Patient resources Patient Information & Safety-admission information
St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba (SVPHT) is an acute-care medical, surgical and maternity hospital that has serviced Toowoomba, the Darling Downs and the surrounding rural communities for almost 100 years.
As the largest private hospital in the area with 189 licensed beds, SVPHT features premier, modern patient accommodation predominantly in single rooms.
Our corporate values of compassion, justice, integrity and excellence are at the heart of all that we do.
From the beginning to the end of life, and all stages in between, we are a trusted healthcare provider that continues to make an indispensable contribution to the communities of the Darling Downs and South West districts of Queensland.
We have a catchment area of more than 400,000 people, employ 750 highly qualified staff, and have over 400 Visiting Medical Officers.
St Vincent’s is in an exciting redevelopment and growth phase, and continues to attract leading specialists to treat patients with increasingly complex health problems.
We are very proud that St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba plays an important part in health workforce education and training. The hospital has an educational link with Australian Catholic University which has a clinical school on the hospital campus, and connections with the University of Southern Queensland, the University of Queensland Rural Medical School and the Southern Queensland Institute of TAFE. We look forward to providing you with the best possible care.
St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba was established by the Sisters of Charity in 1922 and we continue their mission today. We raise vital funds so you and your family can receive the best possible care when you need it most. The funds we raise from donations go towards essential equipment and services in our hospital. There are many ways that you can help including making a donation, hosting an event, leaving a bequest or volunteering. You can choose which ward or service you would like to make a donation towards, or you can ask us about our current philanthropic projects. All donations of $2 and over are tax deductible. For more information please contact the Executive Office on Lower Ground Level or phone 07 4690 4124.
- Breast surgery
- Cardiac diagnostic and interventional services
- Diabetes care
- Ear, nose and throat services
- Emergency care
- General medicine
- General surgery
- Intensive care
- Obstetrics / Maternity
- Oral maxillofacial surgery
- Pain specialist
- Respiratory medicine
- Vascular surgery
Our Mission, Vision & Care
As a Catholic healthcare service we bring God’s love to those in need through the healing ministry of Jesus. We are especially committed to people who are poor or vulnerable.
We lead through research-driven, excellent and compassionate health and aged care.
For those entrusted to our care it is:
- provided in an environment underpinned by our mission and values
- holistic and centred on the needs of each patient and resident
- high quality, safe and continuously improved to ensure best practice
- innovative and informed by current research, using contemporary techniques and technology
- delivered by a team of dedicated, appropriately qualified people who are supported in the continuing development of their skills and knowledge
- committed to a respect for life within the tradition of Mary Aikenhead and the Sisters of Charity
Preparing for admission
Thank you for choosing St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba as your healthcare provider. Our aim is to make your stay with us as comfortable and pleasant as possible.
To prepare for your upcoming admission:
- Check with your health fund that you are covered for your proposed surgery (see page 8).
- Please complete your pre-admission electronically via our website (link here).
- If unable to complete online, you can use the paper copies available from your Doctor or ring our call centre on 1800 655 099.
- A nurse from our Pre-admission Centre will call you to discuss your health assessment close to your intended admission date. A nurse may contact you to arrange an appointment at the Pre-anaesthetic Clinic.
Your surgeon can also request that you attend the Pre-anaesthetic Clinic. If this is the case, this appointment will be made by the surgeon’s rooms. The Pre-anaesthetic Clinic is situated next to the Pre-admission Service (Entrance 2, Ground Floor, Scott Street).
On the working day before your procedure, a nurse will contact you to confirm your admission time and to ensure that you understand your fasting times. Please be available to contact by telephone on that day.
- If you are being admitted for a day surgery procedure please arrange for someone to collect you and drive you home after your procedure. If this is not arranged, your procedure may be cancelled. They will also need to stay with you overnight.
If you have any concerns regarding your admission, please make contact with our Call Centre on 1800 655 099.
Before you come to hospital
Planning for your visit is important and will help you understand what to expect during your stay.
At St Vincent’s Private Hospital we are committed to providing you with the best patient care before you arrive, during your stay and after you leave our hospital.
Information from your doctor
Your doctor’s office should provide you with information regarding when you are coming including what time to arrive. Your doctor will discuss your procedure and should sign a consent form with you. During this time it is important to have any questions about your procedure answered by your doctor.
The questions to ask your doctor:
- The admission date and time
- The preparation required for surgery
- Do I need to alter my medications? e.g. before or on the day of surgery
- The best preparation for discharge home
- Will there be any restrictions after surgery e.g. driving, lifting.
On the day of admission
Where to arrive
Please present at the advised admission time to the Front Admission Desk at Entrance 1, accessible from Scott Street.
What to expect
When you present to the Admission Desk you will be greeted by a member of our clerical staff. You will be escorted to the Surgical Admission Unit and prepared for your procedure by our nursing staff.
You will be transferred to the Operating Theatre or the Endoscopy Suite from the Surgical Admission Unit.
Once your procedure is complete, you will return to Day Surgery for a period of time until you are well enough to be discharged. Patients staying overnight will be transferred to a room in one of our Units/ Wards.
Due to limited space, we request that only one (1) person accompanies you on admission.
If a child is undergoing a procedure, two (2) adults may accompany the child.
- Please shower on the day of admission prior to coming to hospital. Ensure you do not wear talcum powder, deodorant, perfumes, nail polish, make-up or hairspray.
- Wear comfortable clothes that are easy to remove.
- Do not wear jewellery or bring valuables with you to hospital.
St Vincent’s Hospital does not accept responsibility for valuables brought into the facility. You may choose to bring a mobile phone or device.
What should I bring in to hospital?
If staying overnight, please bring:
- Your current medications in the pharmacy-dispensed containers and a clearly written list of your medications, dosage and how often you take them.
- A clean pair of well-fitting slippers or low-heeled non-slip shoes.
- Comfortable night attire, dressing gown and personal toiletries.
- Comfortable day clothes.
- This booklet with your Request for Admission Form and any letters from your doctor for the hospital.
- All x-rays and scans.
- Personal equipment such as CPAP machines.
- Your Medicare Card.
- Your Pension Card/Health Benefits Card.
- Your Pharmacy Benefits/Safety Net Card/ WorkCover/ Third Party claim details/DVA Card.
- Your credit card or means to pay for any out-of-pocket expenses incurred.
- Aids you usually use such as glasses, hearing aids and walking aids (if you are bringing in a walking aid, please ensure it is in good condition). Denture cup (and supplies including denture case).
- Your current medications (in the original box) – please be aware all medication administration will be under the supervision of nursing staff.
- As you may be required to wait for your procedure, it is a good idea to bring a mobile device, book, magazine or hobbies to help occupy your time.
Your hospital stay
Speak up, we care
At St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba we understand that the hospital environment is different from your home environment and can sometimes be confusing, especially at night or if you are in pain. Please don’t hesitate to use the nurse bell at any time to have a nurse attend to your needs.
Located on the wall in your room is a Patient Communication Board. This is to assist with communication between staff and patients, and includes information about the name of your nurse, and your plan of care. If you (or your family) have any questions or concerns, you may use the care board to remind yourself about questions to ask your doctor and nurse.
Enter via Entrance 6, Herries Street.
All wards: 8am - 8pm or as advised
Clive Berghofer Intensive Care Unit:
- Visiting times are 8am- 8pm - but we do encourage a rest period from 1pm - 3pm.
- Relatives may stay with critically ill patients for extended periods.
- Arrangements for visiting outside usual visiting hours can be made in consultation with the nursing staff.
- If you have indicated that you would like a religious or Ex Service Organisation/Returned Services League visit, St Vincent’s Hospital will make every effort to facilitate this.
Staying overnight in hospital? While every effort is made to accommodate requests, we cannot always guarantee that a private room will be available on the day of admission.
Your room will be cleaned daily. Please notify a member of the nursing staff if you have a concern regarding any aspect of the housekeeping service.
The hospital provides free Wi-Fi for patients and visitors.
You can order fresh, cooked-to-order meals, which will be delivered in under 45 minutes from placing your order.
Room service is available from 6.30am to 6.30pm daily. To place a room service order, please use the telephone at your bedside and call Extension 3663. Room service menus are located on the tray table in all patient rooms.
If preferred, you can pre-order a meal or snack for delivery at a specified time and a family member or carer can place an order for you by telephoning (07) 4688 5588 (if calling from outside the hospital).
If you have special dietary requirements or food allergies, these will continue to be managed via our Clinical Information systems. Only food items that meet your individual requirements will be offered. Complex dietary requests will be referred to the hospital’s Clinical Dietitian. If you are on a modified or complex diet, a Room Service Assistant will take the menu orders. They can assist you with special needs to choose from the range of options available on the menu, so that good nutrition remains paramount.
St Vincent’s Private Hospital is a smoke-free environment. Smoking is strictly prohibited within the hospital grounds. If you smoke, you may want to discuss with your doctor the use of nicotine patches for your stay.
Pastoral Care Services
Coming into hospital is a different experience for everyone, and it may lead to feelings of isolation, uncertainty and vulnerability. To help with these feelings, you may find it helpful to speak with someone from our Pastoral Care Services. Pastoral Care staff offer spiritual and emotional support to patients and their families. They are sensitive to all religious, non-religious and cultural traditions.
Communion, the Sacrament of the Sick and the Sacrament of Reconciliation are available at your bedside. If desired, please ask your nurse to arrange a Pastoral Care visit.
The hospital chapel is located on Lower Ground, Entrance 1. All patients and visitors are welcome.
A multi-faith prayer room is available on Lower Ground, Entrance 1.
Teaching and learning
St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba is a teaching facility committed to assisting in the development of our upcoming generation of health professionals. Strong relationships have been fostered between our facility and a multitude of tertiary institutions.
Ongoing professional development of our staff is supported by these relationships, with students being directly supervised to ensure our excellent standards of care are maintained.
It is very important that you plan for being discharged before your operation. You may be tired for several days, even after minor surgery. If you have had an operation where you have an arm in a sling, need to use a walking aid or have restrictions on the way you can move or drive, you need to plan how you will manage obtaining fresh food, preparing meals and moving around your home.
Access to support should be considered:
- Equipment needs
- Nutrition support eg: Meals on Wheels
- Register with My Aged Care.
Discharge time from the Unit/Ward is 10.00am
Preparing to leave hospital
- Please arrange for a suitable carer to escort you home.
- Before you leave the hospital, make sure that you or your relative/friend knows how to care for you at home.
- Make sure you fully understand your discharge instructions. Your nurse will coordinate your discharge - please feel free to ask any questions.
- To help you remember, we will provide you with written discharge instructions.
- Make sure that you feel confident knowing how to manage your wound, showering, taking medications, and any other home-care instructions.
- Pack your belongings, and check your room carefully to ensure nothing is left behind.
- Collect your x-rays and any aids that you require for home.
- If you have any questions about medications (such as cost or reason for taking) ask to speak to the pharmacist.
Day procedure patients only
- You must ensure you have a suitable carer who is able to collect you following surgery and able to stay with you overnight after you go home. If you do not have a suitable carer your procedure may be cancelled.
- You are not permitted to drive a vehicle for 24 hours following a general anaesthetic, or on the advice of your treating medical officer.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to discuss with your nurse.
Allied health services
Your care team will refer you to these allied health practitioners if required:
- Occupational Therapists
- Speech Pathologists
- Diabetes Educators
- Hand Therapists
The Physiotherapist will ensure you are safely mobile and have a good understanding of any exercises you need to continue and any precautions you may need to take following your procedure.
An Occupational Therapist may assist your medical team understand your ability to manage your dayto-day activities of daily living and advise of any assistance you may need when you go home. They will also be interested in how your home environment is set up and may provide recommendations to ensure safety and maximal independence on discharge.
Allied Health Services depend on clinical need and health funding.
Information to include on the Patient Registration Form
- Your Medicare details
- Your Private Health Insurance details which includes your level of cover
- Your Pension Card/Health Benefits Card/DVA Card (if applicable)
- Your Pharmacy Benefits Card/Safety Net Card (if applicable)
- Workcover/Third Party Claim details (if applicable)
- Your request for Admission Form (a blue form)
We are here to help. If at any time you need assistance, please call 07 4690 4000.
Accounts and other information
If you are a member of a health fund, it is important to check the following prior to your admission:
- That your health fund will cover the cost of the procedure and accommodation.
- How long have you been with your fund? If you have been a member of your health fund for less than 12 months, your fund may not accept liability for the costs of admission.
- Is an excess payable for this admission? Most funds require an excess payment.
- Pharmacy and pathology, imaging, allied health services, x-rays and prosthesis may attract additional charges. Check if your fund covers any of these.
- Is inpatient physiotherapy covered under my health fund if this is required? See further information under “Allied Health Services”.
Phone calls and sundry item charges are not covered by health funds and will be payable on discharge.
Please note that the practitioners may separately bill medical and allied health practitioner fees. These are not included in the estimate from the hospital.
Accounts payment procedure
You will be provided with an estimate of your out-ofpocket expenses for your hospitalisation when you contact our Admission Call Centre. Please note this quote will not include additional charges such as doctors’ fees, pharmacy, pathology, etc as mentioned above.
Any portion of your estimated hospital account not covered by your health fund must be paid on admission.
Any additional costs incurred during your stay are payable on discharge.
Workcover and Third Party patients
Third Party, Department of Defence and WorkCover patients are only covered for shared accommodation and will incur additional charges for a private room. Total payment (aside from incidental costs incurred during your stay) must be made on admission, unless admission approval has been confirmed. If private room accommodation is requested and is available, the cost difference will also need to be paid on admission.
Total payment must be made on admission. Payment can be made by EFTPOS, credit card, cash or bank cheque.
Personal cheques and American Express are not accepted.
Other costs which may be incurred during your stay are payable on discharge. Please bring provision for payment of these fees on admission to hospital.
Patients who are covered by an international insurance fund with whom the hospital has an agreement will be required to provide an approval prior to admission.
All other patients covered by non-contracted international insurance funds will be required to pay in full prior to/or on admission.
Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) patients
Prior to admission, eligibility will be confirmed with the Department of Veterans Affairs. If a patient has a White card, pre-approval by DVA will be required and carried out as part of the eligibility process. Present your DVA card to Reception on admission.
While in hospital, our Clinical Liaison Nurse is the contact person for all DVA-related enquiries for discharge. They can assist with travel, organising any necessary aids for safe discharge and if required, facilitate referrals to Veterans Home care, community nursing and respite/convalescence.
Your doctor will need to obtain written consent for procedures such as anaesthetics and surgery. By coming to hospital you have given an implied agreement to general treatment which may be required for your condition.
St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba maintains a strong commitment to providing the highest level of confidentiality for every patient and acknowledges its responsibilities and obligations under the Privacy Amendment (Private Sector) Act 2000.
A requirement of your hospital admission is that you provide St Vincent’s Hospital with consent on whether or not you wish the hospital to use your personal information for the purposes you identify.
On admission you will be required to complete a form which will describe this and request your consent.
Advanced Care Directive
St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba is committed to continuing the healing ministry of Christ, striving to demonstrate Compassion, Justice, Integrity and Excellence in all that we do. Our Catholic identity calls us to value the inherent dignity of the human person and requires of us a special solidarity with the sick and the dying.
Many patients come to hospital with an existing Advance Health Directive. These are formal documents developed in consultation with your GP or specialist that outline your health preferences in the event you are unable to make these decisions. These preferences are for any future treatments and are not limited to end-of-life decisions.
Please inform our hospital staff if you have an Advance Health Directive and bring a copy with you and provide it to your care team on admission. We will then retain a copy in your medical records for the current and any future admissions.
While you are admitted to St Vincent’s Private Hospital Toowoomba, we remain committed to supporting the ongoing wishes of yourself and your family. Please discuss your wishes with your treating Medical Officer or Nursing staff.
Patient rights and responsibilities
To enhance our capacity to care for you, we need you to:
Prior to admission
- Advise your doctor what prescription or over the counter medicine you are taking and if you use tobacco, alcohol or other drugs.
- Advise of your allergies to medication, food or other causes.
- Tell us if you are seeing another provider as this may affect recommended treatment.
- Ensure you have all the information you want and need to allow you to understand options and possible outcomes of treatment.
During your stay
- Advise staff if your religious or cultural beliefs conflict with the recommended treatment.
- Know your medical history and give an honest medical history to hospital staff.
- Comply with medical instruction designed to aid your recovery or tell us when you aren’t following it.
- Think about how your behaviour affects other people’s rights and behave in a way that does not breach these rights.
- Take responsibility for paying any “gap” (the difference between the total cost of treatment less any Medicare or private insurance rebate).
- Advise staff if you have any financial difficulties in relation to your account.
I have a right to:
- Healthcare services and treatment that meets my needs.
- Receive safe and high quality healthcare that meets national standards.
- Be cared for in an environment that is safe and makes me feel safe.
- Be treated as an individual, and with dignity and respect.
- Have my culture, identity, beliefs and choices recognised and respected.
- Ask questions and be involved in open and honest communication.
- Make decisions with my healthcare provider, to the extent that I choose and am able to.
- Include the people that I want in planning and decision making.
- Clear information about my condition, the possible benefits and risks of different tests and treatments, so I can give my informed consent.
- Receive information about services, waiting times and costs.
- Be given assistance, when I need it, to help me to understand and use health information.
- Access my health information.
- Be told if something has gone wrong during my healthcare, how it happened, how it may affect me and what is being done to make care safe.
- Have my personal privacy respected.
- Have information about me and my health kept secure and confidential.
- Provide feedback or make a complaint without it affecting the way that I am treated.
- Have my concerns addressed in a transparent and timely way.
- Share my experience and participate to improve the quality of care and health services.
St Vincent’s Private Hospital has several car parking areas for patients, visitors and staff. Paid parking is available in the Scott Street car park, which is located behind the Impressions on Scott café (opposite Entrance 2 in Scott Street) as well as in the Entrance 4 car park located at the rear of the hospital and accessed from Curzon Street. This car park has special designated areas for Day Surgery patients and a special drop-off area for maternity patients.
Car parking tickets can be purchased through ticketing machines situated within the car parks and signs explain the parking zones and payment options.
Nominal fees apply for patients and visitors:
- 0-2 hours: $4
- 2-3 hours: $6
- 3+ hours: $8 (up to 12 hours)
- 24 hours: $15
Disabled parking is located near Entrances 1, 2, 3 and 4.
Parking in the streets surrounding the hospital is administered by the Toowoomba Regional Council and is free for up to three hours.
If you are staying for longer than 24 hours and not being collected please advise staff upon admission.
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