Inpatient Information

We know that good health care involves more than just good medicine. It involves dedication to your well-being, comfort at all levels and a safe environment.

We understand that a hospital stay may be daunting; however, we do our best to ensure all of our patients are well taken care of and are comfortable.

  • We’ll go through each step of the process with you
  • A quick guide on what to do when you arrive at Saint James Hospital
  • A few key items you should bring along for your stay
  • Specific cases like colonoscopies and chemotherapy require specific guidelines…

Coming in for a procedure

What to tell us

The more information you are able to give us before you arrive, the better. Once you are here, you can relax in the knowledge that you are getting the best possible care. Please let us know if you require an interpreter or have any special requirements.

If you are using health insurance, you will need to give us the policy number and the name of the policyholder. Please check your policy details, terms and conditions before you book your procedure. It is your responsibility to notify your health insurance about the planned procedure.

Health assessment

Depending on your procedure, you may be asked to attend our Preoperative Assessment Clinic before your scheduled procedure date.

During this visit, you will be seen by a nurse who will take a full history and prepare you for blood tests and other investigations that may be needed before the procedure can take place. We require this information to ensure that any medical issues are identified and dealt with in a timely fashion.

Not every procedure requires a full preoperative assessment, so do not worry if you have not been booked for one. If you have any questions regarding the assessment, please contact the In-patient Bookings Office on 2329 1000.

If you are asked to attend for this assessment, please bring with you any recent test results, referral notes or medical history summaries and a list of all the medications that you are currently taking.

How to prepare

If you are visiting the hospital to have surgery, you will need to prepare for the type of anaesthetic that you are due to have. Written information on the type of anaesthetic will be given.

What to bring with you

  • Any notes, reports or letters from your doctor;
  • All relevant scans or x-rays;
  • All the medicines that you are currently taking in their original boxes or containers, including those taken irregularly, and any creams and inhalers that you use;
  • Comfortable and suitable clothes to wear after your operation;
  • Wide-legged trousers if you are having a knee operation (arthroscopy);
  • A button-through shirt if your operation will affect your arm or chest;
  • Toiletries;
  • Nightclothes, if there is a possibility that you will stay overnight;
  • Anything that you would normally take away with you to help pass the time, such as a book or a laptop/tablet;
  • Your mobile phone and charger (please note that using mobile phones is prohibited in certain areas of the hospital);
  • Suitable arrangements for settling your account;
  • If you use glasses, please bring them with you.
  • Contact lenses will need to be removed before your procedure.

What not to bring with you

  • Valuables (jewellery and unnecessary cheque books, credit or debit cards) for which we will not assume liability;
  • Large sums of cash;
  • Towels (these are provided).


If you find that you cannot avoid bringing valuables into the hospital, we provide a small safe in every patient room.


It is very important that we collect current and accurate information from you so that your admission runs smoothly. On the day, please report first to the Patient Information Desk so that we can check your details and direct you to your ward.

When you are admitted, you will be asked to read and sign an admission form which contains the hospital’s terms and conditions.

We would like you to be relaxed, so please try to arrive at the time given to you. Our team at the Patient Information Desk will guide you through the formal admission process. You will then be taken to your room.

Once admitted, you will probably have questions, and you might also feel anxious. Our nurses will be able to reassure you and keep you fully informed about what to expect. Please do not hesitate to speak to them about any concerns you might have.

During your stay with us, you will not only benefit from the highest standards of medical treatment, but also from the respectful and attentive care of our staff. Each one of them takes personal responsibility for making your time with us as positive as possible.

Nursing admission

When you are settled in your room, a nurse will check your personal details and medical history with you. Your nurse will also confirm the time of your operation. Occasionally, the time of your procedure may be changed due to circumstances that are beyond the hospital’s control. We will always inform you immediately and keep you updated.

At this point, you might also have your temperature and blood pressure checked, and other basic medical tests may be performed as necessary.

Again, this information is important to ensure your welfare throughout your procedure and to make your recovery as quick and straightforward as possible. Your nurse will once again go through any medication you are currently taking.

For your own safety, hospital policy states that medication should not be kept in patient rooms, therefore, the nurse will store your own medication in a labelled box in the Treatment Room. These will be returned to you upon discharge, or you can ask your family to take them back home.

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