Admission for surgery – what to bring to the Hospital

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This article will help you to prepare the essential items that you need to bring to the hospital for your admission. The list here is just a suggestion or a guide only, and you may make your own adjustment, based on your own preference. Decide which items you will need for a comfortable stay and recovery. However, you should not over-pack so as to inconvenience everyone, including yourself during your admission or discharge. The items will also depend on the expected length of stay in the hospital.

List of things to bring:

  • Your pre-admission hospital documents (assuming that you have already done the pre-admission registration).
  • Your identification documents such as passport (if you are a foreigner) or identification card.
    Previous investigation reports such as lab tests, imaging documents (including films or CD), ECG etc (especially if these were done elsewhere).
  • If you are on specific medications for your illnesses (other than multivitamins), please bring them along. Or prepare a list of these medications and pass it to the admitting staff nurse.
  • The hospital will provide hospital gowns, disposable mesh underwear, and sanitary pads while you are here. You may opt to wear your own gowns, underwear, or sanitary pads if you want. However, this is only allowed if you are recovering well and are already ambulating on your own.
  • Bring a set of loose-fitting clothes (including innerwear) to wear upon discharge.
  • Toiletries – pack a few personal items, such as a toothbrush and toothpaste, lip balm, comb, soaps and hair shampoo, facial cleanser, shower cap. A travel-size packaging will be ideal. The hospital usually provides soap only, but you might prefer your own. A pre-pack toiletries kit is available for purchase in the hospital if you want it.
  • Skin care – you can bring along your regular skin care such as moisturizer or toner. Please discuss this with the medical staff whether it is safe or appropriate to be used during your stay.
  • Hair tie if you have long hair.
  • Bring your own bath towel for your own comfort. The hospital will provide one if you request for it. A sweater, especially for night use as it can be quite cold due to the air-conditioner.
  • A pair of flat, comfortable shoes for walking, plus a pair of non-slip slippers for toilet use and a pair of socks.
  • A box of tissues and wet wipes.
  • Eyeglasses with the case (for those who are wearing contact lenses).
  • If you are using dentures, please bring the cleaning container.
  • Charger for your electronic devices.
  • Pen and a notepad – these are useful for you to jot down things that you may want to ask the doctor and to record things that you may need to remember (the do and don’t at home after discharge). You can use an electronic device for this purpose if you prefer.
  • Earphones for phone or computer – when listening to music or doing office work.
  • Earplugs and eyemask if it will help you sleep better.
  • If you are dependent on certain equipment, you can bring them along (such as a walking aid or hearing aid).
  • Snacks (crackers, biscuits in small individual packaging) and something to read.
  • Please bring enough face masks for your stay in the hospital.

Hospital policies are such that they won’t take responsibility for lost items. Therefore, you should not bring:

  • Jewellery
  • Expensive watch
  • Valuables items
  • Too much cash
  • Electronic devices such as tablets or laptop, especially if your admission is for surgery. There is no locked storage for these bulky items in your room during surgery and when you are recovering. When you are feeling well following surgery and able to take care of yourself, you may ask someone to deliver these items to you if you really need them.

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