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Home / Patients & Visitors/ Planning Your Stay

Arriving at St. Mary’s – Main Site

When you arrive at St. Mary’s General Hospital, please sanitize your hands and if you choose to do so, wear a mask.

As of April 17, 2023, St. Mary’s has shifted from Universal Masking to a Mask-Friendly Policy.

What this means:

  • For visitors, Care Partners, patients, volunteers and team members, masks will no longer be required in hallways, meetings, breakrooms, shared offices and most clinical areas.
  • Patients can request that anyone in their presence wear a mask. This choice will be honoured and respected without question.
  • Care Partners and staff may be required to wear a mask while interacting with a patient in isolation or where additional precautions are in use. In each case, a sign will be posted on their door to communicate this change.
  • Patients presenting at SMGH’s Emergency Department with a respiratory illness will be asked to wear a mask while waiting for care. One Care Partner is permitted to accompany a patient due to space limitations.
  • SMGH may reintroduce universal masking based on disease activity, during respiratory season and for outbreak management.
  • Importantly, masks will remain available at SMGH for anyone that prefers to wear one, and your choice will be respected and supported.


Before Your Stay

911 Queen’s Boulevard
Kitchener, Ontario N2M 1B2
Telephone (Direct): 519-744-3311
Telephone (Auto): 519-749-6578 + extension
Facsimile: (519) 749-6426

St. Mary’s General Hospital is committed to ensuring accessibility to hospital facilities and services for patients and their family members. If you require any of the documents on our website in other formats, please contact our Patient Relations representative at 519-749-6578, ext. 6867.

Wheelchair Access (by location)

  • St. Mary’s General Hospital – 911 Queen’s Blvd., Kitchener
    Wheelchairs are located in the hospital’s main lobby. Please do not remove wheelchairs from hospital property.
    • Main Entrance
    • Emergency Entrance
    • Washrooms throughout the hospital (identifiable by the universal wheelchair symbol)
    • Cafeteria (Subway) via elevator from main floor
    • Tim Hortons
    • Chapel
  • St. Mary’s General Hospital Cardiac Rehabilitation – 50 Bathurst Dr. Unit #1, Waterloo
    Main entrance (no button at the door, assistance required)
  • Waterloo Region Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Treatment Centre – 400 Queen St. South, Kitchener
    Main entrance

For Deaf, Deafened and Hard of Hearing

TTY pay telephones are located in the basement of the hospital, adjacent to Café 911 as well as in the Emergency Department. Portable TTY telephones are also available for inpatients.

Interpretation Services

If you or your loved one is more comfortable speaking a language other than English, we invite you to bring a trusted friend or family member who speaks your native language AND fluent English with you to act as an interpreter. If you do not have someone to help you, let us know and we will contact a translation service to help you at no charge.

Sign Language Interpreter

 If you would like a sign language interpreter, you should mention this at the time of appointment booking. The Canadian Hearing Society will be contacted and will arrange for a qualified interpreter through its Ontario Interpreter Services program to join you during your visit.

Patient Escorts

St. Mary’s General Hospital has volunteers on duty throughout the day. The volunteers wear blue smocks and will be happy to assist you to your appointment or to visit a loved one. Please note that our volunteers cannot lift or transfer you.

Service Animals

Registered service animals are permitted in St. Mary’s General Hospital. Service animals are used by people with many different kinds of disabilities. Examples of service animals include dogs used by people who are blind, hearing alert animals for people who are deaf, deafened or hard of hearing, and animals trained to alert an individual to an oncoming seizure and lead them to safety (Guide to the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, Ontario Regulation).

If not readily apparent that the animal is a service animal, such as the vest or harness worn by the animal, SMGH may ask the person to provide documentation from a regulated health professionals (e.g. physician, chiropractor, audiologist, and optometrist, etc.) confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to the disability. The letter only needs to verify the need of a service animal for this person, and is not required to outline the person’s disability or purpose of the animal.

Service animals can be brought into any area of the hospital where permitted by our Infection Prevention & Control Department. Service animals are not permitted and excluded where sterile procedures occur. For reasons of infection prevention and control the service animal must remain with her/his owner at all times. Interaction with others is discouraged. In the event that a service animal and/or owner enters an isolation room or is unable to comply with infection control measures, Infection Prevention and Control must be consulted regarding any St. Mary’s General Hospital’s special precautions or requirements. It is the responsibility of the person with the disability to keep the animal in his/her care and control at all times.

Depending on the nature of your appointment, you may have paperwork you are required to bring with you. Please have this paperwork and your valid OHIP card (or alternate health insurance information for non-Ontario residents) ready when you register for your appointment.

During Your Stay

Your Personal Items

If you are coming for a planned procedure or appointment, please leave all valuable items at home or give them to a trusted friend or family member upon your arrival. This includes cash, credit cards, jewelry, important papers and any special items (such as orthotics). St. Mary’s is not able to guarantee safe-keeping of your personal items while you are admitted, and we cannot be held responsible for personal effects that are lost, stolen or damaged while you are in our care.

If you arrive in our emergency department and are unable to plan ahead to leave these items at home, again we ask that you give them to a trusted friend or family member upon your arrival. We cannot be held responsible for items that are lost, stolen or damaged while you are in our emergency department.

We ask that you please bring all of your medications with you to the hospital, which allows your health care team to complete a full medication history. The following are types of medications that should be included:

  • All prescribed medications
  • Any medications you are taking that do not require a prescription (example: ibuprofen, Tylenol, cough/cold products)
  • Nutritional supplements including vitamins and minerals
  • Recreational drugs

Once your medication history has been completed, we will send your medications home with your Care Partner.

Your Mail

Your incoming mail is delivered daily. A Canada Post mailbox (for outgoing mail) is located across the street from the Main Entrance, next to the bus shelter and stamps are sold in the Gift Shop.

Incoming mail should be addressed as follows:

Your Name and Room Number
c/o St. Mary’s General Hospital
911 Queen’s Boulevard
Kitchener, Ontario N2M 1B2

In-hospital Entertainment

St. Mary's now has new patient entertainment systems! These touchscreen devices have been installed at every bedside so patients will be able to rent entertainment and can access important information from the Welcome Package to discharge, helping to improve the experience while in our care.

When You are Discharged

Your care team will start to prepare you for your discharge date as soon as your care plan is in place. The hospital’s standard discharge time is 10:00 a.m. Please help us ensure a smooth transition for you by preparing your friends/loved one’s to support this discharge time.

More information can be found about supports available in the community here.

For the most up-to-date information, visit our Visitor and Care Partner Policy page.

Thank you for your patience and support as we work hard to keep everyone safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can find more information on our COVID-19 page. Please continue to check this page as well as our Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook pages for updates.


Infection Prevention and Control

Helping to prevent the spread of infectious illness in our hospital is everyone’s responsibility. Our infection prevention and control teams are experts and rely on the help of patients and visitors. As a patient or Care Partner, it is important that you follow any and all infection control directions. Please follow the guidelines below to avoid getting and spreading infections in the hospital:

  • Upon entry, you will be required to perform hand hygiene and wear a hospital-issued mask. Care Partners are asked to clean their hands before and after seeing their loved one and again before leaving the hospital.
  • Patients are encouraged to clean their hands often, especially after touching shared surfaces, before and after eating, and after going to the bathroom.
  • Please do not visit the hospital if you:
    • have cold or flu symptoms (fever, cough, sore throat or runny nose)
    • have unexplained gastrointestinal problems (upset stomach, vomiting or diarrhea)
    • have open wounds, sores or rashes
    • have been exposed to measles or chicken pox in the past 21 days and you are not vaccinated or have not had these illnesses before.
  • If a patient requires additional precautions (contact, droplet, airborne), Care Partners are required to follow infection prevention measures and wear personal protective equipment, as directed by the healthcare team.
  • Keep your immunizations up to date and get the influenza vaccine every year.

Scent Free Environment

St. Mary’s has a Scent Free Policy that applies to all patients, visitors, staff, physicians, volunteers, students and contractors. For the safety and comfort of those with allergies, scent sensitivities and breathing issues, please do not use scented products such as colognes, aftershaves, lotions, perfumes and scented personal care products.

Smoke Free Property

St. Mary’s is smoke free and supports provincial laws which ban smoking and the use of e-cigarettes on hospital property, including parking lots and within vehicles in those lots. The ban includes smoking and vaping of medical and non-medical cannabis. Individuals who do not comply face fines of up to $1,000.

As a centre for cardiac and respiratory health, we are committed to providing a smoke free environment for the health and safety of our patients, visitors, staff, physicians, volunteers and all others on hospital property.

If you want to smoke, please do so off hospital property.

If you are interested in quitting smoking, Smokers’ Helpline offers help by phone 1-877-513-5333 or online at www.smokershelpline.ca.

Violence Prevention Program

St. Mary’s is proactively working to increase workplace safety and ensure a safe environment for patients and staff. We have developed a comprehensive zero tolerance approach that includes prevention, communication, rapid response and education. On your visit to St. Mary’s, you will see signs alerting patients and visitors that verbal or physical abuse of our staff, doctors, volunteers or patients will not be tolerated. Thank you for your cooperation.

Fire Protection

St. Mary’s is dedicated to providing a safe environment for our patients and staff. In partnership with the Kitchener Fire Department, our staff practice regular fire safety procedures and test the alarms frequently. If there is a fire, the alarm bells will sound and you will hear an overheard page for Code Red; you should remember the following during a Code Red:

  • Visitors should remain in the patient’s room during the Code
  • Do not use hospital phones unless absolutely necessary
  • Do not use the elevators

St. Mary’s staff are trained to respond to emergency situations and will instruct patients and visitors in the event of an emergency.

If you discover fire; please leave the area (shutting the door behind you) and dial 888 on any hospital phone to report the fire (giving the location and extent of the fire). Leave the fire area and get to safety.

Fire exits are clearly marked throughout the hospital.

If you have any questions about fire safety procedures during your stay; please ask a member of your care team for more information.

Video/Electronic Surveillance

St. Mary’s wants to ensure the safety and security of patients, visitors, staff and property, while respecting individual’s rights to privacy.

SMGH uses video and electronic surveillance in conjunction with other safety and security measures and strategies to keep you safe. Video/electronic surveillance enables concurrent real-time monitoring of multiple areas within SMGH’s facilities/property and enhances the ability to monitor patients at risk in and around the facilities. Such surveillance may also prevent and/or deter adverse incidents, misconduct, and criminal activity.

If you have questions or concerns, please call our Privacy Officer at 519-479-6578, ext. 1209.

If you prefer a private or semi-private room during your hospital stay, a premium rate will be charged to you or your insurance company.

During admission or pre-admission you will be asked to request your preference for accommodation:

  • Private (one bed per room, private bathroom), $290 per day
  • Semi-Private (two beds per room, shared bathroom for two patients), $250 per day
  • Standard Ward (four beds per room, two shared bathrooms for four patients). Cost is covered for Ontario residents with a valid provincial health insurance (OHIP).

Please note rates are subject to change

How do I know if I am covered for a private or semi-private room?
Please check with your insurance provider to find out what your plan covers in terms of room type (i.e. private or semi-private) and amount.

Will St. Mary’s bill my insurance provider on my behalf?
St. Mary’s bills directly to most major extended health benefits plans. Please check with an SMGH admitting representative or your insurance provider to confirm that we can bill your insurance company on your behalf.

How do I request a private or semi-private room?
During admission or pre-registration, our admitting representatives will explain the hospital accommodation options available. You will be asked to sign our pre-admission form and to provide your insurance information.

Will I be able to reserve a room of my choice?
Your room choice is not guaranteed, but we will make every effort to provide.

Gift Shop – Madeleine’s

After being closed for just over two years, Madeleine's has reopened as of August 2, 2022. Madeleine's is open Monday-Friday from 10:00 am - 2:00 pm.


If you are sending flowers to a patient at St. Mary’s, please note that some types are not allowed under the hospital’s Scent Free Policy. This is because they can cause serious problems in some people with allergies, scent sensitivities and breathing issues.

Flowers not permitted in the hospital:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Freesias
  • Hyacinths
  • Lavenders
  • Lilacs
  • Lilies
  • Peonies
  • Poinsettias
  • Roses


Balloons are also a fun way to lift a patient’s spirits. Please note that due to latex allergies, only Mylar balloons are accepted at St. Mary’s.

St. Mary’s is pleased to provide free Wi-Fi to patients, families and visitors. We recognize that a hospital stay can be stressful and isolating and that staying connected with family and friends is an important part of the patient and family experience. Access to the public Wi-Fi network at St. Mary’s is available throughout the hospital.

As the Regional Cardiac and Chest Centre, St. Mary’s provides care to many people who live outside Waterloo Region. The following offers compassionate rates for our patients and families. Please contact the establishment directly to find out their current compassionate rate and to book your stay. Patients/Family members are responsible for booking and paying for their accommodation.

Crowne Plaza | Kitchener-Waterloo

105 King Street East, Kitchener, ON N2G 2K8

To Make a Reservation:

  • Book online at Crowne Plaza  ("Medical Hospital Rate" will be applied)
  • Call Hotel Reservations at 519-744-4141 (Please specify as “Medical Hospital Rate”)

Note: Guests booking this rate must be visiting the hospital for medical appointments or surgeries. A Doctor’s note will be required at check-in to qualify for the rate.

Hampton Inn and Suites

All guest rooms (King/2 Queen Standard & our King/2 Queen Studios) are discounted 15% off our best available rates. 

Included in the rates:

  • Full hot breakfast daily
  • Wi-Fi
  • Parking
  • Traditional-style guest rooms with mini-fridge and microwave
  • Free local calling (which may be helpful when families would like to call the hospital)
  • Heated saltwater pool and fitness center

To Make a Reservation: 

  • Individuals can book online by quoting the compassion code: 0002746557 (enter compassion code under special rates> corporate account)
  • Call Hotel Reservations at 519-514-0090 (quote compassion code: 0002746557)

Homewood Suites

King Studio Suite: $142.00 per night plus applicable taxes (4% municipal and 13% HST)

King or 2 Queen upgraded 1Bedroom Suite: $152.00 per night plus applicable taxes

Included in the rates are:

  • Full hot breakfast daily
  • Wi-Fi
  • Parking
  • Full suite accommodations, with a full-sized kitchenette
  • Wednesday night Manager Reception with light snacks, and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Free local calling (which may be helpful when families would like to call the hospital)
  • Heated saltwater pool and fitness center

To Make a Reservation:

  • Individuals can book online by quoting the compassion code: 0002746557 (enter compassion code under special rates> corporate account)
  • Call Hotel Reservations at 519-514-0088 (quote compassion code: 0002746557)



After Your Stay

Canadian Residents with Provincial or Federal Health Insurance

A resident of another province with valid provincial or federal insurance must provide valid health insurance information in order to have health care expenses paid by their respective plan.

  • These plans include and are not limited to: Canadian Armed Forces, Workers Safety Insurance Board, Interim Federal Health Program for refugees or the University Health Insurance Plan for students (UHIP).

Important tips to keep in mind:

  • Plans pay for a wide range of medically necessary services. This does not include services deemed medically unnecessary, such as cosmetic surgery and limited coverage on preferred accommodation.
  • St. Mary’s will bill the appropriate provincial or federal insurance plan.
  • Any claims rejected by the health care plan will be billed to the patient.
  • In some cases, physician and other services will have to be paid upfront by the patient and then a submission can be made to the plan for reimbursement to the patient.
  • If you do not present your insurance plan information at the time of registration, please contact our finance department as soon as possible at 519-749-6660 or email ARContact@smgh.ca.
  • If you have private insurance coverage for hospital costs, please provide this information at the time of registration.
  • It is your responsibility to understand the coverage provided by any private insurance company.

Out-of-Country Visitors and Canadian Residents Without Valid Health Insurance

Out-of-country visitors to Canada and Canadian residents without valid health insurance plans entering our Emergency Department are required to present payment at time of treatment.

Out-of-country patients must also complete and sign the following documents prior to treatment:

  • Responsibility for charges
  • Authorization for Disclosure of Patient Information
  • Governing Law and Jurisdiction Agreement

St. Mary’s will not accept private insurance for non-resident patients with out-of-country insurance companies. Out-of-country/non-resident patients must provide a credit card at the time of registration and pay for their hospital charges directly. Patients can then forward the claim to their private health insurer.

Please note all hospital fees are in addition to attending physician feed as billed by physician. For a full listing of hospital service pricing, please contact our finance department at 519-749-6660 or email ARContact@smgh.ca.

Across Ontario, patients are responsible for the full cost of their non-emergency transportation out of hospital, for all destinations, including home, retirement homes and long-term care facilities. The exception is if they are being transported to continue their current care at another destination.

The least costly option, wherever possible, is for patients to arrange non-emergency transportation with friends and family. Where that is not possible, a number of options exist (including taxi, public transportation and non-emergency patient transport vehicles).

For patients who need to leave the hospital on a stretcher or in a wheelchair, and have no other options, St. Mary’s staff will book transport. In these cases, patients will be sent an invoice for the cost of transportation and a $20 administration fee.

For patients who need to be relocated to another location as part of their current medical care at St. Mary’s, our staff will make transportation arrangements and these patients will not be charged for their transportation or fees.