Outpatient Surgery Information for Patients

Your surgeon has scheduled an outpatient surgical procedure for you at J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital. In an effort to make your day of surgery as easy and comfortable as possible, we have a few suggestions and reminders.

Before your procedure, read the following instructions and/or request an "Outpatient Surgery Information for Patients" booklet from your physician so that you and your support person know what to expect. If you have questions, call the Hospital Admissions Office at (814) 643-8404 or contact your physician. 
We look forward to serving you and will make certain that your visit is as comfortable and convenient as possible.

About the Ambulatory Care Unit

The Ambulatory Care Unit is for patients whose surgery can be completed in a single day. You arrive in the morning, undergo surgery, and return home the same day. The brief stay in the Hospital will cost less for you and your insurance company and is often more convenient for you and your family.

  • Your surgeon will schedule the date of your operation during your office visit, and the Hospital admission clerk will contact you the evening before your surgery with your arrival time. This arrival time is NOT the time your surgery is scheduled; it will allow an ample period of time to prepare you for surgery. The admission clerk will also be asking you about your insurance and method of payment.
  • Patients and families are encouraged to bring books or personal music devices on the day of the surgery to enjoy during their wait times.
  • If for any reason you know you will be away from home the evening before surgery, please call the Hospital at (814) 643-8404 anytime after 4:00 p.m. to ask for your arrival time.

Pre-Admission Testing

Before your surgery, your surgeon's office will be arranging pre-admission testing for you. On the day of your testing, please plan to arrive at Central Registration in the Main Lobby fifteen (15) minutes prior to the time of your appointment. These fifteen minutes will be used for completion of your paperwork prior to testing. Pre-admission testing is done in the Outpatient Services Department. Please plan to spend at least 1 to 1 and a half hours at the Hospital for your testing, as it may take this long, depending on the tests ordered.
At the Outpatient Care Department, during your testing you will:

  • receive instructions from the Ambulatory Care Unit nurse
  • be interviewed by the anesthesia department
  • may be asked to give a urine sample
  • have your lab work completed
  • may have an EKG, if an EKG is medically indicated
  • may have a chest x-ray if you have had any recent respiratory problems.

Please bring your health insurance card to Central Registration and a list of current medications to your testing appointment. (If you do not have health insurance, arrangements for payment need to be made. You must call (814) 643-8844 to discuss payment arrangements.)

If you are diabetic, make sure you have an early appointment. If you have been told to fast, do not eat or drink past midnight, but please take your medications with a sip of water, unless instructed by doctor otherwise. We can give you juice and crackers when your lab work has been completed.

If you use the CART for transportation, be sure to alert your surgeon's office personnel to this, so they can schedule your appointment accordingly.

On the Day of Your Surgery

DO NOT EAT OR DRINK ANYTHING AFTER 12:00MIDNIGHT ON THE NIGHT BEFORE SURGERY OR THE MORNING OF YOUR SURGERY.  Your cooperation is required to help ensure your safety and comfort. Please follow these important instructions before you arrive for surgery.

When you arrive at the Hospital on the day of surgery you should report to the Hospitality Volunteer at the Information Desk in the Main Lobby or the Emergency Department Clerk if a volunteer is not available. When the Ambulatory Care Unit calls for you, you will be directed to the Unit and asked to put on a Hospital gown and prepare for surgery

Informed Consent

You will be asked to sign an informed consent if you have not signed one at your physician's office. Patients under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to complete this process. Without this informed consent, surgery will not be performed

Support Persons

Since you will be given anesthetic drugs, you will not be permitted to drive home. Please arrange to have a responsible adult available to drive you home after surgery. This person may wait with you in the Ambulatory Care Unit until the time of surgery. When you are taken to the Operating Room, they are requested to wait in the Main Lobby until you return from surgery to the Unit. They should be sure to check in with the Hospitality Volunteer at the front desk. The volunteer will alert them when the surgeon calls and when you are ready for them to return to the Unit. After you return to the Unit, this person may stay with you until you are discharged. We ask that no more than one person come you your bedside.

Families are encouraged to choose only one or two designated persons to wait in the Main Lobby. A clergy member may also be present. Do not bring children. If your family exceeds two persons, alternate between the lobby waiting area and the bedside.

Hospital Instructions for Patients

  • Leave all jewelry, money, and other valuables at home or with your family. Wear comfortable clothing which will be easy to take off and put on.
  • Do not wear any eye or facial make-up, fingernail or toenail polish.
  • If you wear dentures, partial plate, contact lenses, or any other prosthesis, you will probably be asked to remove them before surgery.
  • If you wish to bring with any personal care items (such as toothbrush, comb, toiletries, etc.) feel free to do so.
  • Since there is sometimes a need for longer post-operative observation, please be prepared for the possibility that it may be necessary to admit you to the Hospital or keep you longer than expected in the Ambulatory Care Unit.
  • If you develop a fever, cold, rash, or any other acute illness prior to your surgery, CALL YOUR PHYSICIAN.
  • If you choose to cancel your surgery and cannot reach your surgeon, contact the Hospital's Admission Office at (814) 643-8404.

Specialcare Extended Stay Program

The Specialcare Extended Stay Program provides the option for patients to stay in the Hospital the night before and/or after their outpatient surgery. This is a self-pay service, not covered by insurance. The charge covers required nursing care, meals, local phone calls and television accommodations.

If you plan to use this service or desire more information, please call the Hospital's Outpatient Care Department at (814) 643-8537 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. any weekday.

When You are Ready to Leave the Hospital

When the anesthesiologist is certain you are ready to go home, the Ambulatory Care Unit will discharge you by wheelchair to the person who has accompanied you. Upon leaving, you will receive follow up instructions to assist in your recovery.

Call your doctor if you experience any problems upon returning home after surgery and be sure to have a responsible person stay with you at home overnight on the day of your surgery.

Billing for Services

In addition to charges from your physician-rendered services, you will receive a bill from the Hospital for the use of its facilities, services and supplies. Also you will be billed by the radiologist, pathologist, anesthesiologist and other consultants in your care.

If you do not understand any of the charges, call the office of the doctor who sent you the bill.


J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital provides free parking for all visitors and patients. Please utilize this by using parking areas A and B (can be seen on campus map)

To the Support Persons, While You Wait

Please keep the Hospitality Volunteer at the Information Desk in the Main Lobby informed of your whereabouts. The volunteer will let you know when the surgeon calls to speak with you and when you are allowed to return to the patient's bedside.

While you are waiting,

  • Relax and enjoy a snack in the Hospital's cafeteria or vending area
  • Go online to search the Internet in the Community Health Resource Library
  • For your convenience, public telephones and restrooms are available at several locations on the Main Floor. Cell phones may not be used in patient care areas.

Please let the Hospitality Volunteer know if you need anything while you wait.

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