COVID-19 info: Surgeries are being scheduled at our surgery centers. We are taking precautions to keep your family safe. Learn more about what to expect for surgery »
Getting ready for surgery
To help you and your family prepare for surgery, we’ve compiled Children’s Minnesota resources specific to parents, teens and kids.
Planning for surgery checklist
About the checklist
We are here to help you and your family prepare for surgery. Planning for surgery reduces stress and anxiety for everyone.
Use this planning for surgery checklist to manage all the details leading up to surgery. Pay special attention to these items marked with a exclamation mark icon in the checklist. You must do these things or your surgery could be canceled or delayed:
Scroll links to required checklist items
Print or view the checklist
Print the checklist
Checklist (click header links to expand the corresponding time period)
Call your primary care clinic to schedule a pre-surgery exam within 30 days before surgery.
Your child must have the exam within 30 days before surgery. Ask your primary care provider to fax the completed Medical History and Physical Exam Form (PDF file) to your Children’s Minnesota surgery center:
Also ask your primary care provider to give you a copy of the completed Medical and Physical Exam Form and bring it with you on the day of surgery.
Get documentation of legal guardianship (if applicable).
Documentation of legal guardianship may be required if the patient is in foster care, county custody or adopted. The child’s legal guardian must be present on the day of surgery to sign the consent form.
Only the patient’s legal guardian(s) may be entered in the patient’s medical record.
The guardian is legally responsible for the patient and may make decisions regarding their medical treatment and care.
If you have questions, please call one of our social workers Monday-Friday, 8 a.m to 4:30 p.m.:
Plan for time away from work.
Plan childcare for the patient’s siblings.
Plan for care of the family pets.
Call your insurance company.
Ask your insurance company about cost, and if you need prior authorization for the surgery procedure. If you have questions about financial assistance, call Children’s Minnesota financial counseling at:
(The Children’s Minnesota Surgery and Specialty Center – Minnetonka does not have financial counseling on-site, but you can call the Children’s Minnesota Minneapolis or St. Paul hospital phone numbers listed above to speak with a financial counselor.)
Get labs or additional medical testing if required by surgeon.
Plan to pick up your child’s medications after surgery.
Both Children’s Minnesota Minneapolis and St. Paul hospitals have a pharmacy, so you can save yourself a trip to a different location. The Children’s Minnesota Surgery and Specialty Center in Minnetonka does not have a pharmacy.
Arrange for transportation to and from the Children’s Minnesota surgery center.
Arrange for an adult caregiver for your child while they are recovering after surgery at home, if you can’t be there yourself.
Notify your child’s school or daycare provider of their planned absence.
Ask the school if there are any forms you will need to turn in when your child returns to school.
Plan to have your child’s favorite beverages at home.
Drinking plenty of fluids is important after surgery.
Confirm care for the family pets.
Confirm childcare for the patient’s siblings.
If your child is sick the day before surgery, call your surgeon’s office.
Know your arrival time for surgery.
A nurse will confirm your arrival time during the nurse phone call before surgery. Please check any phone messages you get from the surgery center. Plan to arrive early to allow time for parking and check-in.
Plan to stay in the surgery center during surgery so you are available for updates and questions from the care team.
Confirm transportation to and from the Children’s Minnesota surgery center.
Clean out the car seats.
Make sure there are no food items in the car that your child could eat.
Wash your child’s comfort items (blankets, toys, etc.).
Remove your child’s nail polish, jewelry, piercings, braids, beads and ponytails.
Give your child a bath or shower and wash their hair before bedtime.
Put clean sheets and pillowcases on your child’s bed and pillows before bedtime.
The child’s legal guardian must be present on the day of surgery to sign the consent form.
Bring all required documentation:
- Copy of Medical History and Physical Exam Form (PDF file)
- Insurance cards
- Guardianship papers (if applicable), as the child’s legal guardian must be present on the day of surgery to sign the consent form
- List of medications your child is taking (It helps to bring the medications with you.)
Bring any home medical equipment your child needs (such as a BiPap, ventilator, etc.)
COVID-19 safety at Children’s Minnesota
Learn how we’re changing health care to keep your family safe.