Patient Information

Useful information to have when being admitted as a planned admission includes the following:

  • Health Insurance details, including the level of cover for those with private health insurance
  • Pension details and/or health care cards
  • Name and contact details for next of kin or other contact.

Please note that Central Gippsland Health can bill your fund direct for the bed fee. Ask for details when admitted.

A pressure injury (bed sore) can affect even healthy younger patients.

Remaining still and in one place for too long can cause pressure to areas such as your heels and buttocks. Play the ‘Bed Callisthenics’ game! There is a set of bed based exercises that your nurse or physiotherapist can show you which will help reduce the pressure.

Get up and move around as quickly as possible, if it is recommended, after your surgery. This will also assist the prevention of blood clots.

For those patients who are going to be in bed for a while, we have special wedge pillows for your heels. Ask your nurse for those, even if you are on a trolley in the Emergency Department or going to X-ray.

Make sure you know what pressure-relieving devices are going to be used in theatre.

Effective complaints management is fundamental to the provision of quality health care services. As part of a quality and risk obligation, Central Gippsland Health is committed to manage complaints in a timely and appropriate manner, review its complaint data, identify systemic and recurring problems and to develop strategies to improve clinical practice and the delivery of health care services across the organisation.

A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction or concerns about a health care service made by consumers, their carers or others. All complaints and concerns are included whether they are formal written complaints, a concern expressed during discussion with a health professional or views expressed as part of a consumer feedback survey

Informal Complaints are verbal expressions of dissatisfaction which can be dealt with promptly and to the complainant’s satisfaction at the point of service.

Formal Complaints include all written complaints and any verbal complaints which cannot be dealt with as informal complaints.

Consumers may express their concerns, compliments or complaints in a number of ways:

  • Talk with the relevant staff at a Unit/Program/Department level
  • Complete a Complaints Registration Form
  • Write a letter of complaint to the health service
  • Contact the Aged Care Complaints Resolution Scheme
  • Contact the Health Services Ombudsman Victoria

Privacy Complaints can be made by contacting the Contact CGH Privacy Officer 51438640, contacting the Office of the Health Services Commissioner 1800 13 60 66, or the Privacy Commissioner 1300 666 444.

Any health service consumer may lodge a complaint. A relative, friend or other person may lodge a complaint provided that, where possible, they have the service user’s permission.

Central Gippsland Health also welcomes any compliments to staff or the service generally as these are rewarding to individuals and the whole of the staff and management group, while also assisting in continuous improvement activities.

Talk to your doctor and pharmacist. Ask questions and write down what they say.

There is a Shared Care Plan booklet available which can help you keep track of medicines, appointments and other important information. You can get equipment for the home if you need it.

Contact the Occupational Therapy department before you go home or ask one of the nursing staff to assist.

Keep a telephone near your bed at home in case you need help.

Never smoke in bed.

Look for things in your home that might affect you walking safely about your home: do not use extension cords, be careful with mats and rugs especially on polished floors and shift light furniture clear of pathways to the bathroom.

There is some other information available. Ask staff in your ward or treatment area.

At admission or pre-admission, nursing staff will discuss discharge needs.

Generally discharge time is between 10 am and 11 am. Where possible you will be given ample notice of discharge and it is preferable that patients are accompanied home by a relative or friend.

There is a discharge co-ordinator available to support patients and their families with any discharge needs. The co-ordinator visits patients in hospital to help plan discharge and link patients, before they leave hospital, with appropriate support services if required.

The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act provides you with a right to request access to documents held by our organisation. It is possible to obtain copies of information, view information or request an amendment to information that is incomplete, incorrect, out of date or misleading.

You can also request access to medical information of another person, with their consent.

Before you make a request for access

You are encouraged to check if the information or document you are seeking is already publicly available such as in our annual report, policies and procedures, resources, or via our website.

Where you cannot find the information or document you are seeking, we encourage you to contact us on (03) 5143 8552 and ask if the information or document you are seeking is available or can be provided to you.

Making a request for access

A request needs to be made in writing, this can be either be brought to our reception or sent in by email or in a letter. The request needs to clearly describe the information or document you are seeking access to. An FOI application form is available here or from our Medical Record Department.

You can make a request for access by either:

  • Emailing:
  • Sending a letter to: The Freedom of Information Officer Central Gippsland Health 155 Guthridge Parade SALE VIC 3850
  • Bringing your letter or FOI application form to our reception

If we cannot clearly identify the information or documents you are requesting, we will contact you to clarify your request.

Processing your request

Please note that there is an application fee when you request information through the FOI Act. The application is not valid until the application fee is paid (or waived). The application fee will be waived if you can provide evidence that you receive social security benefits e.g. a current health benefits or social security benefits card.

Once we understand what information or document you are seeking, we will process your request and provide you with a decision as soon as possible but no later than 30 days after the date of your request. We may extend the 30-day period by up to an additional 15 days if consultation with third parties is required.

We assess each FOI request according to the requirements of the FOI Act. You will be notified if there are any documents that are exempt and reference to the section of the FOI Act will be provided.

Ask your nurse or pharmacist about your medicines – what they are, what they look like, what they do, when they are to be taken and what side effects they may have. If you do not recognise a medicine, check that it is for you before taking it. Let your doctor or nurse know if you have any allergies or sensitivities to any medicines, foods or rubber products. Tell your doctor or nurse about all medicines you are taking including vitamins, herbal remedies and any other over the counter medicines.

Do not take medicines that you brought from home unless you are told to do so by your doctor or nurse.

Ask your doctor and nurse about your plan of care. Make sure that you understand and agree with that plan.Ask a family friend or relative to listen with you when treatment, care plans, test results and discharge plans are explained to you. This will help you remember things later on.

Be informed about your treatment. Ask when treatment will be given and what they are for. If you don’t understand a treatment, have someone explain it again.If equipment is used for your care, have someone explain it to you first, show you how it works and how it should sound if there are alarms.

Question anything that seems different from what you were told.

Hand washing is the best way to prevent the spread of germs. Practice good personal hygiene and let a nurse know if your linen or gown needs to be changed. Staff will welcome a reminder to wash their hands or wear gloves before they carry out treatment. Ask friends or relatives who have colds or other contagious illnesses not to visit you in hospital.

Get vaccinated, if it is recommended. ‘Flu and pneumonia vaccines can help prevent illnesses in older people and those who have low immunity.

Ask for help if you want to get out of bed especially at night. The hospital is an unfamiliar place and most falls happen when patients try to get out of bed on their own to go to the bathroom.

Make sure that your call bell on your bed works and you know how to use it. Let your nurse know if you can’t reach it or can’t use it. Call for help before the need to go to the bathroom gets really urgent. Make sure that the light is on, at night, if you want to use the bathroom or move around your room.

Keep your glasses within reach. Make sure that any furniture or equipment is moved out of the path to the door. Wear slippers with rubber soles to prevent slipping. Tell staff if there are any fluid spills or obstructions that might trip you. Make sure that the brakes are locked on your bed and any chairs, including shower chairs and wheel chairs before you get into them. Make sure children are supervised in play areas and around raised equipment like cots.

When you come into hospital, you will have an identification band on your wrist. You need to wear it at all times. If it comes off, you need to ask for a new one.

Check the information on your armband to make sure that your name and other important information is correct. Make sure that all staff check your armband before any procedure or test.

Eligible (including Reciprocal Health Care) and Ineligible Patient Fees

Fees for ineligible patients (patients not covered by Medicare including overseas patients), are set to achieve full cost recovery. Some overseas patient are entitled to financial assistance according to Reciprocal Health Care Agreements.

Ineligible Admitted Patient Fees

Patient Classification Accommodation Fee Rates for 2019-20
Medical same day* $1,000 per day
Medical overnight / Rehabilitation per day* $1,250 per day
Obstetrics Vaginal/Caesarean – total fee $4,000 / $11,000
Surgical – total fee (Contact CFO and HIM urgently) DRG weight x $5,295
Hospital in the Home per day* $750 per day
Prosthesis $ cost recovery

* The following items will be separately charged to the fee listed above:

  • Medical Imaging

Ineligible Emergency Department Fees

Patients who are ineligible for Medicare who are attended to in Emergency only will be charged a fee of $600 per attendance.

(Note: This is inclusive of the facility fee but excludes diagnostics which should be charged separately)

Ineligible Outpatient Fees

Outpatient Service Fee
Allied Health $100 per hour
Antenatal care $100 per hour
Postnatal care $100 per hour
Home Nursing Care $100 per hour

Pay close attention to where you place your dentures, hearing aids, eye glasses and other personal items (if you have them). These are very important to your comfort and well-being.

Small amounts of cash are advised if you wish to purchase newspapers and other items from the kiosk. Never keep large sums of money in your bedside locker.

Central Gippsland Health, Sale Hospital is primarily a public hospital, open to all people throughout the local catchment area.

However there is an opportunity for patients to choose, if they wish, to come in as a privately insured patient. Being a private patient can benefit your local hospital, as it lowers the costs to the health service.

The benefits you can gain include priority when put on the waiting list for elective procedures and the ability to choose your own doctor. Private patients have first priority on private rooms, but only after clinical considerations are taken into account. Please note, it is important to check your level of cover prior to admission.

The Pre-admission clinic is run to facilitate day of surgery admissions. It is an opportunity to discuss your needs and plan admission before you attend hospital.

Nursing and medical assessment is conducted with documentation completed at the pre-admission clinic. Patient education is provided regarding the surgery to be performed. Contact the pre-admission clinic on 5143 8145 for details.

Make sure that you understand discharge instructions including your medicines and any information about follow-up appointments with your doctor. Ask for a telephone number for the ward in case you have questions when you get home. You also need to be aware of the right time to seek medical treatment if you have any concerns about your health.

In some cases, you will be called by one of the nursing staff when you go home to ensure that things are going according to plan. They will discuss with you the best time to call before you leave the ward.

Central Gippsland Health is a leader in health promotion and acute and community care premises are totally smoke free, with smoking not permitted in buildings or on the grounds.

Nicotine replacement therapy is provided for patients while in hospital and staff are supported as required.

Aged care facilities, which are the homes for a range of individuals, will continue to have designated smoking areas made available.

Sale: Visiting hours for the general wards are from 9am until 12.30pm, and from 2.30pm until 8pm. Rest time is between 12.30 pm and 2.30 pm.

Obstetrics visiting hours are during the afternoon, although partners are allowed in throughout the day.

Maffra: Visiting hours are from 9am until 12.30pm, and from 2.30pm until 8pm. Rest time is between 12.30 pm and 2.30 pm.

Heyfield: Visiting hours are generally from 9am until 7pm. Arrangements outside these hours can be negotiated.

Central Gippsland Health is committed to ensuring your safety while you are in our organisation.

We know that if patients are involved in their care whilst in hospital, they tend to do better and stay safer. By working together as part of the health care team, you can lower your risk of injury and make your stay in hospital as safe as possible.

The following may assist you to make your stay a safe and comfortable experience:

  • Ask questions
  • If you need an interpreter when English is not your primary language, please get one of your relatives to let a staff member know.
  • If you are deaf or hearing impaired, please let staff know.
  • If you think of something when your doctor or nurse is not with you, write it down so that you can ask them later.

Your safety and comfort is important to us and at CGH we will assess your mobility and transfer needs as part of our safe patient handling (Smart Lift) program. Wherever possible, the maintenance of your mobility independence will be encouraged by our nursing and midwifery staff. Where assistance with mobility and transfers is identified, our trained staff will provide safe patient transfer techniques and appropriate equipment to prevent injuries during patient handling.

Dedicated safety champions or “Smart Lift representatives” in each unit ensure their colleagues follow safe patient handling policies and procedures and are available to discuss your specific patient handling needs.


Visiting hours are from 10am – 12pm and 2pm – 7pm.

We ask that, where possible, there are not more than two visitors per patient at one time. This is in consideration of other patients, and to allow adequate space for staff to provide patient care.

Visitors that are exempt from visiting hours include:

• Birthing women or patients in maternity care – one partner or support person can remain for an unlimited time
• For children under 18 years, two parents/guardians can remain for an unlimited time. One Parent/guardian can stay overnight; and
• Patients at end of life have no limit to the number of visitors per day, or how long they can stay

All visitors:

– Must be free of COVID-19 symptoms (other than symptoms caused by health condition or medication)
– Must be 7 days post testing positive for COVID and be symptom free
– Must be well with no respiratory or gastro symptoms.

Visitors may be required to wear face masks during periods of high community transmission or during COVID outbreaks in ward areas or residential care facilities. Children under 12 years old are exempt from wearing a mask as are those with a medical exemption.

Hand hygiene:

Visitors shall perform hand hygiene on entry and exit to the health service / aged care facility and to individual wards or rooms.

Visiting COVID positive patients or suspected COVID positive patients:

If the patient is suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19, appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) must be used by visitors with staff to facilitate safe donning/doffing.


There are no specific visiting hours for our aged care facilities.

All visitors should:

– Be well and free of respiratory illness
– Strongly encouraged to take a rapid antigen test before entry
– Encouraged to wear a mask during their visit
– Not visit if COVID positive, for at least 7 days and be symptom free

Visitors may be exempt from entry requirements if they:

– are a person visiting for the purpose of an end-of-life visit
– are a person providing urgent support for a resident’s immediate physical, cognitive or emotional wellbeing, where it is not practicable for the person to take a COVID-19 rapid antigen test prior to entering the care facility


We would like to hear your feedback through the community portal.