Respiratory Sleep Unit

The Respiratory Sleep Unit has five beds and is open during office hours (8am-4pm), and then from 7.30pm at night (Sunday to Friday) and from 7.30pm on Saturday night until 8am on Sunday morning.


Respiratory Sleep Unit telephone number: 020 7405 9200 ext. 0462

General enquiries (Sleep Administrator): 020 7405 9200 extension 6948

If your child has any additional needs, please call in advance to let us know.

Who you will meet

The Respiratory Sleep Unit is staffed by Respiratory and Sleep Clinical Physiologists, specifically trained in the area of paediatric sleep medicine. 

Prior to each sleep study, one of the respiratory registrars will visit each child to ensure an adequate history is taken, as well as checking that the child is generally in good health for the study to be performed. 

You will be required to fill out a questionnaire about your child's sleep. You may be required to see either the sleep consultant or sleep fellow in the morning following your study.

Other members of the team include our Non-invasive Clinical Nurse Specialists, Play Specialist and Administration staff.

Conditions we treat

The services which we provide are overnight sleep studies for: 

  • the evaluation and treatment of sleep disorders
  • initiation, support and follow-up of non-invasive ventilation or supplemental oxygen.

Ward Information

Staying with your child

The unit is care-by-parent, which requires one parent to be with the child at all times during their stay. Only one parent may stay with their child due to health and safety regulations.

Privacy and dignity

We do everything we can to protect the privacy and dignity of your child at all times during their stay at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH). Your child will be allocated a bed space according to how their physical, psychological and social needs are best met while taking into consideration the needs of other children and young people on the unit at that time.

As part of our progress towards protecting your child’s dignity, we have introduced a new type of theatre gown. This provides unrestricted access for our nurses and doctors while keeping your child covered up and comfortable at all times.

Security and fire

For security reasons, the doors to Respiratory Sleep Unit are kept locked. Please ring the bell and when asked, state who you are and the name of the child you have come to visit.

The unit is open at 7.30pm, which is when children and their parent/guardian will be asked to arrive. 

All members of staff must wear an identity badge at all times. If someone not wearing an identity badge approaches you or your child at any time, please check with a member of staff. If you are at all worried, please call security on extension 5999.

Our security guards are on duty in the hospital 24 hours a day, seven days week. They are here to protect all our staff, patients and visitors and do regular patrols f all the buildings. Remember if you see anything out of the ordinary, ask a member of staff to contact security. Try not to bring valuable items to the hospital, as we cannot accept responsibility for the loss of or damage to any personal belongings.

All parts of the hospital site are protected by a very sensitive fire alarm system. If you are on the unit when the fire alarm sounds continuously, please remain calm and follow the instructions from the nurse in charge. If you are elsewhere in the hospital, please remain where you are and follow the instructions from a member of staff. Do not return to the unit until the area is declared safe by the hospital fire team.

Smoking is not allowed anywhere on GOSH property, which includes inside any of the buildings or areas nearby including entrances. Please do not smoke in our main entrance or near hospital buildings, as we will ask you to move elsewhere.

Visiting a patient at GOSH

We know that having visitors can make things seem more ‘normal’ for our patients. Another parent, grandparents, brothers and sisters are welcome to visit, however they will be asked to leave following the sleep study set-up, so as to control the noise and number of people on the ward.

Please note that one parent has to be present while other people are visiting or they have to give written permission for visitors while they are not there. If there is any confusion about who can visit a child, we will always give priority to people with ‘parental responsibility’ for the patient.

Our patients’ safety is our utmost concern and if a parent is not present and they have not given permission for visitors, we can and will refuse entry to the unit.

How many people can visit?

Space is quite limited on most of our wards, so we ask that a maximum of three people (including the parent) visit a child at one time. If more than three people want to visit, please take it in turns to visit the unit. Other visitors can get a drink or something to eat in one of our eating-places while they wait.

What can I bring?

You are welcome to bring presents for our patients but please be aware of some restrictions.

  • Latex (stretchy rubber) balloons are not allowed, as some of our patients have life threatening latex allergy. Foil balloons do not cause these problems so you are welcome to bring these.
  • Flowers - water in the vase can develop a bacterium that can cause infection in children.
  • Some materials on certain wards ie fluffy/fleece blankets. Please check with the nurse.
  • Please check with the nurse before you bring in food, such as chocolates and sweets, as some of our patients are on restricted diets.
  • When you are visiting, please keep the area around the child’s bed tidy so that our nurses can reach the bed easily and quickly.

Please note that the hospital cannot accept responsibility for any loss of or damage to personal property.

Finding the unit

Please ask the child’s parents for the name of the unit. Our reception staff can tell you where the child is staying but will ask you for proof of identity. Volunteers near the main reception desk can escort you to the unit or give you directions.

Infection control

Please do not visit if you have a cold, cough or an upset stomach, or think you have recently been in contact with someone who has. You should wait until you have not had any symptoms for 48 hours before you visit. Other infectious diseases including chicken pox and measles could be particularly dangerous for some of our patients so please do not visit if you have been in contact with them recently.

If you are unsure, please call the Sleep Administrator, on 020 762 6948, prior to attending the sleep unit.

When you visit, please wash your hands thoroughly before you enter the unit and use the alcohol gel provided at each door. When you leave the patient, please wash your hands again and use alcohol gel. Every member of staff is reminded to wash their hands before visiting a child, so please ask us.

Will you give me information about the patient’s progress?

We will only give this information to the child’s parents, unless they give us permission to tell anyone else. If family and friends want to receive regular updates on a child’s progress, we suggest parents tell one person who is then responsible for telling everyone else. This is often easier to manage than making lots of phone calls every time a child’s condition changes.

Important information

GOSH is a smoke-free zone, which means that you cannot smoke anywhere inside hospital property and adjacent areas, such as entrances to hospital buildings.

You can use your mobile phone inside the hospital, but only within designated ‘mobile phone friendly zones’. Using your mobile elsewhere could cause interference with our medical equipment.

We will not tolerate any kind of inappropriate or threatening behaviour – verbal, physical or psychological – and we have a policy to ensure that this is dealt with appropriately. We can and will remove people from GOSH in these circumstances.

If you have any questions about visiting, please telephone the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (Pals) Office before you visit on 020 7829 7862.


You are a valued member of your child‘s healthcare team and we encourage you to take part in his or her care as much as possible while in hospital.

The unit has two rooms with private bathrooms which are allocated as priority to those children requiring manual handling or isolation due to infection. If they are not required, the unit will try to allocate these rooms to those patients requiring extra space or privacy. 

One parent or legal guardian must be present for the entire study. The parent or guardian will sleep in the same room as their child, with each room having a parent bed.

Be sure to bring comfortable clothes for yourself, in addition to the pyjamas you brought for your child. 

Meals are not provided for either the child or parent.

There are various locations within the hospital and local area in which food may be bought and eaten on the sleep unit. Please note the majority of hospital facilities may be closed after 8pm, so it is advisable to bring food for both you and your child from home.

We have a small kitchen on the unit with a microwave, drinking water and drinks facilities. Tea and coffee is available for parents.

You are welcome to store food in the unit fridge, but please make sure it is labelled with your child’s name and the date it was opened. This helps us to ensure that out-of-date food is thrown away.

There are no telephones located in the bedrooms. Mobile phones can only be used outside the unit in designated mobile-friendly zones. Using them elsewhere can interfere with our medical equipment.

Wi-Fi is available on request at the reception desk.

There is no dedicated playroom on the unit. It is advisable to bring your own play equipment as necessary, however, a wide variety of toys, DVDs and books may be borrowed and used in the room whilst your child is on the unit. 

Please ensure that these are returned when you are finished. It may also be useful for your child to bring in their favourite toy, blanket or pillow to help with getting settled on the unit.

More information

For more information about facilities available for parents, family members, visitors and patients in the hospital, including the Chapel and multi-faith room, hospital school, activity centre and information on where you can eat or find facilities such as launderettes, please visit our Facilities A-Z page.