Planning Your Hospital Stay

Your Visit to Hospital

  • Before leaving from home, please double-check any special instructions regarding food or drink restrictions before your procedure or clothing suggestions that you may have received from your nurse, physician or specialist.
  • Please bring only one other person with you when coming to the Emergency Department, any Ambulatory Care Clinic or day surgery appointment.
  • Please bring your health card.
  • When you arrive, please come first to the Registration office; at the front of the building in SMGH, and through the Emergency entrance at FCHS.

What to bring:

  • Canes, walkers, wheelchairs, hearing aids, dentures, eyeglasses, or any other aid you use. Please label with your name.
  • Dressing gowns, slippers
  • You are responsible for supplying your own toiletries including toothbrush, toothpaste, hand soap, shampoo, tissues, deodorant, shaving kit, comb and brush)
  • Containers for items such as dentures, eyeglasses, contact lenses or hearing aids.
  • Electrical devices, such as razors and hair appliances, blow dryers. (For safety reasons, all electrical devices brought into the hospital must be approved and labeled by our Environmental Services staff before they can be used in your room. To arrange to have your electrical appliances checked, speak to your Communication Clerk.
  • Please do not bring cellular phones or walkie-talkies. (These devices may interfere with the medical equipment).

Discharge Information and Planning

A family member or friend should take you home after a hospital stay. Please make sure that you have after-care instructions, prescriptions, medications, diet and follow-up appointment information.

If you are unsure about anything ask your healthcare provider before you leave. You may require care after your discharge from hospital. The hospital staff will help you decide on the available services that will best meet your needs. The Clinical Leader will provide information about alternative living options and will facilitate the most appropriate placement when returning home is not an option.

Telemedicine Patients

A telemedicine visit uses cameras and video monitors to connect you to doctors and other health professionals over a distance, reducing your need to travel to receive care. When you have a telemedicine appointment, you will be able to see, hear and talk to a doctor or other health professional via two-way video.

  • Please arrive 20 minutes before your appointment to register. This allows you to become familiar with the nursing staff/coordinator, room and equipment
  • Staff will try to see you at your appointment time, but sometimes there may be delays
  • You will be asked to sign a consent form for the telemedicine clinic before the visit begins
  • A Nurse/Telemedicine coordinator will be available for support during the clinic visit
  • The appointment is just like a regular check-up, except the doctor and healthcare team members are on a computer screen
  • Your appointment may take up to one hour
  • The Nurse/Telemedicine coordinator helps the doctor with the check-up during the appointment
  • The physician will determine if there is follow-up care and an appointment will be determined at a later date
  • All patient information is private and confidential
  • For more information on Telemedicine, see the frequently asked questions.

Your Comforts


There is no charge for the telephone or for local calls. For local calls DIAL 9 and then the phone number. For long distance calls, please call collect, use a calling card or use the pay phones. Please do not use cellular phones or walkie-talkies. (These devices may interfere with the medical equipment).


Ask your friends and relatives to send items clearly marked with your full name and room number to either: Strathroy Middlesex General Hospital: 395 Carrie St. Strathroy, ON N7G 3J4 or Four Counties Health Services: R. R. 3, 1824 Concession Dr., Newbury, ON, N0L 1Z0.

Television (SMGH site only)

To arrange for a TV rental or enquire about rates, please call 519-245-1550 ext 5937.

Compliments or Complaints

The Chief Operating Officer works cooperatively with your healthcare team in an effort to enhance your hospital stay and to resolve any problems that may occur while you are in the hospital. To promote effective communication during your stay, we suggest issues be addressed directly with the people involved in your care. If there are certain matters that you think require further attention, please contact us.

Food and Nutrition


The cafeteria is open daily – 7:00 am to 5:00 pm. Cafeteria Lunch Hours (hot food is served) from 11:30 am – 1:30 pm. Vending machine options are available for purchase in the visitor waiting room #519 and also in the cafeteria. Inpatient meal service is provided for all in patients. Breakfast is served between 7:45 and 8:00 am, 11:50 am for lunch and 4:45 pm for dinner.  Patients fill in a Preference Card when admitted. This goes to Food Services to help us customize patient meals, with, for example, requested portion size, beverage preferences, and meat or milk choices.


The cafeteria is open Weekdays 10:30 am – 2:30 p.m. From 11:30 am – 1 pm, hot food is served. Weekends and Statutory Holidays the cafeteria is closed. Vending machines are located in the Cafeteria and in the Emergency Department waiting room. The cafeteria is located in the basement.  Follow the signage once exiting the elevator or stairwell.  Inpatient meal service is provided for all patients starting with breakfast 7:50 am – 8:30 am, lunch 11:35 am – 12:15 p.m. and supper 4:40 p.m. – 5:15 p.m. Patients fill in a Preference Card when admitted. This goes to Food Services to help us customize patient meals, with, for example, requested portion size, beverage preferences, and meat or milk choices. Visitors can order supper from Food Services since the cafeteria is closed at supper. A supper tray will be sent to the visitor with the patient’s tray. Please visit the Food Services office to order a visitor tray.

Gift Shops

Gift shops are located at each site of the Middlesex Hospital Alliance. They are run by our FCHS and SMGH Hospital Auxiliaries with proceeds to support our hospitals. You will be able to find a variety of gift items, snacks and personal care items.

The Four Counties Health Services Gift Shop is open Monday – Friday 9:30-3pm. A Hair Shop is also located in the Adult Day Centre auditorium. Patients or family members can ask nursing staff for an appointment.

The Strathroy Middlesex General Hospital Gift Shop is open Monday – Friday 10:30am-3:30pm and 6:00pm-8:00pm, and on weekends from 1:00-4:00pm. The SMGH Auxiliary also operates the JAVA HUT Coffee Kiosk Monday – Friday 7:30am-7:30pm and on Saturdays 11am-3pm.

Interpreter Services

Patients or family members who need an interpreter to help them communicate with caregivers should ask the staff for help. Many of our staff speak different languages and they will be pleased to assist you. You may also wish to have a family member or friend present when your doctor or specialist visits, to help with communications.

Palliative Care

Palliative Care provides care to meet the diverse physical, psychological, emotional, social, cultural and spiritual needs of individuals with life-threatening illnesses and their families. Families/significant others are welcome to stay with a loved one; cots and chairs are available for your use.

Pastoral Care

On-call local clergy members can be accessed on a 24-hour basis to meet the spiritual needs of both inpatients and outpatients. Your nurse will contact them at your request. And, we would be pleased to assist you in arranging a visit with your own clergyperson. At SMGH, a small chapel for prayer and solitude, is available on the first floor in the main corridor. At FCHS a quite room, for prayer and solitude, is available across from the Computer/Resource Area main corridor.


Please do not leave valuables such as jewelry, credit cards and large sums of money in your room. Send your valuables home, or ask to have them locked up. MHA is not responsible for any personal items that may go missing.

Safe Environments

MHA practices a Safe Environments Policy. This policy protects the safety and is the responsibility of staff, physicians, volunteers, community partners, patients and visitors. It includes:

Fragrance reduced environment

Fragrances can pose a health risk to patients, staff and visitors.  Please do not wear perfume, cologne, or aftershave while in the hospital.  If you can, it is important that you remind your visitors not to wear fragrance or bring flowers with strong scents when they come to see you.  Some people are highly allergic to fragrance and can suffer reactions.


On July 11, 2016, the MHA became a smoke-free environment on all hospital grounds. For more information, click Here


Latex, such as used in balloons or gloves, can cause mild to serious reactions in some individuals. Please do not bring these to the hospital.

Fire Alarms and Exits

Fire exits are clearly marked throughout the building. During a fire alarm, all elevators automatically close until an ALL CLEAR announcement on the speaker system. During a fire alarm remain in your area and do not move through the hospital unless directed by staff or by fire department personnel. You may hear one of our regular fire drills during your hospital visit.

Billing and Costs

Learn more about Hospital fees and charges and how you can conveniently pay your bill online.

Housekeeping / Maintenance

Housekeeping staff is on duty seven days a week. They keep your room, bathroom and all the areas of the hospital clean and in good order.

Maintenance Staff have the important job of keeping the hospital safe and making your stay as comfortable and as pleasant as possible. Please let them know if you have any special requests. They will be pleased to help.

Important Reminder:  Keep windows closed in warm weather to allow the Tempered Air System to operate efficiently. Those who insist on keeping their windows open are requested to keep their doors closed.

Lost & Found

If you have found an article or lost a possession at Strathroy Middlesex General Hospital, please notify the Communication Clerk. The Lost & Found is kept at Patient Registration.

At Four Counties Health Services, the Lost & Found is located in the Physiotherapy room. Please speak with physiotherapy receptionist Jane Adema, 519-693-7111 x.2441.