Surgical team during surgery

Same-Day Surgery at Swedish First Hill

The Outpatient Surgery Center at Swedish First Hill is your assurance of the highest level of comfort and care — before, during and after your surgery.

When you arrive at Swedish First Hill for your surgery, your first stop will be to check in at Patient Registration on the first floor. You and your escort will be asked to arrive one to two hours ahead of your scheduled surgery to allow for final preparations at a comfortable pace.

Once you're checked in, we will take you and your escort to an area specially designed for efficient preoperative care. We will check your weight and vital signs, and show you to a curtained-off area where you can change your clothes. For your convenience, a hospital gown, robe and slippers will be provided, as well as a plastic garment bag to protect your clothes and belongings during your stay. A registered nurse will review your health history to make sure nothing of importance has changed and to arrange for any final pre-surgical testing if needed.

About a half-hour before your surgery, you and your escort will be taken downstairs to a large, comfortable waiting area just outside the surgical suites. There are actually two areas: one designed for adult patients and one for children, equipped with toys and games. Shortly before surgery, your anesthesiologist will review your medical history and discuss with you your anesthesia plan. Your surgeon will also answer any last-minute questions you may have.

While you're in surgery, Swedish also takes care of your designated escort — and any other family and friends who may be waiting for you — by providing comfortable waiting areas, as well as options for passing the time.

Once your surgery has begun, your escort should check in at the Surgery Information Desk, just off the main hospital lobby. The staff there will let your escort know when the procedure is over and when the doctor is on his or her way to discuss the results.

If your escort has errands to run or would like to take a walk or get something to eat in one of the many nearby restaurants, that's fine, too. He or she doesn't need to be tied to the hospital — just reachable. We provide beepers on loan for this purpose. They're available — free of charge — to all surgery escorts at the Surgery Information Desk.

About 45 minutes after surgery, you and your escort will move to our postoperative recovery area where the focus is on getting you ready to go home.

The outpatient recovery area is specially designed to promote a safe, comfortable recovery. The open floor plan allows recovery-room nurses to monitor your vital statistics and attend to your needs easily and efficiently. You'll have your own recliner outfitted with warm blankets and pillows. Your own clothes will be brought to you. You'll also have a privacy curtain, providing separation between you and other recovering surgery patients. And for everyone's mutual comfort, adults and children recover from surgery in completely separate rooms.

Recovery from same-day surgery is usually fairly quick — but everyone is different. That's why we won't discharge you until you are ready. Your vital signs need to be stable and any postoperative pain needs to be under control. You will be offered a light snack and something to drink.

Once you are physically ready to go home, a recovery-room nurse will review your discharge instructions with you and your escort. You'll be provided with any postsurgical supplies you may need. And if your surgeon prescribed any medications, you'll get them in the recovery area as well — saving you a trip to an outside pharmacy.