Prepare Program at Parnassus

Before a surgical procedure at our Parnassus hospital, your doctor will schedule an appointment for you at our Prepare Clinic, the anesthesia and surgical evaluation program. Prepare Clinic staff will ensure you're ready for surgery and that you complete the tests you need before your operation.

To plan for a smooth operation and recovery, you will be assessed by a doctor or nurse practitioner at the Prepare Clinic before your surgery. Depending on your health, this assessment will occur by phone or in person at the clinic.

You'll be asked to complete a brief, online questionnaire at to help determine the type of appointment appropriate for you. If you or a member of your family can't complete the online questionnaire, please complete pages 18 and 19 of the pre-admission brochure "For Your Hospital Stay" before speaking with the Prepare nurse practitioner.

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Pre-surgery Assessment

Your responses will be reviewed by a nurse practitioner to determine the type and length of appointment. The Prepare Clinic will contact you to select a convenient date and time for your assessment.

During your assessment, a nurse practitioner will review your health history, provide detailed instructions on how to manage your medications, and give you information about your anesthetic options.


Some medications require special consideration. For example, if you take an anticoalgulant or blood thinner such as warfarin or aspirin, you may be asked to stop taking these medications prior to surgery. If you have a heart stent or mechanical heart valve or if you've been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, deep vein thrombosis or a blood clotting disorder, you'lll be asked to check with your doctor before you stop taking these medications/

If your surgeon requests laboratory or other diagnostic tests before surgery, the tests will be printed on the "After Visit Summary.” Your surgeon may give you printed requisition forms.

If you're seen in person in the Prepare Clinic, the tests will be performed during your appointment. If you're evaluated by phone, a member of the Prepare team will let you know when and where these studies can be performed. For many operations, blood tests, EKGs and chest X-rays are not needed.

Heath Records Review

Your health records will be reviewed by an anesthesiologist or nurse before surgery. If you have had any of the following tests performed outside of UCSF Medical Center, you or your doctor may be asked to fax the reports to the Prepare Clinic at (415) 353-8577 or scan and email them to as soon as possible:

In addition, you or your doctors may be asked to provide clinic notes from:

  • Your primary care doctor, within the past 12 months
  • Specialists, such as cardiologists, you've seen during the past two years.

Your surgeon's office will provide you with the location, date and time of your operation.

To contact the Prepare Clinic about your assessment, call (415) 353-1480.

Learn more about the Prepare for Surgery workshop at the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Mount Zion.

Your Day of Admission

You may drink up to one glass of water with your medications on the morning of surgery, but no other food or liquids should be consumed.

Please arrive at the hospital at the time indicated by your surgeon's office or the Prepare Clinic. When you arrive, please go to the pre-operative waiting room in M-104J on the first floor of the hospital, unless you have been told otherwise.

  • A receptionist in the pre-operative waiting room will greet you and let the surgical staff know you have arrived.
  • A staff member will escort you to the pre-surgical area, where you'll be assigned a comfortable gurney, asked to put on a hospital gown and be prepared for surgery. One friend or relative may wait with you until you are taken to surgery.
  • If you would like to meet with a chaplain before your surgery, please call to make an appointment.
  • A nurse will take your vital signs. The anesthesiologist will visit you to review the anesthesia and answer any questions you may have.
  • If an epidural is used for anesthesia and pain management, it may be started at this time.
  • Once the surgical team and the operating room is ready, you'll taken to the operating room and your friend or relative will be asked to return to the pre-operative waiting room.
  • Your friend or relative may track your progress by asking the receptionist in the waiting room.
  • After your surgery, you will be taken to the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU), which provides post anesthesia or sedation care and can accommodate patients requiring extended observation, if needed. No visitors are allowed in this unit. You'll be transferred to a hospital room when your doctor feels you are ready.

Prepare for Surgery Workshop

UCSF offers a free "Prepare for Surgery" workshop to help ease patients' worries and answer their questions before surgery. Hosted by a team of experts from anesthesia, pain management and integrative medicine, this free class is held two Mondays a month. For more information, please click the "Free Workshop" tab below.

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Getting Here

Prepare Program at Parnassus
505 Parnassus Ave., Suite L-171
San Francisco, CA 94143-0210
Phone: (415) 353-1480
Fax: (415) 353-8577

Hours: Monday to Friday
8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

What to Bring

  • Health insurance information including authorizations or referrals
  • List of prescription medications and dosages
  • List of medications that you're allergic to
  • List of questions you may have
  • Recent test results related to your condition
  • Paper and pencil to take notes

What to Expect

    We will provide instructions for your hospital admission, including where to check in and restrictions regarding what you may eat and drink before your operation.

    On the day of your surgery, please arrive two hours prior to your scheduled procedure. You may be asked to complete additional forms on the day of your operation.

Access Your Health Information Online

This clinic uses UCSF MyChart, an online patient service. Message your provider, request medication refills, view some test results and more.

Learn more about UCSF MyChart

Research and Clinical Trials

Free Workshop

To help reduce anxiety, enjoy peace of mind and get answers to questions you might have about your pending surgery, join our Prepare for Surgery Workshop.

This free workshop is led by a team of UCSF experts from anesthesia, pain management and integrative medicine. Together, we will help you understand your options for anesthesia and pain management and teach you mind-body techniques to help you relax and achieve a state of mind conducive to healing.

People who participate in this workshop often:

  • Feel more relaxed before surgery
  • Have more tools to manage pre-surgery anxiety
  • May require less pain medication

Note: You are welcome to attend at any time, but the class is most helpful 2-3 weeks before surgery. If you are unable to attend, one-on-one pre-surgery preparation is available with Teresa Corrigan, RN, MA, CLYT.

Time: Two Mondays per month, 6 to 8:30 p.m.

Location:1545 Divisadero St., 4th Floor, Room 424

Fee: Free

Instructors: Teresa Corrigan and Brenda Watkins.

Registration/Info: Please call (415) 353-7718 or email.

2016 Dates:

  • January 11 & 25
  • February 8 & 22
  • March 7 & 21
  • April 4 & 18
  • May 2 & 16
  • June 6 & 20
  • July 11 & 25
  • August 8 & 22
  • September 12 & 26
  • October 3 & 17
  • November 7 & 21
  • December 5 & 19

This class is in collaboration with: UCSF Perioperative Services, Department of Anesthesia and Nursing


  • 95% of participants agree that they feel more prepared for surgery after taking the class. 99% of participants would recommend this class to their doctor for referrals.
  • 100% of participants would recommend this class to their friends.
  • "Honestly, I feel like this class is fantastic. The information presented by the doctor was great; the stress, anxiety relief, breathing exercises and guided imagery were outstanding. Thank you."
  • "Amazing class! I highly recommend this workshop. It made a huge difference to me in my sense of being heard and having information, knowing my choices, knowing that this is the best care available, so I can relax and trust. Thank you for the wonderful shift in my outlook and all the positive strategies. You guys are so compassionate, caring and generous! Thank you!"


Parking at Parnassus

Public parking for an hourly fee at UCSF Medical Center is available in the seven-level Millberry Union Garage at 500 Parnassus Ave. There are two garage entrances — one on the north side of Parnassus Avenue and another on Irving Street, just east of Third Avenue.

Another garage with an hourly fee, at 350 Parnassus Ave., is open Monday to Friday from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Metered street parking is rarely available.

Patients being admitted to the hospital may be dropped off at the circular driveway leading to the main entrance at 505 Parnassus Ave. This area also may be used to pick up patients who are being discharged.

For more information about parking at Parnassus, call Campus Parking Services at 476-2566.

Valet Parking Service

Valet parking service is available at the Ambulatory Care Center (ACC) at 400 Parnassus Ave. from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. The valet service is free but patients must pay regular parking fees. For more information about the valet service, call (415) 476-6200.

A UCSF "greeter" also is available at the ACC from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to assist patients find their way.

Public Transportation


UCSF Medical Center is accessible via Muni streetcar line N-Judah*, which stops at Second Avenue and Irving Street, and the following Muni bus lines, which stop in front of the hospital:

  • 43-Masonic*
  • 6-Parnassus

For more information about Muni visit,

* Wheelchair accessible bus routes