In normal situations not involving an emergency your doctor will have referred you to the hospital for treatment.
Some hospitals, and depending on your illness, have pre-admission clinics for patients. A pre-admission clinic can take place up to 2 weeks prior to surgery or treatment and gives you the opportunity to complete any paperwork necessary and also informs you of the practicalities to expect on the day of your admission, for example where to go.
If you have been scheduled with the hospital, most major hospitals will send you a letter of admission from the hospital advising you of the date of your provisional booking. If you require an interpreter you can request one at this stage.
On the day of admission, you will need to report to the admissions desk (unless otherwise instructed at a pre-admission clinic).
Items to bring with you:
- letter of admission
- private X-rays (where applicable)
- medicare card
- health insurance details
- pensioner Benefit or Health Care Card
- nightclothes and dressing gown (for overnight stay)
- comfortable day clothes
- footwear with non-slip soles
- personal toiletries (towels are provided)
- current medication
Hospitals do not accept responsibility for valuables or personal items, so do not bring unnecessary items.
All Medicare ineligible patients will normally have to provide an assurance of payment before treatment is provided. This assurance may take the form of:
- credit card imprints – the credit card limit will be verified
- cash to cover the estimated cost
- bank cheque to cover the estimated cost
The payment for expected length of stay normally needs to be paid seven days prior to admission.
In the event of an emergency call ‘000’ or ‘112’ if you are ringing from a mobile phone. An ambulance will collect you and will take you to the hospital. You will be given the option of going to a public or private hospital. If you are covered by private health care, and have selected private hospital coverage, it is wise to go to a private hospital. Your waiting time should be shorter than through the public hospital system. The hospital staff will arrange your admission into the hospital directly with the Ambulance paramedic upon your arrival at the hospital.
If you are taken to a public hospital by someone else other than an ambulance paramedic, go straight to Casualty to be admitted.
All public hospitals accept emergencies, regardless if you have documents on you or not, or if you are a resident or an overseas visitor. If your situation is not an emergency, you may be required to wait as public hospitals can be busy.
You may be asked for any of the following documents or items. Again, you will treated in an emergency regardless if you have these or not.
- Medicare card
- Doctor’s referral letter, if relevant
- X-rays if requested by your doctor
- Any medications you are taking. Please ensure they are in the chemist’s original, labeled packaging together with repeat prescriptions
- If you are being admitted under workers compensation or Third Party Insurance, then details of the compensation or insurance.