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

New West Coast DHB general manager appointed

Wednesday 2 August 2017Media release2 minutes to read

Philip Wheble has this week been announced as the new general manager for the West Coast District Health Board.

DHB Chief Executive David Meates says this the new general manager position is an important Coast-based senior leadership role, responsible for working with clinical and operational leaders to enable and support teams to deliver and sustain the broadest range of high quality health services for the whole of the West Coast

“More than 30 applications from across New Zealand and Australia were received for the role. Phil's appointment follows an interview process involving senior doctors from Greymouth and Westport and nursing, Māori health and allied health leaders from both the West Coast and Canterbury,” Mr Meates says. 

Phil and his family moved to the West Coast three and a half years ago, where he was initially appointed DHB Planning and Funding team leader and then Acting General Manager Grey / Westland Health Services. Before working in health, Phil undertook leadership roles in the energy, utilities and service industries.  

“It is an exciting time for health services on the Coast. New facilities are well underway in Greymouth and planned for Westport, and new models of care and ways of working are being brought to life. It is in this context that Phil will work with clinical and operational leaders across the West Coast health system to ensure services are integrated and connected to each other – locally and Coast-wide – and that they are as relevant, responsive and accessible to our communities as they can be,” Mr Meates says.

Phil takes up this new position immediately. 

Further work would now be undertaken to determine what other changes might be needed to best support the delivery of integrated healthcare services for the Coast.  This would include working with teams in Buller, Grey and South Westland to determine local leadership arrangements that ensure the distinctive needs of all of Coast communities were met in a connected and joined-up way.


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Page last updated: 17 April 2019

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