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 Coat DHB health facilities return to Alert Level 1 restrictions

Monday 8 March 2021Health news2 minutes to read

Media Release

8 March 2021

West Coat DHB health facilities return to Alert Level 1 restrictions

With the drop back down to Alert Level 1 several restrictions on visitors remain in place at West Coast DHB’s health facilities.

Full details of the Visitor Policy under Alert Level 1 can be found on our COVID-19 information page.

Chief Medical Officer, Dr Graham Roper, said we are still asking everyone visiting any DHB facility to check in using the QR code for the government’s COVID-19 Tracer App or sign in manually at the main entrance especially if they aren’t keeping a personal diary.

Everyone needs to continue to play their part by keeping up all their good habits which have helped keep the West Coast community free of COVID-19 for many months now.

These include:

  • Staying home if you’re sick
  • Washing and drying your hands often
  • Using hand sanitiser frequently
  • Scan, scan, scan, wherever you are, whenever you can – and make sure Bluetooth is switched on within the app
  • Seeking health advice if you have any symptoms of COVID-19

You can call your own general practice team or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 for free health advice 24/7.

“While it may feel like we’re back to business as usual because all health services are being provided as normal, it’s important that we keep up our good habits by not letting our guard down,” Graham Roper said.



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Page last updated: 8 March 2021

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