Pre-Admission Orientation Program
Welcome to Howard County General Hospital and the Joint Academy. Our orientation program allows you, your family and the hospital’s staff to plan and tailor nursing, physical therapy, dietary, social work, and home care services to meet your individual pre and postoperative needs for total knee or hip replacement surgery.
This educational session will introduce you to options for pain control, safe ways of performing activities postoperatively and will assist you with returning to activities of daily living. Our goal is to provide a smooth transition from hospital to home for all of our total joint replacement patients.
Schedule your orientation meeting:
When you schedule your surgery, you will need to schedule your orientation meeting that will be held via zoom. Meetings are held on Tuesday afternoons and Thursday mornings and should be at least two weeks prior to your date of surgery. ** Please call 410-720-8000 to schedule this appointment or schedule online.** We encourage you to invite a family member or friend who will serve as your “coach” to the orientation zoom meeting.
Three-four weeks prior to surgery:
You will need to schedule an appointment with your primary care physician for your preoperative physical exam, and lab work. If you are currently seeing any medical specialists (e.g., cardiologist, endocrinologist, pulmonologist), check with your primary care physician to see if you need medical clearance from them prior to surgery.
Please have your physicians fax your information to Documentation Central at 410-884-4842.
The entire class takes approximately one and a half hours. During this time, you will have an opportunity to:
- Discuss how to prepare for surgery with the Joint Academy coordinator. You will learn how to reduce your risk of infection through preoperative bathing and staph infection prevention.
- We will review your hospital stay and what to expect when you leave the hospital.
Our orientation is a great way for our health care team to prepare you and your family for your upcoming surgery and recovery. Please call the Joint Academy Coordinator with any questions prior to your admission at 410-720-8000 and be sure to check out our FAQ page.
- Contact your insurance company to find out about pre-authorization, co-payments and your coverage for physical therapy after surgery.
- Prepare your home. Stairs may be difficult initially. Arrange to stay on the first level for one to two weeks. Remove all throw rugs and cords that you might trip over.
- Exercise your arm muscles to improve your ability to use a walker or crutches after surgery.
- Strengthen and stretch your leg muscles to help support the knee while it’s healing.
- You should not have major dental work within one month prior to surgery. If dental care is necessary, contact your orthopedic physician for instructions. Routine cleanings are okay.
- Take multivitamins with iron daily.
- If you smoke, quit. Smoking can delay healing and slow recovery.
- Educate yourself about anesthesia options, risks, and side effects.