Day Care

Soon you will be admitted for surgery or an examination in Day Care to Diakonessenhuis Utrecht or Zeist. You will stay at the Day Care Unit or one of the other wards in the hospital. Your attending doctor will have told you about the surgery or treatment you will receive. This leaflet gives information about your stay in Day Care.

You could stay from several hours up to all day at the hospital. If you are admitted to the Day Care Unit and are not allowed to go home by the time the unit closes, you will be transferred to a different ward in the hospital.

If you live far away from the hospital you may wish to stay the night before and/or after your procedure in a nearby hotel. Diakonessenhuis has negotiated some special arrangements for its patients with hotels in the area. For more information please check this page.

Before your stay

Time of arrival

If you are admitted for an examination or Electrical Cardioversion, you will be told at the outpatient clinic which ward to go to and at what time.

If you are admitted for surgery a nurse or the ward secretary will call you in the afternoon on the working day prior to your admission. She will tell you when you have to arrive at the hospital. She will also tell you again whether you are allowed to have a light breakfast or should be fasting on the day of your admission. This will have been discussed during pre-operative screening too.

Inability to come

If you are ill on the date of your admission, please contact the ward that expects you immediately. If you are unable to come on your admission date for some other reason, you should contact the outpatient clinic of your treating physician at least 48 hours in advance. Someone else can then come in your place, and we can also reschedule your appointment.

What to bring

When visiting the hospital always bring the following items:  

  • A list of your current medication issued by your local pharmacy;
  • A valid ID-document (passport, driving licence or ID-card); 
  • The referral letter from your GP (if applicable);  
  • Your insurance data.  

Please also remember to bring:

  • Your current medication (for use during your stay);
  • Slippers;
  • Some magazines or music (MP3) if desired; 
  • If you wear contact lenses, bring the liquid and a container to store them, and your glasses if you want to;
  • When having varicose vein surgery: support stockings (one per leg);
  • When having knee or ankle surgery: a pair of elbow crutches.

The use of your mobile phone is allowed on the ward. Please be considerate of the other patients and use your phone in vibration mode only.

Why do you have to bring a list of your current medication?

When visiting the hospital you are obliged to bring a list of your current medication (a so-called AMO), because it is important that you are able to tell your physician exactly which medication you use. Your physician needs this list of your current medication to obtain a correct and full overview of your medical situation and to make sure you get the care you need. You are obliged to bring an AMO at every follow-up visit too. You can ask for a list of your current medication at your local pharmacy.

Contact Person

We ask you to provide us with the telephone number of your contact person. A nurse will inform him or her by phone call about your condition during your stay. To guarantee your privacy, information about your condition will only be given to this one person.


Visitors are not allowed at the Day Care Unit. During your stay nurses will inform your contact person about the course of the day. Visitors are allowed if you are staying in a different ward. In general, visiting hours are from 4pm until 8pm. Different visiting hours apply to some wards. For more information please read the leaflet ‘Informatie voor bezoekers’ (available in Dutch only). You can find this leaflet online.

Preparations at home

On the day of your admission for an examination as well as for surgery it is important that you:

  • Have a shower or a bath on the morning of your treatment;
  • Do not use any body lotion or facial cream;
  • Do not bring any valuables or large sums of money;
  • Arrange for someone to pick you up from the hospital (after surgery you are not allowed to drive or travel on your own).

Please note! The procedure/examination will only take place if you:

  • Do not wear any make-up;
  • Do not wear any jewellery (rings, watch, earrings, necklace etc.)
  • Piercings are allowed, unless:

They are in or close to your airways (mouth/throat);

  • Have sharp edges;
  • May lead to problems because of your position during surgery (for example a navel piercing whilst lying on your stomach).

If you come in for surgery do not depilate the surgical site at least one week prior to your surgery. It is advisable not to smoke eight weeks prior to your surgery.


You will be given information about the anaesthesia during pre-operative screening prior to your surgery. For information about your anaesthesia see the patient leaflet ‘Algehele en regionale anesthesie’ (available in Dutch only). You can find this leaflet online.


When coming in for an examination
When coming in for an examination, a staff member of the outpatient clinic will have told you - when making the appointment for admission - whether you are allowed to eat or drink.

When coming in for surgery
When coming in for surgery, it is important to fast prior to your surgery. This means that your stomach will be as empty as possible. It is important to fast because 

  • Food in your stomach may cause your stomach contents to enter your lungs, leading to severe pneumonia. 
  • If you have not been fasting, your surgery will be cancelled. This is done for your own safety.

Please keep to the following rules:

  • You may eat and drink as usual up to 6 hours prior to your admission;
  • You may drink only water (non-carbonated) up to 2 hours prior to your admission;
  • After that you are not allowed to have any food or drink, except for your prescribed medication (with one sip of water).

Note: Sometimes different instructions apply to your surgery. You will be informed about these during pre-operative screening.

Image of an instruction for fasting

Instructions for fasting


In general, you are allowed to take your medication as usual on the days prior to your admission and on the admission day itself. However, there are a few exceptions. For further information about these see the patient leaflet ‘Algehele en regionale anesthesie’ (available in Dutch only). Prior to your surgery the use of your current medication will be discussed at the outpatient clinic or during pre-operative screening. Prior to your examination the use of your current medication will be discussed at the outpatient clinic.

The day of your treatment

When you arrive

  • At the agreed time report to reception at the ward that expects you.
  • You will be met by the ward secretary or one of the staff nurses. She/he will show you to your room and bed.
  • Depending on your surgery/examination you will be provided with a hospital gown, which you will be asked to wear.
  • A nurse will help you prepare further. You will be asked some questions and prior to your surgery or examination you will be given your prescribed pre-medication.
  • When it is your turn, you will be taken out in your bed or chair to the operating room or treatment room. When applicable, you will be given the anaesthetic agreed by you and your anaesthetist.

After surgery/the examination

  • After surgery or an examination in one of the operating rooms you will be transferred to the recovery room. When your blood pressure and heartbeat have stabilized, you will return to the ward.
  • After an examination in one of the treatment rooms you will return to the ward immediately.
  • One of the ward nurses will inform your contact person about your condition and the course of your stay.
  • As soon as your medical condition allows this and after consultation with your nurse, you will be given a light meal.


Your attending specialist decides whether he/she will want to see you before you leave. You will have a discharge interview with a nurse. She/he will inform you whether you will be telephoned at home the day after your admission to ask about your condition. You will be given an appointment card for a follow-up appointment at the outpatient clinic, if necessary, and a medical leaflet giving instructions about your aftercare.

The nurse will inform your contact person in good time when you can be escorted home.


Should you experience any discomfort or complications within the first 24 hours, please contact the ward during office hours. At nights and at weekends you should contact the Emergency Room. After the first 24 hours you should contact your GP in case of problems.


Should you have any questions concerning your surgery or examination please contact the outpatient clinic of your treating physician.

Telephone numbers

Day Care Unit Utrecht
088 250 6628

Day Care Unit Zeist (A3/B3)
088 250 9510

Emergency Room Utrecht
088 250 6211

Textual comments

Should you find information missing or unclear, please let us know. Please report your comments on our information to [email protected].

Bijgewerkt op: 15 februari 2016

Code: DIAK12