Tips for your hospital stay

During your stay at UPMC, we want to provide you the best care possible. You and your loved ones can help us ensure you recover quickly by following these simple safety tips.

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Follow These 8 Safety Tips During Your Hospital Stay

1. Wear a facemask.

Masks have been required in all UPMC hospitals and medical office buildings since the COVID-19 pandemic and we continue this practice. All patients, visitors, and staff at every UPMC facility must wear a facemask that covers their nose and mouth, even if they are fully vaccinated and boosted.

If you are unable to wear a mask for medical reason(s), please talk with a staff member for reasonable accommodations.

2. Wash your hands.

Clean hands help lower the risk of infection. Your visitors and the people who care for you at home should also frequently wash their hands. Handwashing is a key way to prevent the transmission of many illnesses. Make it a must-do practice every time before you eat and after using the bathroom or touching objects in high-traffic areas.

3. Speak up if you’re in pain.

Let someone know if you are in pain or if you are having side effects from your pain medicine. Pay attention to how you feel and tell us about your symptoms.

4. Protect your skin.

Change your position in bed often and move around safely as much as you can to prevent bed sores. Check your skin every day and try to keep it clean and dry.

5. Take care not to fall.

Call a nurse before getting out of bed if you feel unstable. Stand up slowly. Wear non-skid socks, slippers, or shoes that won’t slip. Clear a safe path so you have plenty of room to move around. Walk slowly and deliberately, using support of the wall or handles, if needed.

6. Take your medication.

It is important to take your medicine exactly as your doctor prescribes it. It’s best to take your medicine right away when it is delivered to you. If you have any questions about your medicine or side effects, please ask your doctor.

7. Get up and moving.

Ask your nurse how soon you can safely get out of bed. Move your legs and rotate your feet at the ankles while lying down. Ask your doctor about compression devices or leg pumps to wear while in bed or sitting down to help blood flow in your legs and feet.

8. Don’t smoke.

Of course, there is no smoking inside the hospital or on the hospital grounds. If you do smoke, talk to your doctor about quitting. Patients who don’t smoke often recover more quickly.

Ensuring Safety

You are an important part of your own health care team, and we trust that you know your body better than anyone else. Always ask your care team if you are unsure or need something explained. If you are worried about a symptom or side effect, please let us know.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on , and was last reviewed on .

About UPMC

Headquartered in Pittsburgh, UPMC is a world-renowned health care provider and insurer. We operate 40 hospitals and 800 doctors’ offices and outpatient centers, with locations throughout Pennsylvania, Maryland, New York, West Virginia, and internationally. We employ 4,900 physicians, and we are leaders in clinical care, groundbreaking research, and treatment breakthroughs. U.S. News & World Report consistently ranks UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside as one of the nation’s best hospitals in many specialties and ranks UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh on its Honor Roll of America’s Best Children’s Hospitals. We are dedicated to providing Life Changing Medicine to our communities.