Back to Top My Pre-Admission (PAU) Appointment - The Ottawa Hospital


Depending on your health and personal situation, your Pre-Admission Unit (PAU) appointment will include pre-assessment from a specialized team of registered nurses, anesthesiologists, residents and health-care professionals who will help prepare you for your surgical experience.

My PAU Appointment

  • Your surgeon will schedule you for a pre-admission appointment at least 2-6 weeks before your surgery.  This is an important appointment to make sure you are ready for your surgery.  If you do not come, your surgery date may need to be delayed.
  • A registered nurse (RN) will obtain your health history at this appointment and explain any preparations you need to do before surgery.
  • Depending on your health, you may need to see an anesthesiologist at this appointment.
  • Depending on your health and your situation, sometimes your appointment may take place over the phone.  It is important that you are able to speak freely about your health history during this interview.
My PAU Appointment

Before my PAU appointment

You will be contacted to set a time and date for your appointment.

At that time you may be asked to view a series of videos describing various anesthetic options that you may be offered.  The videos will vary from surgery to surgery. Please view these videos before your appointment:

Reminder:  Only the videos you have been asked to view will likely apply to your surgery.

  1. General Anesthesia
  2. Spinal
  3. Epidural
  4. Patient Controlled Analgesia
  5. Upper Limb Block
  6. Lower Limb Block
  7. Paravertebral Block

What I must bring to the PAU Appointment?

  • Before this appointment, please read the my Surgery Pre-Admission Unit Patient Education booklet (maps are also included in this booklet for you to find your way). It be may helpful for you to bring a copy of this booklet with you to your PAU appointment.
  • IMPORTANT: Bring all your medications in their original labelled bottles to this appointment or have them readily available if this appointment is completed by phone.
  • You (and your family) should also know about important policies before coming to the hospital, such as hand washing, visiting hours and guidelines, smoking policy, scent-free and violence in the workplace.
  • Scent free environment: Please do not wear/use perfume, after-shave or other scented personal products. Anyone coming into the hospital with you or to visit are also asked not to wear scented products

How will the PAU Appointment help me plan for my Surgery?

Depending on how long you will be staying in the hospital, your PAU appointment will provide you with the necessary information and education material for you to prepare for your surgery.  The length of time you will be admitted to hospital is decided by your surgical team and may include one of the following hospital admission types:

  1. Day Surgery: You will have surgery and go home (discharged) on the same day of surgery. See Planning for my Outpatient Day Surgery – Surgical Day Care Unit.
  2. Overnight Surgery: You will have surgery and go home (discharged) the following day after your surgery by 7:00 a.m. See Planning for my Overnight Surgery – Surgical Day Care (overnight) Unit.
  3. Same Day Admission: You will have surgery and go home (discharged) more than 24 hours after your surgery. See Planning for my Inpatient Surgery – Same Day Admission.

My PAU AppointmentCanadian Anesthesiologists’ Society Patient Information Links

Other resources that may help you:

Last updated on: November 1st, 2023