from Councils to District Health Boards, introduced in 2016, has not been progressed since a health select committee report in 2017.

ENDS

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Page last updated: 28 July 2020

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