Preparing for Surgery

What to bring on Day of Surgery for throat cancer

What to bring with you on the day of surgery:

  • Your health insurance plan card
  • Your prescription insurance plan card
  • A list of all the medications you currently take
  • Personal identification (such as a driver’s license)
  • A check or credit card for deductibles, co-payments or deposits
  • A copy of your advance directive, or living will
  • Essential personal items, such as glasses (and eyeglass cases), dentures or hearing aids
  • Cell phone charger

What to NOT bring with you on the day of surgery:

  • Valuables, such as jewelry, watches, cash and credit cards (Valuables should be sent home with your family)
  • Medications from home

Important team members providing after surgery care:

  • Care coordination (310) 267-9700
    • Case managers work with you, your family and your healthcare team to coordinate your hospital stay. They are also available to assist with the planning and coordination of your transition from the hospital to home or to other care facilities.
    • Clinical social workers can assist you and your family members with any personal, emotional and/or family problems and difficulties due to your illness or injury. Individual, family and group support for sudden illness, separation from home and job, bereavement, substance abuse, domestic violence and other issues can be arranged, as well as referrals to community resources.
    • Resource care managers work in collaboration with case managers to help you transfer to a continuing care facility (a rehabilitation center or skilled nursing home) or home with Home Health Services upon your physician’s recommendation. Your individual needs and continuing care preferences will be carefully evaluated, and your insurance coverage will be considered and reviewed.
  • Clinical dietitians (310) 267-9214
    • Working closely with your healthcare team, clinical dietitians ensure that you are receiving the appropriate balance of nutritional meals throughout your stay.
  • Rehabilitation staff (310) 825-5650
    • Physical, occupational and/or speech therapists may work with you to help you regain your strength and function. If required, an individualized treatment plan will be developed to help you meet your specific goals and provide recommendations for post-discharge care.
  • Volunteers (310) 267-8180
    • Volunteers work throughout the medical center and are available to assist hospital staff and patients.

Alternative care options available after surgery:

  • PAC (People-Animal Connection) Program (310) 267-8184
    • PAC is a volunteer group that provides animal-assisted therapy and companionship to aid in the comfort and healing of critically ill patients and their families at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. Evidence shows that PAC visits help lower patients’ blood pressure, speed the healing process, improve results of physical therapy and improve mental well-being. If you are interested, please discuss the option with your physician to make sure you are medically cleared for a pet visitation.
  • Paula’s PetPal Place (310) 267-8184
    • Paula’s PetPal Place is a service that allows patients to unite with their personal pets during hospitalization at UCLA Health. The focus of Paula’s PetPal program is the personal connection between patients and their pets. For many people, a pet is part of the family. When patients are hospitalized for long periods of time, they miss their pet tremendously. Bringing patients together with their dogs or cats can help their mental and emotional well-being. These visits not only boost patients’ spirits, but promote healing.
  • Massage therapy (310) 206-3055
    • Massage therapy for relaxation and stress reduction is available for patients and families. Ask your nurse for more information.
  • UCLA Integrative Therapy Program
    • An integrative therapy session incorporates three gentle healing modalities (Healing Touch, essential oil therapy and yoga therapy) to address the primary symptoms of pain, anxiety, nausea, insomnia, constipation and exhaustion. Ask your nurse for more information.

Information regarding medical bills and payments:

  • Hospital Related Billing Inquiries: (310) 825-8021
  • Physician Related Billing Inquires: (310) 301-5200

After you leave the hospital, you will receive several bills for services provided during your hospital stay. You will receive a hospital bill, which will include room charges, food, medical supplies and any tests and procedures that you may have had. You will also receive bills from your doctors for their medical and surgical care.

Our Patient Business Services Department will file your claim directly with your primary and secondary insurance carriers. Please note that you are ultimately responsible for the charges incurred during your stay in the hospital. If you have not received notice of payment from your insurer within 60 days after service, we may seek your assistance in contacting the insurance carrier directly to encourage prompt payment.

Safety guidelines regarding eating and drinking prior to surgery:

  • Adults (over the age of 12) may have solid foods and dairy products until 8 hours before their scheduled arrival time at the hospital or surgery center.

**NOTE: scheduled arrival time is typically 2 hours prior to the scheduled surgery time**

  • Alcoholic beverages should be avoided within 8 hours of the scheduled arrival time.
  • Clear liquids (NOT milk or dairy products) are actively encouraged until 2 hours before arrival time.

**NOTE: scheduled arrival time is typically 2 hours prior to the scheduled surgery time**

    • Clear, see-through liquids include:
        • Water
        • Clear fruit juices such as apple juice and white cranberry juice
        • Plain tea or black coffee (NO milk or creamer)
        • Clear, electrolyte-replenishing drinks such as Pedialyte, Gatorade, or Powerade (NOT yogurt or pulp-containing “smoothies”)
        • Ensure Clear or Boost Breeze (NOT the milkshake varieties)
  • Here is a table to explain the timing of when to stop oral intake. The patient should look for the scheduled arrival time, and when to stop eating solid food. We encourage patients to continue to drink clear liquids as they wish until 2 hours before arriving at the hospital or surgery center.