Prepare for Your Hospital Stay

Prepare for your visit

Thank you for trusting us with your care. Rest assured: your health and well-being is our top priority. Our staff and health care teams are dedicated to making sure that you and your family are safe, involved, respected and cared for.

header-title-decorationPrepare for Your Hospital Stay

Welcome to Health Services! We will serve you with the best possible care. You may be scheduled to visit one of our hospitals because of an acute illness, traumatic injury, planned surgery, or observation and tests. Here are some important things to know about our hospitals and our staff while you stay at one of our hospitals.

Health Services operates three academic medical centers and a world-renowned rehabilitation hospital for patients recovering from brain and spinal cord injuries. Our hospitals are teaching hospitals, so your care team may include residents, interns and medical students. Residents and Interns have their medical degrees and are now training at one of our hospitals. An attending physician will lead your care team.

These are the Health Services hospitals that provide inpatient services:
LA General Medical Center
Harbor-UCLA Medical Center
Olive View Medical Center
Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center

How do I prepare for a stay at a Health Services hospital?

  • Pre-Anesthesia Testing Clinic Appointment: The operating room may call you within a couple of days to arrange your appointment with pre-anesthesia testing. This appointment is completed before your hospital stay.
  • The day before surgery: The operating room will call you to confirm your surgery and the arrival time before your surgery. If you do not receive a call by 3:00 p.m., or if you need to cancel your surgery, please call them.
  • Day of surgery: Please arrive on time to surgery reception at the time given by the surgery scheduling office. Please bring a friend, family member or caregiver with you to drive you home after your surgery. Your surgery may be cancelled if we cannot verify your ride.
  • What to bring (and wear) on the day of your surgery:
    • You must bring a valid, picture ID
    • Bring any medications you are taking in their original pill bottle
    • Bring a bag for your toiletries
    • Bring comfortable, loose clothing like pajamas
  • What NOT to bring (or wear) on the day of your surgery:
    • Jewelry, money and valuables (or if you do, leave them with a trusted adult)
    • Unaccompanied young children
    • Do not wear fake eyelashes, body piercings or fake nails or nail polish

Your Room at a Health Services Hospital
Patient rooms at a Health Services hospital are assigned by the type of care needed and by room availability. You will have a nurse call button located at your bedside, which is a direct line to the nursing station. Most patient rooms also have a telephone at their bedside. For local calls, dial “9” and the phone number. To make a long distance call, you can purchase a pre-paid phone card at most of our hospital gift shops.

State law requires your hospital to be a smoke free environment for your health and the health of others – patients, visitors and staff. If you smoke, and want to quit, please call 1-800-NO-BUTTS (1-800-662-8887).

Your safety is important to us. Many practices and procedures are in place at Health Services to protect your well being and to ensure the best medical outcome possible. You can play an important role in keeping yourself safe by following the instructions of your health care team during your stay.

Financial Services
Your stay with us should be free of financial worries. A financial services representative will speak with you before or even during your hospital stay with us to discuss with you programs that may pay all or part of your hospital charges. The representative will assist you and take medical insurance information from you, and help you with completing a Medi-Cal application. If you have any questions and wish to speak to a financial services representative during your stay with us, ask your nurse to call a financial representative to come visit with you.

Clinical Social Work Services
Social workers provide emotional support for patients and their families. If you need referrals to community resources or help with personal or family problems, ask to speak with the social work department located in the hospital.

Pastoral Care Services
Clergy from Catholic, Jewish, Protestant, and other religions volunteer their services to offer spiritual and emotional support to our patients and their families. If you wish to speak to a member of the clergy, ask a staff member to help you. Our hospitals also have a chapel for you and your family.


Please check with your health care team on what the visiting hours are. Different units within the hospital may have different visiting hours. Visiting hours may be suspended or changed depending on your health and condition. Children must always be under the supervision of an adult (other than the patient) throughout the visit.

Blood Donor Center
Because we need to keep an adequate blood supply, we encourage everyone to donate blood. Ask your friends and family to donate blood during their visit to our hospital. It could save a life!