Surgical and procedural admissions

If your child’s admission to hospital is planned, you will receive a letter outlining what you need to do and where you need to go on the day of admission. 

If you have any questions about your child’s admission or if you have misplaced the admission information, please contact us.

Confirmation of attendance/fasting

The pre-anaesthetic coordinator will phone you between 12.00 to 5.00pm two days prior to surgery to advise fasting instructions. 

Before coming to hospital

A visit to hospital can be frightening for a person of any age, but especially for children. Below are some tips to help you and your child prepare before, during and after their visit to hospital.

  • If your child is sick, has a fever (raised temperature), runny nose, cough, diarrhoea or if you cannot attend for any reason, please let us know as soon as possible.
  • For anaesthetic safety, your child MUST NOT have anything to eat (includes chewing gum) or drink after the specified time outlined in your letter, otherwise the procedure may be cancelled or delayed. 
  • If you would like your child to be admitted as a private patient, please arrange this before arrival so that your choice of doctor is available to do the surgery on the day.

Arriving on time

Arriving on time is extremely important as it allows all the health professionals to see your child. 

What to expect

  • When you arrive at PCH, go to the desk as instructed on your admission letter.
  • The admissions clerk will check in your child via the computer system.
  • Once on the ward, a nurse will admit your child and tell you what to expect for the day.
  • You and your child will meet the anaesthetist and surgeon before the surgery or procedure.
  • Your child’s admission time is not the time they will have their surgery or procedure.
  • Your child will be admitted as they appear in order on the theatre list. 

What to bring

  • medical equipment or disability aids
  • pyjamas (clean light weight, dressing gown and slippers)
  • toiletries – toothbrush, toothpaste, brush, comb etc
  •  casual and comfortable clothes and shoes for day wear
  • a favourite toy – please label it with your child’s name
  • disposable nappies if needed, wipes and disposal bags
  • schoolwork provided by your child’s school
  • if your child uses an assistive switch device at home, it may be compatible with the Patient Entertainment System (PES). Make sure to ask your nurse for a switch adaptor to get connected
  • if your child has any verbal communication difficulties, please bring in any devices or aids that will support their needs to be understood.

Please bring your GP’s business card/contact details along with your Medicare card. You will need to show our staff when you arrive at PCH so we can include their details on your child’s health record. 

We will send you and your chosen GP a summary letter about your child’s hospital visit and follow-up care. If you do not want us to contact your GP, please make sure you tell our staff.

What not to bring

  • Valuables, jewellery or large sums of money – although each bed has a safe, the hospital takes no responsibility for any lost property.
  • We respectfully request that siblings and visitors who are unwell, are discouraged from visiting.

What you need to tell us


Staff caring for your child need to be aware of any allergies your child may have. These need to be documented and your child will be given a red identification band to wear. Please discuss with the staff any allergic reactions your child may have to any medications, foods or other products.

Medications and complementary alternative medications

For your child’s safety, we need to know about all the medicines they have been taking including those prescribed by a doctor, over the counter medicines, natural alternative or complementary medicines ie. vitamins, minerals, tonics, herbal and homeopathic remedies. Please bring all these with you so that you can show your doctor, nurse or ward pharmacist.

Dietary requirements

Tell us about your child’s dietary needs once he/she has been admitted. However, if your child has very special dietary needs and you would like to discuss these before admission, please ask to speak to the Nutrition and Dietetics Department.