COVID-19 - FAQ: Elective surgery
WBHHS remains committed to ensuring the most time-sensitive and medically necessary care, whether COVID-19 related or not, can be delivered by our hospitals.
As we deal with the unprecedented situation being experienced across the world because of COVID-19, some of our outpatient services will be impacted.
Impacted services include non-urgent surgery and pre-admission or anaesthetic appointments. Because of this you may have received a notification that your surgery or appointment has:
This document answers questions you may have about why your non-urgent surgery has changed in response to COVID-19.
Why has my surgery been changed?
Changes to surgery have been made to protect patients and staff in the following ways:
Why has my anaesthetic or pre-admission appointment been changed to a phone or telehealth appointment?
If you have received notification that your appointment has changed to a phone or telehealth appointment, it’s because your clinical team is confident they can provide you with the care you need without physical contact.
My anaesthetic or pre-admission appointment has been changed to a telehealth appointment. What is telehealth?
The Queensland Health Telehealth Portal provides an easy, safe and secure way to videoconference (VC) with your doctor or health professional from within a web browser on your personal computer (PC), laptop or Mac; or through an app on your tablet or smart phone.
If you have received a notice that your pre-admission or anaesthetic appointment has changed to a telehealth appointment, you will be contacted with further information and support on how to set up telehealth on your personal device.
My anaesthetic or pre-admission appointment has been changed to a phone or telehealth appointment. Will I be called or seen by a doctor, nurse and/or pharmacist?
Your appointment will still be conducted by a clinician from your treating team. Depending on your situation, your clinical team may include a specialist doctor, a medical registrar, a specialist nurse or an allied health clinician such as a pharmacist.
My surgery was postponed. Will I get another surgery date?
Yes, you will be offered another surgery date as soon as we are able to provide you with a new date. You will remain on the surgical waiting list and will not lose your position on the waiting list.
While responding to COVID-19, clinical teams are triaging patients to ensure the most urgent patients are seen first.
Please continue to monitor your condition with your General Practitioner (GP) or clinician who referred you for your surgery.
My surgery was postponed but my condition is worsening. What do I do?
Contact your GP to discuss your care and to provide advice on how to manage your condition. If required, your GP may request the hospital review your case.
If your condition is too serious to wait or is an emergency, call 000 and ask for an ambulance, or attend your closest hospital emergency department.
I received a message that I am still required to attend my upcoming surgery, but I am sick or in self-isolation or quarantine. What should I do?
To ensure the health and wellbeing of all patients and staff, if you are currently;
Please advise the hospital as soon as possible so they can notify your treating clinical team and arrange another surgery date for you at a later date.
I received a message that I am still required to attend my upcoming surgery. Why was it not postponed?
Your clinical team has requested you proceed with surgery because of your condition.
What do I need to know prior to coming to hospital for my surgery?
I would like to know more about COVID-19
To stay informed and read the latest announcements about COVID-19 and up-to-date advice for your situation, go to www.health.qld.gov.au/coronavirus.
Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time.
If your health deteriorates or you have any further questions regarding your condition, please contact your GP.