Being admitted into hospital

Key points about being admitted to hospital

  • Admission means going into hospital.
  • You may be admitted into the hospital for a day, overnight or even longer.
  • When you are admitted to the hospital, you will be receiving inpatient care.
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If you are having a planned admission, your GP or specialist doctor will write a referral letter to the hospital. You will then be contacted by the hospital to plan a date for you to be admitted. The admissions team will organise your stay in the hospital.

You may be asked to do the following before you are admitted to the hospital:

  • attend several appointments in the clinic a few days or weeks before admission
  • fill in forms
  • get some tests done such as blood tests, urine tests, x-rays or scans
  • not to eat or drink for a certain time before admission or follow other instructions if necessary.  

Once you arrive in the hospital, the admissions team will confirm your personal details and other important information to make sure you are the right person.

A wrist band will be given to you for identification purposes while you stay in hospital. The wrist band will include important information about you such as your name, date of birth, address and your National Health Index (NHI) number. 

During your stay, you will be given information about why you are in the hospital. A team of healthcare professionals and support staff will look after you and work together to plan your care and treatment. They will ask you a lot of questions at different times to find out what is happening to you. This will help them plan your care and provide any treatment if needed.

Hospital staff who may be involved in your care include:

You will also be asked to make decisions about your care and treatment. Your team of healthcare professionals will explain what will be involved in your care and the other options in a way you can understand everything easily.

Before any actions are taken by the hospital, you need to consent to the treatment. This is called informed consent. Informed consent can be given verbally or in writing and you need to have the capacity to make the decision.

There may be times when you are unable to give consent for urgent help, eg, when you are very sick or unconscious but need urgent treatment. In this case, your doctor, your enduring power of attorney (EPOA) or a family member may be able to make the decision for you. 

Sometimes, you may be asked to make decisions by filling out forms in advance, eg, whether you wish to be resuscitated if your heart stops or you stop breathing.

  • You can have someone you trust to help you make decisions. 
  • You have the right to be supported in understanding and completing any forms. 
  • You can say no to treatment. 
  • You can change your mind at any time about any decisions. 
  • You can say no to having training student doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals involved in your care. 
  • Your information will only be shared with others if relevant and necessary to your care and treatment. 
  • You can bring a support person with you to the hospital. 
  • Don't be afraid to ask questions about your care, treatment or medicines if you don't understand. 
  • Don't be afraid to let the hospital staff know about specific needs you may have. 

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Credits: Healthify editorial team. Healthify is brought to you by Health Navigator Charitable Trust.

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