It's good to prepare yourself for your hospital stay and to know what to expect.

Your admission date

If you have a planned admission, we will let you know the date and time that you should come in, either by letter or over the phone.

Your admission letter

Your admission letter will tell you what to do to prepare for your admission. Please make sure you follow any instructions about eating or drinking on the day of your admission. If you don’t, we may have to delay or postpone your treatment.


We may have to cancel your planned admission if a large number of patients need emergency care. If your operation is cancelled on the day of admission, we will re-admit you as soon as possible.

Before your admission it's a good idea to:

  • Let relatives or friends know that you are going to be in hospital. Give them the hospital’s telephone number and your ward’s name.
  • Cancel any regular deliveries, such as milk or newspapers.
  • Cancel any home help, such as meals on wheels or cleaning services.
  • Arrange for someone to take care of any dependent relatives and any pets.
  • Throw out any food that may go off while you are away.

Your hospital stay

What to bring:

  • Your admission letter
  • Details of your next of kin
  • All medicines that you use, including herbal or over-the-counter medicines and nicotine replacement therapies
  • Your medical card, if you have one
  • Details of your health insurance policy, if you have one
  • Clothing – bring nightwear including dressing gown and slippers. Your day wear should include comfortable clothes and underwear.
  • Toiletries and towels
  • Walking aid, hearing aid, glasses, contact lenses and dentures, if you use them

What not to bring:

  • A large amount of cash 
  • Too much clothing, as space is limited
  • Valuables and jewellery
  • Electrical equipment including radios, laptops, tablets, mobile phones, TVs, game consoles etc
  • Food
  • Alcohol or illegal substances
  • Cigarettes or any other tobacco products and e-cigarettes. The Mater is a no smoking hospital. During your stay, we can help you to manage your smoking – nicotine replacement (patches, gum, or inhalers) is available to you free of charge. Please ask your nurse or doctor about this. 

Patient property:

During your stay in hospital there is a locker beside your bed where you can store your personal belongings. We do not recommend using it for valuables as there is no lock. We ask patients to leave valuables at home wherever possible. If you have brought valuables with you, please ask a relative to take them home for you as the hospital cannot accept responsibility for their loss or damage.

Please be careful of your medical aids which assist you with your daily living such as hearing aids, dentures, eye glasses, walking sticks, zimmer frames, personal wheelchairs etc. as the hospital cannot accept responsibility for their loss or damage .