About your operation
Anyone about to undergo an operation is naturally apprehensive. In order to assist your preparation, we would appreciate it if you would read the following prior to your consultation or admission to hospital. Please be assured that our team is committed to make your stay in Hospital as comfortable as possible and that the most up to date techniques and care will be used for your recovery after surgery.
Hospital Booking: Our office staff will arrange your hospital booking. You are usually admitted on the day of your surgery, or the day prior to your surgery at the discretion of your surgeon. These arrangements may include a pre-admission health check by the hospital several days prior to admission. Your health fund may have certain waiting periods for pre-existing conditions or restriction that may affect your coverage. There is a possibility your surgery may be cancelled in these situation so please check with your health fund prior to going ahead with surgery if you are in doubt about your level of health cover.
Radiology: Please bring all of your x-rays, scans and reports to the hospital. In many cases, your surgery cannot proceed without these scans and if you forget your scans then in some cases your operation may need to be cancelled.
Pathology Tests: During your operation some tissue removed at surgery may be sent to the pathologist for important microscopic histological examination. Blood tests may also be required.
Sometimes the pathology testing may incur extra fees that are beyond our control.
Assistants: For major operations, your surgeon will usually require an assistant who is often another surgeon or a doctor with experience in the procedure being performed. This will usually not involve an extra fee but in some cases, health funds may refuse to pay an assistants fee and then you would be liable for the extra fee.
Anaesthetist: Your anaesthetist is arranged at the time of hospital booking. They will normally see you in hospital just prior to your operation to do a physical examination and arrange any test or pre-medication they feel is necessary. If you are a smoker it is in the best interests of your health to stop smoking completely at least 4 weeks before a general anesthetic. Most of our anesthetists charge a gap payment that is not covered by your health fund. We will provide you with the necessary contact numbers to enquire about the amount of gap payment. Under Federal Law, it is your responsibility to contact the anesthetist’s rooms to find out how much this will be prior to your surgery.
Post-Operative care: While in hospital, your care will be provided by your surgeon. In some situations, by prior arrangement, other surgeons in the Southern ENT practice may visit and care for you. Your follow-up appointment is usually made prior to surgery. If this has not occurred then we will arrange this for you prior to discharge. Other specialists may be involved in your care if medically necessary and you may incur additional fees for this. Reports of your progress will be sent to your GP or referring Specialist at regular intervals and on completion of your treatment.
Our practice nurse will call you after your discharge from hospital to check on your progress. She will inform your surgeon if there are any problems so that the appropriate care can be provided for you. We feel that this service provided by Southern ENT is an important aspect of your care.
After discharge your routine post-operative care is provided through the rooms of Southern ENT during normal business hours. Please do not hesitate to telephone the rooms and speak to our staff if you have any concerns after your surgery. An earlier post-operative appointment will be arranged for you if required. If an emergency situation arises after hours that require urgent medical attention then you should present to the Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) emergency department or call an ambulance and go to your nearest emergency department. There is an ENT registrar available for emergencies after hours at FMC and the surgeons from Southern ENT are also consultants at FMC. In an emergency situation, it may be more appropriate based on good medical reasons for you to be admitted to FMC rather than Flinders Private. You can be assured that you will receive exceptional care at FMC under our supervision.
Wound care and removal of Sutures/Staples: Most ENT procedures do not require the removal of sutures. Often self-dissolving sutures are used which do not need removal. If you need sutures or staples removed after discharge from hospital, an appointment for this will be arranged. Sometimes after discharge from hospital, a problem with your wound may arise which causes you some concern. If you have any concerns in the immediate post-operative period please telephone our rooms first for advice. This will usually resolve any concerns, and if necessary an earlier appointment can be made for you to be seen. If an urgent situation arises after hours then it may be necessary for you to attend the Flinders Medical Centre Emergency Dept.
Your Operation: We want you to be happy with the plans for your surgery. Please ask if there are any questions on the following:
• The reasons why we have recommended surgery and possible alternative treatment options
• Any risks involved
• The length of hospital stay
• The amount of time off work required
• Any out of pocket expenses
• Your post-operative appointment
• Medical and carer certificates
We pride ourselves on the care we offer to our patients. If you have any questions before surgery we want to answer them to your satisfaction. Please do not think you are troubling us should you require further information.