To determine current hospital practices and the opinions of senior health professionals working in Western Australian (WA) hospitals performing gynaecological procedures regarding pre‐operative pregnancy testing.

Anonymous questionnaire survey sent to all WA public and private hospitals’ senior clinical staff (38 units where gynaecological surgery was performed in WA).

Sixty‐one senior health professionals (heads of department, medical directors, theatre nurse managers), completed the survey (estimated response rate 71%). Thirty‐eight (68%) of respondents’ units had guidelines for pre‐operative pregnancy testing and 55% respondents worked in hospitals which tested all women of reproductive potential. Nineteen (33%) respondents reported cases in which patients had presented for surgery unaware they were pregnant. Forty‐one (76%) respondents believed that all women of reproductive potential should have routine pre‐operative pregnancy testing. Fifty‐four (89%) supported the introduction of national or statewide guidelines.

There are inconsistent processes of pre‐operative assessment of pregnancy status in WA hospitals performing gynaecological surgery potentially resulting in adverse incidents. The majority of senior clinical staff surveyed supported routine pre‐operative testing and the need for national or statewide guidelines.