Planning A Hospital Stay
Useful tips to help you prepare ahead of time
Nobody likes having to go into the hospital. But it may be needed, as in the case of a planned surgery. If you or a family member plans to go to the hospital, it is a good idea to be prepared. Below are some tips to help with a smooth transition from hospital to home that also can help reduce the chance that you may need to be admitted back into the hospital because of a problem:
- Bring a complete list of your prescription, over-the-counter and herbal medications, including the dose and frequency, to the hospital on the day of your admission.
- Work with the discharge planning staff to make a hospital follow-up plan.
- Be sure to ask if there are any changesincluding dose or frequencyto the medications that you were taking before your hospital stay.
- Take an active role in your discharge and treatment planning. Your plan should include your family, friends, or others who are available to help after your hospital stay.
- Learn any important details about your condition and what you need to do to take care of yourself.
- If you have special needs (e.g. transportation) that could keep you from going to your follow-up appointment, tell the hospital discharge planner so they can help.
- Schedule a follow-up appointment within seven days after you leave the hospital.
- Bring your hospital discharge plan along with a list of your medications to your follow-up appointment(s) as some of the drugs may have changed while you were in the hospital.
- Carry important information on you at all times about your condition, medications, doctor and pharmacy contact information.
To help with your discharge from the hospital:
- Review the Successful Hospital-to-Home Planning guide
- Complete the Hospital Discharge Checklist
- Print and fill out the Hospital Discharge Wallet Card with helpful information to keep with you at all times (Print on the front and back of a piece of paper.)
For more information about preparing for a hospital visitincluding what to pack and planning for medical billsvisit our Healthwise Encyclopedia.
Last updated: October 2017