Hospital visitors don’t need a Vaccine Pass, but must wear a surgical/medical paper mask. Fabric face coverings are no longer acceptable. See our COVID-19 pages for visiting guidelines, COVID-19 tests current case numbers in regions of Canterbury and care in the community advice. See for info about vaccinations.

We are at ORANGE according to the NZ COVID-19 Protection Framework

Last updated:
19 April 2022

For visitors to all facilities effective from Tuesday 19 April 2022

With the change to the ORANGE Traffic Light setting, Canterbury DHB is easing its visitor policy in recognition of the fact we have passed the peak of the current Omicron outbreak and case numbers are slowly reducing.

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

  • One adult visitor may be accompanied by no more than one child over the age of 12 per patient in the hospital at any given time, except where stated otherwise in the ‘exceptions’ section below.  No children under 12 and those 12 and over must be accompanied by an adult and wear a medical mask.
  • Visitors or support people should not visit our facilities if they are unwell.
  • Surgical/medical masks must be worn at all times at all Canterbury DHB sites and will be provided if people don’t have them.
  • Hand sanitiser stations are visible and must be used.

By adhering to these conditions, 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 (ie more than one visitor) where a trusted whānau member provides 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 – 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 support people, and women on the Maternity Ward are allowed one support person for the duration of their stay in our facilities at Christchurch Womens 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 children are allowed to visit.
  • 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, following a supervised negative RAT result)
  • Children who are inpatients, one other visitor (other than a parent or caregiver) is able to visit in consultation with the nurse in charge.
  • 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.

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.

Face covering exemption cards

The Exemptions Team at the Ministry of Health is now responsible for processing requests for Face Covering Communication Cards.

Updated information about mask wearing, and how to request an exemption card can now be found here. People unable to request an exemption card online can call 0800 28 29 26 and select option 2, or text 8988

Patients and visitors should also read the additional more detailed visiting guidelines for each specific hospital.

More COVID-19 information

Emergency dental care: Where to go

If you or a family member has a very painful toothache or an injury to your teeth or gums, get help as soon as possible.

For serious problems that occur after hours or on weekends, you may need to contact an after-hours dentist, see below.

Some hospitals can deal with dental emergencies, but this should be your last option. You will likely have to follow up with a dentist later.

The Ministry of Health also has some tips on how to get emergency dental care.

Subsidised urgent care from a private dentist

Some private dentists have a contract with Canterbury DHB to provide subsidised urgent care for people who have a Community Services Card. To use this service you must live in Canterbury and have a current Community Services Card. The emergency dental care is for a one-off treatment of a problem. If you need further dental care, you'll have to pay the dentist’s usual fees for this.

Participating dental practices provide a 30-minute visit, where a dentist will assess the dental problem and provide any necessary dental treatment.

Note: If the dentist decides that your dental condition doesn't meet the definition of a dental emergency, they'll charge their usual fees. You will need to pay a co-payment of up to $40 a visit under this scheme.

Participating dental practices in Canterbury

Practice name


Phone number

Colombo Street Dental

201 Colombo St, Sydenham, Christchurch

03 337 4596

Darfield Dental

42 South Tce, Darfield

03 318 8392

Dentistry on Parkside

80 Park St, Ashburton

03 308 7472

G&E Dental


369 Main South Rd, Hornby, Christchurch

0800 433 368


52 Charles St, Rangiora

66 Rolleston Dr, Rolleston

Chertsey Rd, Methven

Halswell Dental

284 Halswell Rd, Halswell, Christchurch

03 322 9577

Hornby Dental

5 Tower St, Hornby, Christchurch

03 349 5059

L R Acker BDS (Hoon Hay Dental Surgery)

14 Lincoln Rd, Spreydon, Christchurch

03 338 9101

Linwood Dental Centre

211 Linwood Ave, Linwood, Christchurch

03 389 9730

Redwood Family Dentists

186 Main North Rd, Redwood, Christchurch

03 352 6186

Richmond Dental

45 North Avon Rd, Richmond, Christchurch

03 389 5923

Peter Van Kuijk

129 Williams St, Kaiapoi

03 327 7199

WINZ emergency grant

WINZ beneficiaries can apply for an emergency grant of up to $300 to pay for urgent dental care with any dentist. Talk to the dentist about applying for the grant before you start treatment.


ACC will contribute towards the cost of treatment for teeth damaged in accidents (PDF). You can phone ACC on 0800 101 996 for more information.


After Hours & Emergency Dentists in Christchurch

The following private dentists in Christchurch have identified that they are open late night and some weekends and public holidays for emergency dental appointments. Note: These services are not associated with Canterbury DHB. 

  • Please see each dentists website for more and information about their specific late night/weekend opening hours.
  • Please phone the dentist to book a dental appointment.

Garden City Dental, Bealey Avenue, Christchurch
Phone: 03 379 6222

Loxo Dental, Papanui, Christchurch
Phone: 03 354 9549

Pathway Dental, 91 Riccarton Road, Christchurch
Phone: 03 366 8866

Team Dental Riccarton, Christchurch
Phone: 03 341 1122

Page last updated: 22 February 2022

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