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Clinical Specialties - Rehabilitation

Home Preparation

Once you come home after your surgery, you will need to take extra care in order to prevent falls and injuries while you recover. There are lots of small changes you can make now in order to prepare your home and make it a suitable environment for a speedy and safe recovery.

Home Preparation Form

As part of the discharge planning process, the San Rehabilitation team in conjunction with your doctor, will determine whether you are able to return directly home after surgery or will be requiring an inpatient rehabilitation stay. A suggested rehabilitation program will be identified based on your surgical recovery and information that you have provided to us prior to admission.

When you visit your specialist, they will provide you with a copy of the 'Your Guide to Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitation' booklet. which has a pull-out Home Preparation Form in the centre. This form will need to be completed and brought with you to prehabilitation and Pre-admission Clinic (PAC). At prehabilitation or PAC it will be reviewed by an occupational therapist (OT) who will determine what changes are recommended in your environment to ensure a safe return home.

If you did not receive this booklet a copy is available here, along with the Home Preparation form.


Home Preparation Checklist

San Rehabilitation has provided you with a checklist to assist with this process, and has also provided a bathroom diagram showing you some tips for a safe bathroom after surgery.

Please read the following home tips and take action on any items that may apply to you. 

  • Appoint a recovery coach
  • Remove throw rugs and tape down edges of the carpets/mats that cannot be removed
  • Remove clutter and clear pathways of furniture, electrical cords and other small objects
  • Ensure the environment is well lit - use night lights or sensor lights if necessary
  • Arrange for your pets to stay with family/friends or board them when you first come home. If this is not possible, plan to keep them out of your way. For example, keep them in a different area of the house or place a bell on their collar to alert you when they are near
  • Place a sturdy chair with arms near a table. Ensure the chair is high enough to get in and out of easily – consider adding cushions if necessary
  • Consider using equipment such as a raised toilet seat or over toilet aid to raise the height of the toilet seat if necessary
  • You may benefit from using a shower seat or bath seat which can be used for showering, drying and dressing as well as grooming at the sink
  • Store commonly used items in the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom at waist level to avoid or minimise bending, reaching or lifting – DO NOT use step stools
  • Ensure you access your support network to help you including family members, friends and church or community groups. If you are worried about assistance with care once you are home, please contact our social work department on (02) 9487 9660 well before coming in to hospital to help you arrange this support
  • If you need help with housekeeping, there are a number of private agencies that are available to assist. Check your local newspaper classifieds, otherwise the rehab team can provide you with a useful list of home help agencies
  • Plan your meals in advance. Some suggestions are to cook and freeze meals or to consider private meal delivery services. Also think about asking friends or relatives to assist with meal preparation
  • Think about shopping. Perhaps check local newspapers for shopping services, as well as using supermarket home delivery services or phone orders.

Tips for a Safe Bathroom after Surgery

Please click here to view a diagram that outlines changes that you can make to your bathroom to ensure that it is a safer environment for you. Items such as over toilet aids, shower chairs or bath seats can be hired for use during your recovery period. For details on companies that provide this service, speak to your occupational therapist or case manager when you visit the hospital for prehabilitation.

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Sydney Adventist Hospital Clinical Specialties and Services