Your hospital admission

Please look at the information below which will help you during your hospital admission.

If, however you have any questions about your care, your treatment or anything connected to your stay in hospital, please speak to a member of staff, who will be pleased to help.


Our members of staff wear lanyards with ID cards showing their name and job title; if you do not know who is talking to you please ask them to introduce themselves and if necessary, ask them to show you their identification.

Our staff wear the following uniforms in wards/units:

  • Senior nurses wear black pinstripe
  • The Matron who is responsible for leading the team and for the quality of care, wears a purple uniform.
  • Ward/department sisters wear navy blue uniforms
  • Registered nurses (staff nurses) wear light blue uniforms
  • Health care assistants wear green uniforms
  • Student nurse’s wear white tunics and blue trousers
  • Ward/Clinic Clerks depending on their area may wear a uniform
  • Housekeepers wear royal blue uniform

You may also see doctors and their teams and members of various therapy teams as and when required. You will be informed of the named consultant who is looking offer you.

Our hospitals are also teaching hospitals and it is likely that on some occasions you will be asked if you mind if medical students and other health professionals are present during your treatment or examination. If you are not happy about this, please tell us.

You will have a small locker next to your bed/chair for your personal possessions. However, storage space is limited. You should, where possible, bring with you or have brought in for you:

  • Prescribed tablets and medication that you usually take at home. Please give any prescribed tablets and medicines to a nurse. The doctor will prescribe all the tablets and medicines that you need while you are in hospital and for when you return home. If you have a card giving details of any current treatment particularly a steroid card or Warfarin booklet, please bring this with you and inform one of the nurses.
  • Bed jackets/cardigan or dressing gown. Nightdress or pyjamas.
  • Correctly fitting slippers or shoes (to avoid slips or falls during your stay in hospital). Further information about reducing the risk of falling whilst in hospital is available; please discuss this with your nurse
  • Toiletries (including hair brush or comb, soap or (soap substitute), toothbrush, toothpaste or denture cleaner and shaving equipment.
  • Loose or comfortable day clothes.
  • Some money for the television and phone system by your bedside.
  • Your most recently prescribed spectacles, contact lenses (including cleaning fluid), hearing aid and denture box.
  • Any addresses or telephone numbers that you might need.

We advise that the following items should not be brought in with you while in hospital:

  • Large amounts of money or valuables i.e. jewellery, laptops etc.
  • Alcohol, any illegal or non-prescription drugs.
  • Large amounts of perishable foods

You are recommended to ask a relative to take home any money or valuables or to hand them over for safe keeping during your stay in hospital.

We will ask you to sign a property and valuables disclaimer on your admission as part of the admission documentation process. The East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust and its staff are unable to accept any liability for loss, theft or damage to patients personal property or money unless it has been handed in for safe custody and an official receipt obtained.

On arrival to the ward you will be shown the bathroom and toilet facilities. You will be shown your allocated bed space area and given a call bell to contact staff as required. Above your bed will be a board stating your name, allocated consultant and named nurse. This will also include any special instructions personal to you.

As part of a national initiative the nursing team on wards or departments are offering two hourly rounds for essential care that patients might need. We do this to ensure a personalised approach to your care. The nurses will speak with you regularly to address any worries or concerns you may have, however please discuss any concerns you have with a nurse at anytime.

We will ensure that we obtain your informed consent before any procedure, intervention or nursing care. The nursing team will ask you on an ongoing basis for your permission to give you care. For some procedures or interventions you may be required to sign a consent form. The nursing or medical staff will explain all the necessary details before asking you to sign a consent form. Please ensure that you are happy with the information before giving consent.

Although you may have consented for treatment, you may at any time withdraw your consent. Please discuss this with your medical team.

If you have any documents expressing your health wishes please ensure you make a member of the ward/unit team aware. This is very important as this information will be used when making decisions about you and your care if you were unable to provide consent yourself.

We aim to accommodate all patients in same sex sleeping areas. This may not apply to certain areas where you may be coming in for day surgery or minor procedures or areas that require specialised care for example the cardiac unit and intensive care unit.

There may be occasions when the only bed available is in a mixed sex area, but every effort will be made to find an appropriate bed in a single sex area as soon as possible dependent on your clinical requirements.

It may be necessary for you to be moved to different bed areas in the same ward or to different wards. This may happen at varying times of the day or night, (moving patients at night is only done if an emergency situation arises).

We look at the needs of all patients when making these decisions and this will be discussed with you and explained to you prior to any moves. Where a patient experiences disorientation we will aim to keep moves to a minimum.

Each ward/unit area supports protected mealtimes. We use this opportunity to help patients who may need assistance with eating and drinking and to maintain privacy and dignity. We appreciate your support in asking your friends and relatives to only visit during visiting times.

We understand that some family members may wish to visit to help you, if needed. Please speak to the nurse in charge of your care or area. If you have any religious preferences please speak to the nursing staff and they will assist you.

We do not expect our staff to be exposed to unacceptable behaviour such as verbal, or physical abuse on any grounds including ethnicity or gender.

Should there be an incident where a patient or visitor behaviour becomes unacceptable or causes harm, the trust will, where appropriate, support staff and pursue any necessary action which may lead to a conviction.

Your plan for discharge will start on your admission to hospital. We will involve yourself, your family, carers or friends with your consent, as appropriate. On the day of your discharge any medicines you will need will be prescribed by the doctor and supplied by the hospital pharmacy or dispensed by the ward/unit area. However, if your medication has not been changed and you have a supply at home please inform the nurses as this may speed up the discharge process for you and allow you to be discharged earlier. If your medication is not in stock then you may be issued with a prescription to obtain from a Pharmacist.

On the day of your discharge, you may be transferred to a discharge lounge to wait for your transport home or for your medication. The discharge lounge is staffed by nursing staff who can care for all your needs whilst you are there.

Our hospitals are smoke free. This means that smoking is prohibited in all our hospitals and other buildings and grounds. If you need assistance to stop smoking please speak to a member of staff who can refer you to the appropriate service.

There are a number of services available for patients while in hospital. They include:

Trolley services

Regular trolley services, with a selection of newspapers, magazines and confectionery is available on most wards.

Television, telephone and radio services

In most wards there is a bedside television, radio and telephone system called ‘Hospedia’. To use this service you will need to buy cards to operate this system and there are vending machines outside most wards. This system gives you access to many television and radio stations and a dedicated telephone number. Your friends and relatives will be able to call you directly on this system (charges apply).

Hospedia is a private company which provides this service and they set the charges, including the cost of incoming and outgoing calls. If you decide not use the Hospedia system, payphones are available throughout the hospital and televisions can be found in many ward day rooms.

Hospital Radio

The hospital radio services provide a variety of programmes, available free of charge. There are also daily request shows. For more information click here>>

Chaplaincy, religion and spiritual care

This is delivered by the Chaplaincy Team which forms an integral part of the trust’s commitment to the all-round care of patients and their families. For more information visit – Chaplaincy, religion and spiritual care