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Pre-operative assessment clinic

Pre-operative assessment clinic specialises in assessing patients' fitness for planned surgery for all patients over the age of 16, having either urology surgery, general surgery or orthopaedic surgery. An assessment is valid for 12 weeks.

When patients are informed at clinic that they need an operation, a basic assessment (Triage) needs to be carried out to ensure that they are fit to go onto the waiting list.

Patients will be asked to complete a health screening questionnaire before coming in to POAC.

Alternatively patients who are already on the waiting list that have not been triaged are given a booked appointment to have an assessment by the waiting list officer approximately a month before their date of surgery.

Waiting to be seen

POAC have several different clinics running throughout the day and patients may not be seen in the order that  they have checked in at reception. POAC does experience busy periods throughout the week and we advise that patients bring something to occupy themselves with. Patients can bring someone with them to the clinic; however, please be aware that our reception area has limited space.

What to bring with you

It would be helpful if patients bought with them glasses and/or hearing aid if worn and any medication that they are regularly taking. This can either be in the original packaging or a repeat prescription.

Assessment stages

Depending upon your individual fitness and the type of surgery you are having, you may go through various assessment stages. 

MRSA testing

All patients will be tested (screened) for MRSA, this will be done at any stage of your assessment. (NB patients that are known to have had MRSA in the past will not be screened but given treatment before their admission).

Most of our patients are cleared for surgery at these appointments; however, some patients will not be cleared for surgery and will either need to return to their General Practitioner (GP) for further treatment (usually treatment for urine infections or treatment for high blood pressure) or refered to another department for further investigation or advice (for example cardiology department).


If patients require transport, this will need to be arranged by the patient or their representative, through the patient's GP. The Trust no longer organises this.

Interpreting service

Patients requiring an interpreter (foreign language or British Sign Language) should ask a representative to contact POAC to request an interpreter for their appointment.

Staff details

Department Manager: Susan Hatch

Clinical Lead: Dr Jennie Rechner

Matron: Erin Jarvis

How to find us

We are located near the entrance South Block at RBH. Park in the multi storey car park in Craven Road. Join the Main Entrance Block at level 2. Turn right past reception, passing the shops (signed All Wards and Departments). At Welcomers desk turn left into the Link Corridor and proceed to the end. Follow signs to Outpatients 2, exiting the hospital through the South Block exit. Preoperative assessment is the second building on the left past the phototherapy suite.

Car Parking

Public parking in the multi-storey car parking is Pay on Exit. Parking for disabled people is free of charge and the disabled bays are clearly marked. Levels 0, 1, 2 and 3 are for the public.

Pay stations can be found on level 0 and level 2.

Level 2 has disabled spaces and leads straight to the reception in the main entrance on Craven Road. It is the best access to the hospital. There are also disabled spaces on Level 0.

South Block car park: There are short stay, disabled and drop off points only in this car park and next to South Block entrance as this car park is primarily for staff.

Drop-off points only are available in the South Block car park, off Addington Road. There are several disabled parking bays outside South Block entrance. Parking on roads around the hospital is very limited and has strict time restrictions – please check as the area is regularly patrolled.

Useful contacts

Pre-operative Assessment Clinic
South Block Annex
Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust
London Road
Reading RG1 5AN

0118 322 6546 / 6812


    Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust,
    London Road,
    RG1 5AN
    Email us
    Tel: 0118 322 5111
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