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

Updated visitor guidance under COVID-19 Alert Level 1 for West Coast DHB facilities

Thursday 11 June 2020Health news2 minutes to read

Under Alert Level 1, the public can expect to see fewer restrictions in place in terms of physical distancing requirements as well as further changes to our visitor restrictions. We have stopped screening people at the entrances to our facilities from today.

The most important thing for the public to do from today on is to keep a record of where they go and when.  This can be done by ‘checking in’ via the QR code outside many businesses, including many DHB facilities, or keeping a diary of where they go and when. This information is useful if we were to have a case and needed to advise the public.

For the time being, our visitor hours remain between 2pm to 6pm at Grey Base Hospital and between 10am to 2pm and from 3.30pm to 8pm at Buller Health. These hours will be reviewed in the next couple of weeks.

West Coast DHB Medical Director, Dr Graham Roper says patients who have appointments at any of our facilities are asked not to come in if they are unwell.

“Please phone the department to let them know and seek advice from your GP or Healthline – 0800 611 116, or for COVID-19 health advice – 0800 358 5453.

“Everyone should continue to keep up good hygiene practices such as washing and thoroughly drying hands, covering coughs and sneezes and staying home if they’re sick,” says Dr Roper.

Please do not enter our facilities if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • a cough
  • a sore throat
  • a runny nose
  • sneezing
  • loss of smell/taste (anosmia)
  • aches
  • fever
  • diarrhoea
  • vomiting

This updated guidance is effective at all West Coast DHB facilities from today, Thursday, 11 June 2020.

To keep up to date with current visitor restrictions, visit West Coast DHB’s COVID-19 visitor restrictions.To find out how you can support contact tracing and to download the app, visit Tracing COVID-19.



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Page last updated: 16 July 2020

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