All hospital visitors are recommended to wear a medical face mask. For more information about visiting: Visitors and family. 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 link COVID-19 Vaccination • West Coast • Healthpoint

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

Senior doctors strike Tuesday 5 September, 12 midday to 2pm

Friday 1 September 2023Health news2 minutes to read

Senior doctors strike Tuesday 5 September, 12 midday to 2pm

Senior doctors and dentists employed by Te Whatu Ora, who are members of ASMS*, have advised they are planning to strike from 12 midday to 2pm on Tuesday 5 September 2023.

(*The Association of Salaried Medical Specialists is the union for senior medical officers – doctors and dentists)

Te Whatu Ora Te Tai o Poutini West Coast has contingency plans in place to ensure continued safe care for all patients during the two-hour strike period.

  • Emergency and hospital care will be available throughout the strike.
  • Anyone staying in hospital during this time will still receive the care and support they need.
  • We have an agreement with the unions for senior medical officers to be available to provide Life Preserving Services if needed.
  • Te Whatu Ora respects the right of its staff to take industrial action.

If you have an outpatient or surgery appointment

  • If you have an outpatient appointment or surgery appointment on that day, please attend as planned, unless you hear from us.
  • We will be contacting anyone whose appointment needs to be rescheduled.

If the strike is called off

  • If the strike is called off, we will contact patients whose outpatient appointment or surgery has been deferred.
  • Some appointments may be able to be reinstated to the original time, but this will be decided on a case-by-case basis, and in consultation with patients.
  • If you want to check what’s happening, please call the number on your appointment/surgery letter.
  • If the strike is called off and you’re unsure about what’s happening, please call the phone number on your appointment letter and someone will be able to advise you.

In an emergency

  • Emergency care will be available throughout the strike period.
  • Emergency departments will remain open.
  • If you have a medical emergency, do not delay seeking help.
  • Call 111 or go to your nearest emergency department immediately if you or someone else is in a serious or life-threatening condition.

Further industrial action

We have received notice of a further two-hour strike on Wednesday 13 September, from 10am – 12pm. If it goes ahead, we will follow our usual process and contact people directly if their outpatient appointment or surgery needs to be rescheduled.

For more information about the strike and Te Whatu Ora plans visit – here.


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Page last updated: 1 September 2023

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