HF 8234

Parental Presence at Induction

Parental Presence at Induction (PPI) allows one parent or other adult support person to stay with their child during the start of anesthesia. PPI may help reduce anxiety and provide comfort during the surgical process. Your child’s safety is our priority and there are times when PPI may not be suitable.

To Take Part in PPI

  • The anesthesiologist will decide if it is safe for you to be in the OR.

  • You and your child must both want to participate. It is OK if you do not want to go to the operating room (OR) with your child. We will work with you to make a plan to support your child.

PPI Rules for Parents

  • Safety gear: You will wear a surgical head cover, surgical mask, shoe covers, and a gown or paper suit. Always keep your mask over your nose and mouth. Do not pull it down anytime when you are in the OR.

  • Phone use: No pictures, videos, texting, or talking on your phone in the OR.

  • Be quiet: The OR team will do a final “time out” in which they briefly discuss the procedure and confirm your child’s identity. You do not need to participate. If you are talking to your child, please keep your voice low during this time.

  • Leaving the OR: We will take you back to the pre-op area when your child is asleep. For safety reasons, you may need to leave the OR before your child is completely asleep. If you want to leave the OR before induction, tell a staff member so they can take you back to the pre-op area.

What to Expect

Most children go to sleep using a mask to breathe anesthetic. Once the mask is on your child’s face, it needs to stay there. It is normal for some children to reach for the mask. You can help by holding your child’s hand.

While falling asleep, your child may move, talk, or even sit up. Your child may start to snore, their breathing may change, and their eyes may roll back. These responses are normal. Your child will not remember this stage.

How to Support Your Child in the OR

  • Stay calm and be a positive support to your child.

  • Sing or talk to your child in a soothing, quiet voice.

  • Distract your child with an activity they enjoy.

  • Avoid saying things such as “It’s going to be ok” or “I’m sorry”. This may cause more distress in some children. Distraction is a more helpful tool.

  • Allow your child to go to the OR without you if they wish.