Should your loved one require an interpreter for their admission, please get in touch with our Patient Service Centre teams who will organise one to assist on the day.
Many of our specialists also speak a foreign language and specialists treating international patients cover a broad spectrum of specialities.
Once you arrive at your chosen Epworth hospital, you and your loved one will be greeted by a friendly staff member who will record your arrival.
They will then direct you to the admissions lounge.
The admission lounge
When in the admission lounge, an admissions officer will call the name of your loved one. They will then assist you in completing and confirming admission paperwork, signing health fund claim forms (for insured patients) and in completing an informed financial consent document.
Payment of any out of pocket expenses will be required at this time and once this is done, you and your loved one will be asked to return to the admissions lounge.
During the admissions process, one person can be nominated to act as the primary contact with the hospital during your loved one's care.
This ensures our nursing staff can dedicate their time exclusively to patient care.
As the person legally responsible for your child's care, you must sign a consent for procedure form before your child's procedure can take place. If you are unsure about any aspect of the procedure, please discuss any questions you have with your child's doctor.
We understand you may need to bring your other children into the hospital with you on admission. Where possible, please organise to bring someone to care for those children, as they will not be permitted into other departments with you and your sick child.
If your child is required to stay overnight, we can accommodate one parent/carer to stay with them. This parent/carer will be given a fold-out bed and meals for the duration of the hospital stay.
Coming to hospital checklists
Before coming to hospital, we recommend reviewing our guide about what to bring and how to get to our hospitals.
- Have you completed your online patient admission?
- Have you confirmed with your health fund that you are covered for your procedure?
- Have you confirmed with your health fund whether there are any excesses or co-payments you will have to pay?
- Have you asked your health fund if they have a 'no gap' agreement with Epworth?
- Have you asked your doctor for the item numbers relevant to your procedure?
- Have you asked your doctor for written informed financial consent?
- Have you contacted your anaesthetist to get an estimate of their fees and your relevant MBS item numbers?
Important paperwork to bring to hospital
- Appointment details, consent forms and any other paperwork your doctor has given you
- Completed our online patient admission
- Copies of any relevant current x-rays, scans, or pathology results?
- Current medications and a list of medications? (Including medications, you have been asked to cease prior to surgery)
- Documents relating to advance care planning (i.e., a medical treatment decision maker, appointed support person, a guardian, a medical power of attorney, a refusal of treatment certificate or an advance care directive)? For further information on advance care planning including medical treatment decision maker and appointed support person, please speak with your General Practitioner or refer to the Take Control booklet available through the Office of the Public Advocate https://www.publicadvocate.vic.gov.au/your-rights/your-healthcare/making-an-advance-care-directive
What to bring to hospital
- Physical aids such as crutches/walking aids and are they clearly labelled with your name?
- Glasses, contact lenses or hearing aids and a case to safely store them in?
- Method of payment for your account?
- Eligible pharmacy or government entitlement discount cards?
- Loose, comfortable clothing and sensible shoes?
- Slippers, dressing gown, sleepwear, and personal toiletries (including toothbrush and toothpaste)?
- Phone charger?
- Books or light reading material?
- Footwear which holds the foot firmly and provides support when walking?
Please try to limit what you bring to 1 small cabin bag no more than 8kg to meet health and safety guidelines.
Please read the Patient Admissions Booklet.
Parking and transport
Operating theatre journey
The following section is designed to help you understand your operating theatre journey and recovery.
Your operating theatre journey
During your time in the admissions lounge, you will be taken into a room to be interviewed by a pre-admission nurse about your basic health.
If you have recently developed an acute illness, please notify nursing staff on arrival. Your anaesthetist will review your condition and determine whether it is appropriate to proceed with surgery.
Your pre-admission nurse will ask you a series of basic health related questions and provide theatre attire for you to change into.
You will then be taken into a holding bay within the operating theatres by a holding bay nurse or theatre orderly.
Your holding bay nurse will confirm your personal details and run through a checklist confirming your basic health and personal details.
An anaesthetic nurse and anaesthetist will introduce themselves to you during this period and will again ask you basic questions regarding your basic health and personal details.
Some procedures, such as epidurals, may be performed by the anaesthetist in the anaesthesia bay or room before entering the operating theatre.
When you are ready to enter the operating theatres, a theatre technician will introduce themselves and take you into the operating room, assisting in transferring you to the operating table.
Why am I being asked the same questions?
During your operating theatre journey, it may become frustrating being asked the same questions multiple times. However, this is a necessary process for us to ensure that we have the correct patient and we have prepared for the correct procedure every step of the way.
Why am I still waiting to be taken into theatre?
Patients are taken to the operating room in order of an operating list. While lists are carefully planned, patient emergencies can result in list order changes or longer than expected theatre times. We make every effort to keep your waiting time to a minimum and will keep you informed if any unforeseen delays occur.
Services for patients
Epworth offers a number of services to help make your journey from planning your care to continuing your care after you leave Epworth as comfortable as possible.
Point of Care
Point of Care is an interactive in-room touch screen system designed to help improve your stay during your time with us. A welcome screen will introduce you to your treatment team and provide information about your stay, as well as a 'how to use Point of Care' instructional video.
Point of Care offers an interactive meal ordering system enabling you to order meals any time between from 7:00am – 8:30pm from a wide ranging menu catering for all dietary requirements.
TV is also available through Point of Care, with access to Netflix, Stan and free to air channels available. Please remember to bring your login details with you to watch Netflix or Stan during your stay.
All major radio stations can be played through Point of Care, including 3AW and ABC along with audio books.
A small selection of games including Sudoku, mini-golf and Trivia can also be played through the Point of Care system.
Please note: Point of Care is not available on our mental health wards at Epworth Camberwell.
Free news service
Patients and visitors can access news in The Australian, Herald Sun, Geelong Advertiser and a range of metro and regional titles free of charge during their stay or visit to Epworth. The NewsWiFi service can be accessed from the bedside Point of Care system, or from a mobile or tablet device when logged on to the Epworth Wi-Fi network.
Patients will be given their own unique code, allowing them to log onto our Wi-Fi network at any time.
Patients will have their own phone in-room, allowing them to be reached directly at any time.
Pastoral Care at Epworth embraces both the secular and the sacred. Support is offered irrespective of religious or other beliefs and all religious or other beliefs are treated with the highest respect. We aim to offer timely and appropriate support, especially at times of acute anxiety and loss. Pastoral care is offered to patients, families and staff by qualified pastoral care staff and chaplains. Accredited visitors from various faith traditions visit regularly or on request.
Epworth runs a volunteer program, which helps provide support to all of our hospitals and patients. Our volunteers can help patients in a number of ways, including:
- Concierge assistance to visitors
- Delivering mail
- Keeping patients company
Same day patients
After your procedure, you will be taken to the recovery area where you will be closely monitored by nursing staff. The time you spend in recovery will depend on the type of procedure you have and how your recovery is progressing.
Your surgeon and/or anaesthetist may review you prior to discharge. When you are ready for discharge, you will be given information relating to your post-operative care at home.
It is a requirement that you have someone accompany you home and stay with you for 24 hours after your procedure.
After your procedure, you will be taken to a recovery area where nursing staff will closely monitor you. The time you spend in recovery will depend on the type of procedure you have and how your recovery is progressing.
You will then be taken to a ward bed.
Your length of stay will depend on the type of procedure you have had.
Rehabilitation at Epworth
Epworth promotes a multidisciplinary team approach to patient care, overseen by a doctor. At Epworth, you have access to a range of professionals in the fields of physiotherapy, speech pathology, occupational therapy, psychology, social work and dietetics are to support your care and rehabilitation.
Planning your discharge
Planning for your discharge commences on your admission and continues throughout your stay. This ensures any services you may require can be arranged in a timely manner, such as rehabilitation, in-home care, pharmacy and transport.
When you are ready for discharge, you will be given information relating to your post-operative care at home. We may call you the day after you have gone home to check on your progress.
After an operation, we recommend you complete the following exercises:
- Gentle deep breathing exercises to exercise your lungs and return them to normal function after an operation
- While in bed, move your legs about and wiggle your toes to help increase circulation. You may be fitted with compression stockings to assist with this
- A nurse will explain any special instructions for your care following discharge, and a pharmacist may provide you with information about medications you may need to take. You will be given written instructions to help you remember what you need to do. Once at home, it is important you follow the instructions you have been given
Rehabilitation can help you recover.
Our rehabilitation team delivers programs suited to individual goals and personal needs; incorporating elements of cognitive, emotional and physical therapy and educational support.
When you are at home
The following checklist is designed to help you successfully continue your recovery at home.
Have you organised someone to take you home?
Before you leave us, please organise for someone to stay with you for the remainder of the day and overnight. This is your 'recovery time' and we recommend rest as if you were still remaining in hospital.
Do you have your post-surgery instructions?
Your doctor is required to provide you with post-surgery instructions to follow, please ensure you have received these prior to leaving hospital.
Have you collected any medication(s) you may need?
You may be required to take medication(s) after your procedure, please ensure you have picked these up prior to your arrival home.
Can you readily get in touch with your surgeon?
Please ensure you can readily get in touch with your surgeon should you notice any post-surgery issues occurring at home.
Supporting a patient
During your time in the admissions lounge, the patient will be taken into a room to be interviewed by a pre-admission nurse about their physical health.
After this interview has concluded, they will next be taken into a holding bay within the operating theatres by a holding bay nurse or theatre orderly.
After the operation
Recovery - same-day patients
After the patient’s procedure has been completed, they will be taken to the recovery area where they are closely monitored by nursing staff. The time they spend there is dependent on the type of procedure they have had and how their recovery is progressing.
They may also be reviewed by their surgeon and/or anaesthetist prior to discharge.
When the patient is ready to be discharged, you will receive a call from a nurse informing you they are ready to be picked up.
When they are ready to be discharged, you, or a chosen support person, must accompany them home and stay with them for 24 hours post procedure.
Recovery - overnight patients
After the patient’s procedure has been completed, they will also be taken to the recovery area to be closely monitored by nursing staff. Time spent in recovery remains dependent on the type of procedure and how recovery is progressing.
When ready to leave recovery, the patient will be taken to a ward bed and their length of stay will depend on the type of procedure undertaken.
Have you prepared a comfortable environment?
When caring for a patient after a stay in hospital, it is important to remember to establish a comfortable and relaxing environment to help aid their recovery.
Have you ensured you can be present?
When taking the patient home after a stay in hospital, we recommend staying with them to help their recovery for the remainder of the day and overnight.
Has a post-surgery appointment been booked?
The patient will require a follow up appointment with their doctor if they have undergone surgery. If you are unsure if one has been scheduled, please follow up with the doctor post-surgery on behalf of the patient.
Have any necessary medication(s) been picked up?
Should the patient require any medication(s) after their procedure, these should be picked up prior to their return home.
Have you noticed any post-surgery issues?
If you or the patient notice any post-surgery issues occurring, do not hesitate to call their doctor on their behalf.