There is still a heightened risk to vulnerable people in hospital, so we recommend all people to continue wearing a mask when visiting any of our facilities and follow other advice designed to keep patients, staff and visitors safe.  See our COVID-19 page for general COVID-19 advice, detailed hospital visiting guidelines and COVID-19 tests.

See West Coast COVID-19 vaccination clinics for info on vaccinations.

Last updated:
16 September 2022

Fewer visitor restrictions now apply

For visitors to all facilities (effective from and last updated on 16 September 2022)

Some visitor restrictions for all Te Whatu Ora Te Tai o Poutini West Coast 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 other 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 in single rooms may have more than one visitor while patients in multi-bed rooms can have one visitor only per patient to ensure there is no overcrowding.
  • People can have one or two support people to accompany them to outpatients appointments.
  • Women in labour in a birthing suite, in Te Nīkau Hospital’s Maternity Ward and in Buller’s Kawatiri Maternity Unit can have the usual support people, subject to space, for the duration of their stay in our facilities.
  • Eating or drinking at the bedside is at the discretion of the Clinical Nurse Manager. 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.

Mask wearing

  • Surgical/medical masks must be worn at all sites, except in counselling, mental health and addiction services where it’s on a case-by-case agreement with patients. Masks will be provided if you don’t have one. In higher-risk environments, people, including young children, may not be able to visit if they cannot wear a mask.
  • 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.

Visiting patients with COVID-19

  • People are able to 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.

You must NOT visit our facilities if you

  • are COVID-19 positive
  • are unwell. Please stay home if you have a tummy bug or cold or flu/COVID-19-like symptoms (even if you’ve tested negative for COVID-19).

Te Whatu Ora West Coast Aged Residential Care facilities

Visitors are welcome at our Aged Care Residential facilities, subject to the space available. All visitors must wear a surgical mask.

More COVID-19 information

Recent outbreak of illness at Westport North School – Media Release

Tuesday 30 July 2019Health news2 minutes to read

Please attribute to Dr Ramon Pink, Medical Officer of Health

The Community and Public Health division of West Coast District Health Board is working with the Westport North School to determine the cause of the recent outbreak of illness.

Samples have been taken and until the tests results have been returned we are unable to comment on the cause of the illness.

Influenza-like illness is circulating in the community on the West Coast. In some areas it is having a significant impact, causing unwellness in schools and workplaces. We encourage those who are unwell to stay at home from school or work until their health has improved.

If you have been unwell with gastroenteritis, it is recommended that you remain away from work or school for at least 48 hours after symptoms have stopped.

If you or someone you know becomes unwell with an influenza-like illness there are some things you can do to help them recover and stop the spread.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitiser – especially after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Practice good cough and sneeze etiquette: always cough and sneeze into a tissue or into your elbow (completely covering you mouth and nose).
  • See your GP if your symptoms aren’t settling or are becoming more severe and/or you are unable to drink enough fluid.  Young children, frail older people and pregnant women are at more risk of dehydration.

If you need medical advice, call your general practice team 24/7 first rather than visiting in person. After hours, follow the instructions to be put through to a nurse for free health advice. If it is an emergency, dial 111.

We do not comment on individual patient care.



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Page last updated: 16 July 2020

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