When you leave  

To make sure your stay in hospital is no longer than necessary and that everything is in place for your comfortable return home, plans for your discharge are made as early as possible. 

You should be given a provisional discharge date within 24 hours of admission.

Your discharge plan

Your nurse will be responsible for arranging your discharge plan. If you have any concerns about how you will manage when you leave hospital please talk to your nurse or ward sister. Your nurse can arrange for other members of the hospital team (such as the social worker, integrated discharge service or care manager) to visit you on the ward and help you.

When making plans to leave hospital you might want to consider the following:

  • If you live alone, try to arrange for a relative or friend to check that your home is ready for your return.
  • Will you need food supplies at home? You can ask for a hospital volunteer to do some shopping for you on the day of your discharge, but please make sure you have the money to pay for it.
  • Is your home suitable for your return or will it require some adaptations to meet your needs?
  • Will you or your carer be able to manage when you return home?
  • Will you have housing problems on or soon after discharge?
  • Will you require Social Services on discharge?
  • Will you need independent financial advice?
  • Do you need help with personal care?
  • Will you require home help to do your shopping, housework, meals or laundry?
  • Will you require meals on wheels?
  • Will you need transport home?

You will not be discharged until all the appropriate arrangements have been made to meet your needs. You and, if you agree, your carer will be involved and informed at all stages of discharge planning.

Your leaving hospital checklist

 When you are ready to be discharged your nurse should make sure you have:

  • A copy of the GP letter
  • All the medications you need with information about them, including usage and storage*
  • Details of care required from other health professionals (such as practice nurse/district nurse)
  • Understood your agreed care plan
  • Information about potential lifestyle changes with appropriate advice sheets to help you
  • Contact numbers for the ward to help you if you have any concerns
  • Taken the opportunity to ask questions

*If you have any queries about your medications you can ring the UCLH Pharmacy Helpline on 020 3447 3025.  The helpline is open Monday to Friday, from 10am - 12pm and then 2pm - 4pm.

And please make sure you:

  • Give the ward administrator a forwarding address
  • Return any hospital library books
  • Ask your nurse for any medical certificates you need
  • Collect any money or valuables you have handed in
  • Return any hospital equipment you no longer need

If you are going to care home or hospice after being in hospital you will be tested for coronavirus before you leave hospital. If the result of the test is positive, your care home will make arrangements to prevent the virus spreading to other residents or staff, following national guidance.