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The Surgical Short Stay Unit

The SSSU is designed for patients undergoing selected procedures who will require an overnight stay at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

This brochure will provide you and your caregiver with additional information to help you prepare for your surgery and your stay in the SSSU.

Please refer to the booklet entitled “My Surgical Journey”, given to you in the Pre-Admission Clinic. It is helpful if you bring the booklet with you on the day of your surgery.

The Day Before Surgery

It is important that you are confirmed to attend your surgery. The last business day before your scheduled surgery, a Patient Administrative Assistant will contact you between 1:00pm and 3:00pm. You will be told what time to arrive at the hospital, and the approximate time of your surgery.

At this time, you will be reminded that you MUST have a responsible adult to drive you home. If not, your admission may be postponed until an escort home can be arranged.

Please be aware although your surgery is scheduled, surgical times are guidelines only. Delays are often expected. Sometimes, scheduled surgery cases are cancelled because there is someone else who needs emergency surgery, or there is no post-operative bed available. If this happens to you, you will be contacted by your surgeon's office and rescheduled as soon as possible.

The Day of Surgery

On the day of surgery go to the Surgical Services Registration area, room MG502.

Please arrive on time and bring your identification with you.

Your Recovery in the SSSU

The Surgical Short Stay Unit is an open ward concept unit, with both male and female patients. There are no private rooms available. 

There is a plan of care developed for your procedure. The hospital team will use this plan to manage your post-operative care and prepare you for your discharge.

The nurses are specialized to take care of post-operative patients. They will follow the doctor’s orders, continue to assess your progress and ensure that you receive the care required in order to safely discharge you from the hospital.


Patients discharge is planned for the morning following the surgical date.

Discharge time is 07:30 am.

For patients being discharged home:

Please ensure that you have arranged for a responsible adult to drive you home.

Your nurse will give you instructions to help you with your continued recovery at home.

If you do not meet the discharge criteria, your nurse and physician team will arrange for you to continue your surgical recovery at the hospital.

Patients being transferred to the Holland Campus for continued care

Some patients who have had back surgery will spend the first night after their operation in the SSSU. The next day, they will be transferred by ambulance to the Holland Centre as part of their recovery plan of care. This will be discussed with you and your surgeon prior to your surgery.

After Discharge

If you have concerns regarding your surgical procedure after your discharge, please contact your surgeon’s office directly or follow-up with your family doctor.