Post-Anesthesia Care Unit

The Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) is a 33-bed unit that includes two isolation suites serving all levels of surgical care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The PACU is a high-level critical care area staffed by highly trained and experienced critical care nurses and support staff. Many PACU staff nurses hold national certifications in peri-anesthesia nursing or critical care. The nurse-to-patient ratio is 1-to-1 or 1-to-2 depending on the individual needs of the patient. Complete attention is paid to each patient with comprehensive state-of-the-art monitoring and a nurse at the patient’s side at all times. The anesthesiologists have oversight in the PACU and are available at a moment’s notice to assist in handling any emergency or issue that may arise in the process of awakening from surgery.

The PACU at RiverBend is located directly between the Surgery Entrance Area and waiting room and the operating rooms, providing easy access to family for staff and surgeons, as well as streamlined traffic flow for the patient throughout the surgical process. Pediatric patients have a specially arranged area within PACU that is stocked with all the essential items to provide comfort and care to all levels of pediatric patients.

It is PACU policy to include parents or family at the bedside during the recovery process whenever possible. Pre-operative procedures, such as nerve blocks to control post-operative pain, are performed by anesthesiologists with the assistance of PACU staff nurses prior to entering surgery in order to provide the highest level of monitoring and patient safety.