Day Surgery

Planning your Day Surgery at St Vincent's Private Hospital Sydney (PDF 889.5KB)

The Day Surgery Unit is located on Level 3 of the St Vincent’s Clinic Building, 438 Victoria Street, Darlinghurst. It is unique in offering patients access to a wide range of technically advanced surgical procedures that require either a ‘day only’ or overnight stay. The Day Surgery Unit accommodates patients who are a day only admission, those who are required to stay overnight or longer are transferred to the Private Hospital for the post-operative period.

The car park is accessed from Barcom Avenue, Darlinghurst.

Pre Admission health questionnaire and information forms

If your admission is within the next five (5) working days, please fax to 02 8382 6330 or scan and email to or you can hand deliver to the Day Surgery located on Level 3 of St Vincent’s Clinic, 438 Victoria St Darlinghurst, Sydney. If your admission is more than 5 working days away: Mail the forms using the enclosed pre-addressed, free-post envelope. Please allow for delays if posting over the weekend and ensure that the forms reach us at least five (5) days before the date of your admission.

Preparing for Surgery

The Patient Liaison Nurse will call you on the last working day before your admission. Please make sure we have the correct telephone numbers on your admission forms to ensure you can be contacted that day.

Do not worry if you have not heard from us by 6.00pm – we will definitely call you.

If your procedure is on a Monday, we will call you on Friday. If your procedure is the day after a public holiday we will call you on the last working day prior to the holiday.

If you have any questions or concerns about your day surgery you may call the Patient Liaison Nurse on 02 8382 6325 from 9.00am-5.00pm. If your call goes to the voicemail service, leave your name and number and the Patient Liaison Nurse will call you back.

St Vincent’s Private Hospital Day Surgery Unit operates under a ‘no escort, no procedure’ policy. Failure to provide details and have a responsible adult to collect you at the Day Surgery Unit and take you home will result in your procedure being postponed to a day when you are able to provide an escort.

Please arrive at the arranged time

You will be asked to arrive between 30 minutes and 2 hours before your operation, depending on your pre-operative preparation. It is important to be punctual to avoid delays or any inconvenience. You may be required to wait up to 90 minutes before your procedure is undertaken. At times, unforeseen circumstances may delay this longer. We endeavour to inform you of any unforeseen delays.

Admissions between 6.30am and 7.00am

Please use the main entrance of St Vincent’s Private Hospital at 406 Victoria St, Darlinghurst and register at the main reception desk in the foyer on Level 4. The receptionist will direct you to the Day Surgery Unit.

Admissions after 7:00am

Please use the main entrance of St Vincent’s Clinic, 438 Victoria St, Darlinghurst.

What to bring for Day Surgery:

  • All the medications you are currently taking in their original containers. Your GP or pharmacist can provide you with a list of these medications, the dose and times you take them.
  • Your eye glasses and case. If you wear contact lenses, you will not be able to wear them during the procedure so please bring your lens case for storage.
  • Any dentures or hearing aids and the containers in which to store them.
  • All entitlement cards eg, Medicare, Safety Net, Veterans Affairs and health fund cards, pharmaceutical entitlement number and your credit card.
  • All recent X-rays, scans or films.

Please do not bring:

  • Valuables, including jewellery, watches and electrical devices as there is no secure facility to hold these.
  • Large amounts of cash (unless settling your account in cash on admission).
  • Large luggage and suitcases as these cannot be accommodated

The hospital accepts no responsibility for loss of any personal items such as jewellery, hearing aids, dentures, glasses, etc.

Admission to hospital

In some circumstances an overnight admission to the Hospital that was not planned for you may be required. While no guarantee can be given, every effort will be made to accommodate your room request.

If you request and are allocated a private room, a gap payment will apply if your health insurance cover does not include private room fees. Costs of accommodation will be detailed on your estimate. If you are staying overnight, please bring a small overnight bag with your basic toiletries, sleepwear, robe and slippers and any other items you might need.

On the day before you are scheduled to have surgery: 

  • The Patient Liaison Nurse will contact you with your arrival and fasting instructions and will advise you regarding your medication.
  • A normal meal is recommended the evening before surgery unless your doctor instructs otherwise. Do not consume any alcohol.
  • Do not smoke for at least 12 hours prior to surgery.

If there is any change in your general condition such as a cold, or fever, please contact your doctor and the Day Surgery Unit on 02 8382 6325.

On the day you are scheduled to have surgery: 

  • Follow instructions from your doctor and nursing staff including fasting instructions. Wear loose, comfortable clothing.
  • Shower before arrival.
  • Do not wear hair spray, body lotion or perfume.
  • Do not wear any jewellery including wedding rings, earrings and piercings, makeup or nail polish.
  • Do NOT exercise on the day of your surgery or procedure.

On admission to the Day Surgery Unit:

  • You will be admitted by our patient services staff and taken to the preoperative area by the nurse.
  • Your anaesthetist will see you before your procedure. It is important that you discuss with the anaesthetist any specific medical conditions, drug sensitivities, past anaesthetic experiences or concerns you may have.
  • Staff will check that you have signed the consent for your procedure. If you have not done this prior to your admission, you will be asked to do so by your doctor prior to any sedation or anaesthetic being administered.

If you are having eye surgery:

  • Most eye surgery (cataracts and corneal grafts) is performed in the clothes you are wearing at admission. For your comfort and to assist the nursing staff please wear something that opens down the front.

After your procedure

For your safety, if your treatment involves a general anaesthetic or assisted local anaesthetic, you must be accompanied by a responsible adult on discharge from the Day Surgery Unit and have a carer to stay with you overnight after the procedure.

Our staff will help estimate your departure time and will notify a relative or friend when you will be ready to leave. We recommend you do not use public transport if you are going home on the day of surgery.

  • As a guide most patients are discharged four hours after their admission.
  • If any medication is prescribed for you to take home it will be supplied to you prior to your discharge. This may incur a charge levied on your health fund or patient bill.
  • We will provide light refreshments if appropriate after your procedure.
  • Staff will explain post-operative instructions before you leave the Day Surgery Unit.
  • You should arrange to stay with someone or have them stay with you overnight after a general anaesthetic.

When you arrive home you should follow these instructions.

  • After surgery you should rest for at least 12 – 24 hours and arrange for someone to stay with you in case you need assistance.
  • Do not drive a motor vehicle for 24 hours after surgery if you have had a general anaesthetic or sedation as you will not be covered by insurance in the case of an accident.
  • It is in your best interest not to make important decisions, operate complex or dangerous equipment, or do anything which requires you to be alert and coordinated for 24 hours after general anaesthetic or sedation.
  • A nurse will contact you the day after surgery to check on your progress.
  • If you become worried about anything you should contact your doctor or the hospital.

If you need to contact your surgeon urgently, and have been unable to do so, please telephone 02 8382 7111 and ask for the Assistant Director of Nursing who will assist you.