Was this page useful?

*Required Field

SJHH / Health Services/ Surgical Services/ Surgical Step Down Unit

Surgical Step Down Unit

What this program does…

The Surgical Step Down Unit (SDU) is one of the three critical care units located at St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton.  This unit specializes in caring for patients who require an advanced level care before and/or after their surgical procedure.  

How this program helps...

The staff working in area has extensive knowledge and skills to provide essential monitoring to patients, especially those undergoing a surgical procedure.  Most patients requiring this high level of care will have their heart, blood pressure, temperature and oxygen level assessed constantly via a cardiac monitor.   This specialized care is provided until the health care team has determined that patient care can be delivered on an inpatient unit.   

Your Care Team

Our strong dedicated health care team consists of nursing staff and other health care professionals such as physiotherapists, social workers and dieticians. We work collaboratively with surgeons as well as other medical specialists to meet patients’ care needs while in this critical care area.


Karen Baguley RN, MScN
Nurse Manager
905 522 1155 ext 33175
Head and Neck Charge Nurse
905 522 -1155 ext 33266

Preparing for Your Visit

You should bring personal care items such as a toothbrush, brush, shaving equipment and feminine hygiene products. In this area, you will be given a hospital gown to wear as it makes it easier for the staff to care for incision, tubes and lines you may have. When participating with physiotherapy it is helpful to have pajama bottoms and/or a housecoat to keep you covered and warm. Don’t forget a pair of non-slip slippers or shoes! Personal mobile devices (PDA) can be brought in at your discretion. Please remember that the hospital is a busy place and there is no area to secure electronics brought from home.

We ask that you do not bring any valuables with you as the hospital cannot be responsible for lost or stolen personal items. 

For more information please download the following brochure.

After Your Visit

Your care team will provide specific directions regarding post-operative care prior to discharge from the hospital.