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Pre-assessment Service

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Welcome to the Royal Hospital for Children Pre-assessment Service

We are a team of professionals who ensure you are fit for a procedure under
anaesthetic. We help to alleviate any worries and support you making the best
decisions about your hospital journey


If your child is going for surgery or needs a general anaesthetic for a procedure, then the pre-assessment team is here to help you.

We will discuss your child’s medical and family history, give you lots of information about coming in to hospital and answer any questions you may have.

We can also make referrals to other departments such as play specialists and the Teddy Bear Hospital to prepare your child for admission and help relieve their anxieties.


We are situated in Clinic 12 on the ground floor of the Royal Hospital for Children and can be contacted on 0141 452 4340.

What is pre-assessment

Pre-assessment is a service that helps to make sure you are well enough for your procedure.

We can help prepare you for your hospital journey and decide if there is anything you might need in advance of your procedure.

We can also answer questions and talk about things that might make your stay more comfortable.

Once it has been decided that you need a procedure, you may be referred to our pre-assessment service. We will contact you with details of an appointment; this could be face to face or by phone depending on your needs and where you live. Either way you will speak to a highly trained nurse and/or
a doctor.

Why is pre-assessment important

The aim of the assessment is to ensure that children/young people and their carers are prepared for the procedure or operation from both a clinical and a psychological perspective.

Attending your pre-assessment appointment may help reduce the risk of your procedure being cancelled; either through ill health, you’re too worried on the day or you’ve overlooked an important instruction

What happens at pre-assessment

Your appointment will either be in person or by telephone depending on your needs. During your appointment you will be seen by or talk to a highly trained nurse and/or a doctor. You may also meet other members of our team.

We will complete a clinical assessment, asking about your health. You might be able to help answer the questions or you might like to play with the toys in our room. We will want to know about any medicines you are taking, if you’ve
been in hospital before, if any of your family have any health conditions or have had an anaesthetic and how you feel about coming into hospital. For really small people, your red book can help us a lot.

We may measure you and find out how much you weigh. Sometimes we take your temperature, listen to your chest and look in your mouth too.
You and the person who brings you to the appointment can ask questions and we will give you information about your anaesthetic and instructions for the day of your procedure.

Lastly we may have to send you to see another member of our team in a different part of the hospital to get further tests.

Having an anaesthetic

An anaesthetic is a special kind of extra deep sleep, during which you can have your procedure whilst you are still and comfortable. You will wake up once your procedure is finished.

The anaesthetic is given by a very experienced doctor called an Anaesthetist. It is their job to look after you whilst you are anaesthetised, keep you safe and stay with you until you wake up.

An anaesthetic is a type of medicine. It can be given into a small tube in your hand or arm (a cannula) or sometimes through a mask or tube attached to a
balloon that you breathe through.

You can discuss what option you may prefer at the pre-assessment appointment. Sometimes there are reasons why one type of anaesthetic is better than another, which will be discussed with you by your anaesthetic doctor.

How do I prepare?

We want you to be comfortable during your time in hospital. You’re welcome to bring small activities to keep you busy such as; books, iPad or playing cards
alongside your favourite teddy or other comforter. You can also bring your favourite snack for after your procedure.

Loose comfortable clothing is best. Pyjamas with top and bottom are preferable, no onesies. Slippers are good to keep your feet warm and stop the
risk of you slipping. It can be cool in some area of the hospital, so bring a dressing gown or zipped top too.

We always suggest you bring a small overnight bag with fresh clothes and toiletries.

A bath or a shower the night before or morning of your procedure helps to minimise any risk of infection.

Please avoid wearing makeup when you come in for your procedure. Lipstick can make it hard for anaesthetist to know your natural lip colour which is important to help keep you safe during anaesthetic. Mascara can make your eyes sore and false eyelashes could be damaged. Whilst you are asleep the anaesthetist also uses different monitors to help keep you safe. Foundations and lotions can stop these monitors sticking to your skin. All nail polish and gel nails needs to be removed too. This is again to help our monitors work.

Piercings and jewellery should also be removed for safety reasons.

It can be helpful to make sure you have some Paracetamol (Calpol) and Ibuprofen at home. Please let us know if you don’t and we can help get this for

Teddy Bear Hospital

The Teddy Hospital provides a safe environment for children and young people to learn about their procedure and anaesthetic. They can see some of the equipment they may see whilst in hospital.

Any child or young person who has any anxieties or additional support needs experience can receive support and preparation from the service.

Please see link below or contact 0141 452 4009

Teddy Hospital


I’m a bit worried- things to support your child or young person

Coming into hospital can be a worrying time for all those involved. At your pre-assessment appointment you will be able to ask lots of questions.

In the meantime there are some useful resources listed below:

General information

Royal college of Anaesthetists

For younger children

Going to the hospital ( Usborne First Experiences) by Anna Civardi
Peppa Pig: Peppa Goes to Hospital: My First Storybook
Topsy and Tim: Go to Hospital by Jean Adamson

For 4-12year olds

A Little Deep Sleep

Dennis has an anaesthetic- for children over 7 years
Dennis has an anaesthetic | The Royal College of Anaesthetists

For over 12s
Royal Collage of Anaesthetists

Further info

Anaesthetic risk

Child-Infographics_2022.pdf ( 

Behaviour changes

Coming soon. 

Pregnancy Testing

All young people over the age of 12 will be asked lifestyle questions. This will be done privately and without a parent or guardian. Pregnancy testing will be routine regardless of disclosure of sexual activity.

Please tell any of your nurses or doctors if you are pregnant or think that you might be.


Virtual tour

Coming soon

Pain service

We have a dedicated pain team who are there to support your journey by helping keep you comfortable. They are a team of highly trained nurses who are also supported by an anaesthetist.

Meet our artist
Editorial Information

Last reviewed: 15 September 2021

Next review: 25 October 2022

Author(s): Stephanie Mobbs

Approved By: RHC Pre-assessment service