How To Create an Emergency Checklist Before Your Surgery

Written By Alla Levin
January 30, 2023

How To Create an Emergency Checklist Before Your Surgery

Preparation is vital when it comes to healthcare, and surgery is no exception. Before going through a surgical procedure, it’s important to create an emergency checklist that covers both medical and non-medical items.

An emergency checklist will provide the patient with peace of mind before their surgery, as well as ensure that all preparations are taken care of in advance so that the day of the operation can go smoothly. This article will explore what should be included on a pre-surgery emergency checklist.

Medical Considerations

The first step in creating an effective pre-surgery emergency checklist is to consider any necessary medical instructions or paperwork provided by the doctor’s office. This may include bringing a copy of the patient’s insurance information, any paperwork for pre-surgery tests or screenings that were requested by the doctor, and a list of medications (both prescription and over-the-counter) that the patient is currently taking. Additionally, if there are specific instructions regarding eating or drinking prior to surgery, these should be followed closely. 

Personal NecessitiesHow To Create an Emergency Checklist Before Your Surgery

Beyond medical considerations, patients should also include items in their emergency checklist that will make recovery more comfortable. These items may include loose clothing such as pajamas or sweatshirts; headphones to listen to music during recovery; books, magazines, or other forms of entertainment; snacks and drinks (if allowed); and any necessary toiletries like a toothbrush, hairbrush, and deodorant. 


It’s important to decide ahead of time who will be responsible for transporting the patient both to and from surgery. This should also include making sure that someone will be around after the procedure to bring the patient home safely. If public transportation is being used, it’s essential to call in advance to confirm schedules and ensure that pick-up times are known before surgery day. 

Contact Numbers

Before surgery, it is important to make sure you have all the necessary contact information on hand. This includes your doctor’s office number and any other specialists who may be involved with your care, as well as the hospital or operating center where your procedure will take place. It can also be helpful to have emergency contacts listed in case of an unexpected event during or after the surgery. For example, the number of a medical malpractice attorney in the area should be included in the event of any unfavorable circumstances. 

Financial Arrangements

Depending on the type of insurance, some procedures may require payment at the time of service. Therefore, before surgery day, it is essential to call the doctor’s office and confirm any potential financial obligations that need to be taken care of beforehand. 

Creating a pre-surgery emergency checklist can help alleviate stress and ensure that everything is taken care of before going through a medical procedure. The items listed on this checklist are all necessary steps in preparing for a successful operation. Keep in mind that it is also beneficial to consult with your doctor prior to surgery so they can address any questions or concerns you might have. 

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