Getting ready for discharge

Even at the beginning of your hospital stay, it’s good to plan ahead so that you can get home as soon as you are well enough.

We’ve produced an animated film in collaboration with patients, staff and students to give you information about what you can do to help you leave hospital sooner. You can watch the short film by clicking on the link below.

Questions to ask so that you can be ready for discharge

  • When am I going?
    We will give you as much notice as possible about the day and time you will be leaving hospital.
  • Where do I expect to go to?
    It is OK to discuss plans with your doctor or nurse at any stage.
  • Will I be able to look after myself at home? If not, what can I do to prepare?
  • Do family, friends or carers need to know the plan? Anyone who helps to look after you at home should be involved in all discussions about you leaving hospital.
  • How will I leave?
    Most people make their own arrangements to get home. If you think you need hospital transport, a nurse will need to check if you are eligible.
  • What happens next if I need more care after I leave?
    A letter (called a discharge summary) will be sent to your GP. You will be given a copy of this before you leave. It will explain what care you have had, the medicines you have been given, and any follow-up care that is planned or that needs to be arranged by your GP.
  • Will I have any further appointments? If so, how will I know when they are?
  • What medicines do I need?
    We will give you enough medicines for the first 2 weeks. Your GP will usually arrange any repeat prescriptions.
  • Do I have clothes to get home in?
  • Do I have key or will other people need a key to my home?
    If others need to get into your home, you may need a key safe installed. You need to arrange this as soon as possible so this does not delay your discharge.
  • Do I need help getting things ready at home, such as food and heating?
  • Do I have the equipment I brought in with me, such as stick or walking frame?
  • Do I need to get any property or valuables back from the hospital staff?

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