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Your Hospital Stay

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Information to help prepare you for your arrival, including legal documents, advice about Care Partners, preparing for surgery and what to expect during your stay.

Our goal is to make your hospital stay as comfortable and satisfying as possible.

Smoke Free

The UVA Medical Center is entirely smoke free. Free comfort kits are available in the gift shop to help you cope with not smoking.

Admission

During the admission process we will review medicines you are taking, any allergies you may have and your medical history. We will review any special needs you may have during your hospital stay. We will also make a list of the belongings you have with you. We would prefer that you send your valuables home, but we do have a safe if necessary. We will review at-home health services or special care equipment that you may need when you return home.

Electronic Medical Record

We now use a computer to document your care. You may view your information on the screen with us, but we ask that you do not touch computers or other electronic equipment.

Care Partners

Care Partners (PDF) are people you designate to be active members of your healthcare team. They are given a special security code and help keep family and friends informed about your condition. You are asked about Care Partners during the admission process but can name or change a Care Partner at any time during your hospital stay. You can have up to two Care Partners, if you wish.

Visitors and Visitor Lounges

A maximum of two people, including Care Partners, are permitted at the bedside at one time. All visitors must wear a pass.

Preparing for Surgery

Learn how to get ready for your surgery with our pre-op guide (PDF).

Identification

For your safety, you will receive an ID band to wear on your wrist. Staff must confirm your name and date of birth before performing procedures or giving you medicines. We use a computer scanner to increase patient safety and decrease healthcare errors. We will also put a red wristband on if you have allergies (including Latex) and a yellow wristband if you are at risk for falling.

Patient Food Service

Catering-To-You is the service we use to bring you the diet ordered by your doctor. A catering associate will help you make your meal and snack choices daily. If you are placed on a restricted diet, the associate will talk to you about it. If you arrive late in the evening, talk to your nurse about food options. New parents are offered a celebration meal prior to discharge. Children and teens enjoy a menu designed specifically for their age and needs. If you have any special dietary requests, please talk with your healthcare team.

Patient Rooms

Our hospital beds are electronically operated. They have a call button and controls for lights, phone, television and radio. Your nurse will show you how to use the bed controls and tell you about room features for your comfort and safety. If you have a roommate, please respect his/her privacy and need for quiet. Bathrooms are for patient use only.

Quiet Time: On the patient units, quiet time is observed in the afternoon and at night. We ask everyone to keep their voices low to allow patients to rest. We offer earplugs or headphones for the pillow speaker on your bed if noise is a problem. If you have any questions, ask your nurse.

Telephones

We ask that friends and family calling to check on your condition call you, your Care Partner or your family directly. On the telephone at the bedside, you can make outgoing calls 24 hours a day. These phones do not accept incoming calls between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m. Dial '9' for an outside line and ‘0’ for the hospital operator. For long distance calls, dial 1 + 0 + area code and the number to make a collect call or use a phone card, which are sold in the gift shop. For 800 numbers, dial 9 + 1 + plus the number.

Televisions and Music

Each patient bed has access to local FM music stations, stations from Direct TV and special health programs. Ask us for help with closed captions, Spanish programs or headphones to use with the bed control.

Your Belongings   

During the admission, transfer and discharge process, we will list belongings brought with you. We ask that you send valuables home, but we have a safe you can use if you’d like. Items like dentures, glasses and hearing aids should be kept visible and within easy reach. Use of personal electronic devices (phone charger, laptop) in the hospital is discouraged. If you bring them, they are your responsibility. They may be plugged into any outlet that is at least five feet from your bed. For your safety, personal electronic devices used in your bed must be used on battery power only.

Pain Control

We want to know if you have pain or discomfort. We will make every effort to help you control your pain. Not all pain can be eliminated, so the nursing and medical team will ask you to rate your pain using the UVA Pain Rating Scale (PDF). It's important to treat pain before it gets out of
control. At any time, tell your healthcare provider:

  • ƒƒWhen your pain began and how long it lasted.
  • Is it a new pain?
  • ƒƒWhere you feel your pain. Is it deep or does it travel on your body?
  • ƒƒHow much your pain bothers you, and how it feels (sharp, dull or ache).
  • ƒƒWhat you are unable to do because of your pain.
  • ƒƒWhat makes your pain feel better and what makes it feel worse.

If you feel that you need more information, your nurse will contact our Pain Nurse Specialist to help you.

UVA Patient Handbook

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