What patients should and must not bring to hospital

There is a one bag limit for patients being admitted to public hospitals in South Australia. Please ensure your packed bag weighs less than eight kilograms and is no larger than an overnight sized bag. There is limited space available for baggage at our hospitals and luggage that exceeds the size and weight guidelines may not be able to be stored.

Exceptions may be made for people without family or carers and for those from rural and remote locations, if agreed in advance with your hospital. Please speak with your hospital staff before you arrive for admission to check whether a luggage limit exception can be made for you.

Although all care is taken, SA Health cannot accept responsibility for the personal belongings of patients.

What patients should bring

Please bring only what you need with you, such as:

  • A credit or debit card for bedside computer entertainment packages
  • Medicare care, health benefit fund details, Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) cards and other concession cards
  • Medicines, including complementary or alternative medicines that you are taking in their original packaging (along with dosages and times)
  • Name and contact details of your next of kin, carer or substitute decision maker
  • Name and contact details of your general practitioner (local doctor)
  • Nightwear and a dressing gown or robe
  • One change of clothes 
  • One pair of non-slip footwear
  • Relevant scans, x-rays, pathology results and doctor’s letters
  • Required aids, such as glasses, hearing aids, wheelchairs and walking frames. Be sure to include batteries and cases if appropriate
  • Small amounts of cash, if required
  • Toiletries – toothbrush and paste, soap, comb, shaving gear

Remember, you will need to leave room in your bag for the clothes you wear to hospital. Please ensure you label personal items, including personal wheelchairs and walking frames, with your name, address and a contact telephone number.

If your child is the patient, think about bringing their Child and Youth Health Book and a favourite toy or security blanket.

If you have questions about what you can bring with you, please speak with staff at your local hospital.

What patients must not bring

  • Bedding, electric blankets, wheat bags, hot water bottles or heat packs of any kind
  • Heavy or bulky items
  • Large quantities of food or drinks
  • Pets, excluding service or assistance animals specifically trained to help people with visual or hearing impairments
  • Plug-in electronic equipment, including televisions. Small personal electrical appliances may be used in the hospital, subject to prior approval
  • Electrical testing may need to be done before the appliance is used in the hospital and there may be a cost to have equipment tested for electrical safety
  • For more information, please refer to the site-specific  admission guide for the hospital you will be attending, or speak with a member of staff.
  • Talcum powder, large bottles of shampoos, conditioners or other liquids
  • Weapons or prohibited substances
  • Valuables, including jewellery or large amounts of cash