Hospital visiting guidelines updated 16 September 2022: Hospital visitors must wear a surgical/medical paper mask. Fabric face coverings are not acceptable.  See our COVID-19 page for general COVID-19 advice, detailed hospital visiting guidelines and COVID-19 tests.

See for info on vaccinations.

Last updated:
16 September 2022

Fewer visitor restrictions now apply

For visitors to all facilities effective from 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

West Coast DHB begins consultation on its proposal to dispose of surplus DHB property

Wednesday 13 October 2021Health news2 minutes to read

West Coast DHB has begun consulting on its proposal to dispose of surplus DHB property.

The West Coast DHB Board recently completed a review of the DHB’s property portfolio with a view to selling a number of properties the Board does not have any future plans for.

The Board has initially identified around a dozen properties across the West Coast, comprising bare land, residential and some former rural clinics.

Before any DHB can dispose of Crown land, there is a statutory process that has to be complied with. We are at the beginning of that process. This involves a review for any offer-back obligations to any former owners, consideration of rights of first refusal for local Iwi, public consultation on disposal and thereafter, West Coast DHB Board and Ministerial approval.

West Coast DHB Chair Rick Barker says each of these properties have been visited and as the Board has no foreseeable future use for these properties there is no point in holding onto them, particularly as they are a cost to the Board just to hold with no benefit.

“The Board is committed to ensuring the proceeds of these properties benefit the provision of health on the Coast. There are a number of places the capital can be put to work rather than sit idly as an empty property.”

On conclusion of the consultation process, the West Coast DHB Board will consider the views of its resident population before making a decision on disposal. The properties that are deemed surplus to DHB requirements will be disposed of in accordance with the statutory disposal process.

Feedback on the proposed sale of DHB property is sought via an electronic submission form at the end of the consultation document that can be found at Public Consultations | West Coast District Health Board (

Alternatively, people can call 03 364 4101 to obtain a hard copy or make a verbal submission.

Submissions close at 5pm on 19 November 2021.



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Page last updated: 13 October 2021

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