During Your Stay

During Your Stay

Personal Belongings
Please do not store valuable items – such as money, jewelry, or other personal belongings – in your room at the hospital. While we strive to maintain the highest possible standards of security, the Medical Center cannot be responsible for the loss of or damage to personal property. Please talk with your nurse about storing valuable personal items. In addition, if you wear dentures or eyeglasses, please pay special attention to where you place them after removing them.

Good nutrition plays an important part in your health and well-being. The Food and Nutrition Department at the Medical Center makes every effort to ensure that your meals are nutritious, tasty and served to you promptly. Meals are normally served within the following hours, according to your unit’s schedule:

Breakfast – 7:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Lunch – 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Dinner – 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Television and Telephone Rental
To arrange for patient telephone and television rental service in your room, please call 572-6000. There is a daily rental charge – presently $7.00 for television service and $4.00 for telephone service – which must be paid to our representative. Representatives are available Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on Saturday.

Incoming telephone calls go directly to your room. To make a call within the hospital, dial ‘2’ followed by the four-digit extension (for example, 2-0123). Dial ‘9’ followed by the phone number to make an outgoing call. Long distance calls must be made collect, on a calling card, or billed to a third party phone number. If you use a calling card to make a long distance phone call, please dial ‘7’, then ‘2’, then ‘0’ before dialing the area code and phone number.

Translation Services
NUMC serves the needs of a diverse population. Some of our patients speak little or no English. Since we are also fortunate to have a multicultural staff, we put together a list of employees who speak various languages. This list has been distributed to all hospital departments. If you or a member of your family need an interpreter, please request one from your caregiver.

No Smoking Policy
For the health of all and the comfort of most, smoking is not allowed inside the Medical Center. NUMC allows smoking only in designated areas outside the building. Please help us to make your hospital stay and that of your fellow patients as comfortable as possible by refraining from smoking.

Fire Safety
Nassau University Medical Center strives to provide a fire-safe environment. Our program for doing this includes preventive maintenance of the building’s fire protection features, training of staff so they can be well prepared in the event of a fire emergency, and interim life safety measures to offset special situations created by construction projects.

During your stay at NUMC, you may hear fire bells. The bells may sound for several reasons – a test of the fire alarm system, a malfunction of a device within the fire alarm system, a fire drill, or an actual fire. In the event of a fire, the number of bells rung lets the staff know its location.

Should fire bells sound at a location close to your floor, you will notice an increase in staff activity. They may begin closing doors and clearing rolling stock from the corridors. The smoke doors in the corridors (which prevent fire and smoke from spreading) may also close – this is a normal part of the fire emergency procedure, and is no cause for alarm.

A staff member, usually a nurse, will give you any information you may need to know in the event of a fire emergency. If necessary, in rare cases, your bed may be moved past the next set of smoke doors on your floor.

Healthcare Proxy and Living Will
The New York Healthcare Proxy Law allows you to appoint someone you trust, such as a family member or close friend, to decide about treatment if you lose the ability to decide for yourself. You appoint someone by signing a form called a Healthcare Proxy.

The person you select is called your health care agent. He or she will have as much or as little authority as you decide.

  • You can give the agent decision-making power about all health care, or only about certain treatments
  • You may give your healthcare agent instructions that he or she has to follow. The agent then makes sure that health care professionals follow your wishes, and decides how your wishes apply as your medical condition changes.

A Health Care Proxy form is included in the booklet entitled Your Rights as a Hospital Patient, which you will receive when you are admitted. You may also get a copy of the form from a Nassau University Medical Center Patient Representative, whom you can call at 516 296-3316.

A Healthcare Proxy is not the same as a Living Will. A Living Will is a document that provides specific instructions about healthcare treatment. It’s usually used to declare wishes to refuse life-sustaining treatment under certain, specified circumstances.

Give the Gift of Life
Nassau University Medical Center is affiliated with the New York Organ Donor Network. We urge everyone to consider making the commitment to become an organ and tissue donor.

Make a commitment to organ donation by signing an organ donor card or the back of your driver’s license. Tell your family about your decision and have them witness your signature.

Hospital personnel will only proceed with organ donation after consent has been obtained by a patient’s next of kin. Talk about your wishes now so they can carry out your decision later.

To receive a free informational brochure and donor card, call the NEW YORK ORGAN DONOR NETWORK at 1-800-GIFT-4-NY.

Payment for Your Care
Our Patient Accounts Department (572-6669) provides a number of services to help alleviate the financial burden of health care for patients. NUMC has an on-site Medicaid office to assist in completing applications for state assistance, as well as a counseling service to assess family finances and determine any applicable adjustment to charges for those patients without insurance.

For those patients whose income exceeds the ability rating guidelines, we offer a variety of payment options, including a 24-month, no-interest installment plan.

You may also receive a bill for physician services performed here at the hospital. Please be aware that these charges are separate from other services associated with your hospital stay and/or treatment, and are thus not included on any other bill you may receive.

NUMC has a Practice Plan Billing Office on-site that will respond to any questions you may have about your bill for physician services. The telephone numbers of this office are (516) 572-6374 and (516) 572-6913.

Medicare Patients
As a Medicare patient, you have the following rights under New York State law:

  • Before you are discharged, you must receive a written discharge plan. You or your representative have the right to be involved in your discharge planning.
  • Your written discharge plan must describe the arrangements for any future health care that you may need after discharge. You may not be discharged until the services required in your written discharge plan are secured or determined to be reasonably available.
  • If you do not agree with the discharge plan or believe the services are not reasonably available, you may call the New York State Health Department to investigate your complaint and the safety of your discharge. The hospital must provide you with the Health Department’s telephone number if you ask for it.

Nassau University Medical Center has its own HMO (Health Maintenance Organization), known as HealthFirst. Those who join it receive pediatric and adult medical care, as well as maternity, women’s health, mental health, and alcohol and substance abuse services.

Among member benefits are:

  • Access to the fully staffed Doctors After Hours, open from 7:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. Monday through Saturday, and 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. on Sunday for non-emergency cases.
  • 24-hour-a-day telephone contact with health care providers who can address concerns.
  • A multi-lingual clerical and clinical staff, speaking English, Spanish and Haitian-Creole.
  • Health centers that are open mornings, afternoons and evenings.
  • Located in convenient sites throughout Nassau County.
  • Members are also reimbursed for transportation to and from covered medical services when approved by HealthFirst.

For more information about HealthFirst services and eligibility requirements, call 1-800-404-8778 (English) or 1-800-408-8778 (Spanish). To reach the HealthFirst office on the NUMC campus, call (516) 572-3056.

When You Leave the Hospital
While you are in the hospital, your health care team includes physicians, nurses, dietitians, a social worker and a case manager, all of whom are available to answer questions regarding your discharge plan, discharge date, and any procedures relating to post-hospital care.

Discharge planning is the process by which your health care team helps you plan for your care after you leave the hospital. The overall process is coordinated by a social worker and/or discharge planner to assure that your discharge will proceed smoothly.

Before you leave the hospital, you will receive a written discharge plan with instructions for follow-up care. In addition, within 24 hours before your scheduled release, you will be given a written discharge notice. This notice will indicate the date you are scheduled to leave the hospital. It will also explain how and when to appeal if you feel that you are not ready to be discharged.

Our social workers can make your transition back into the community as easy as possible.

To contact the Social Work office, call (516) 572-4912.