Discharge home

Getting you home as soon as you're well enough

It’s important for us to work together to make sure you’re not in hospital any longer than you need to be.

We produce a booklet available to all patients and their families with advice about going home. You can also ask a member of staff for the booklet which has this picture on the cover.

Staying in hospital once you are well enough to leave has an impact on your health.

  • Research has found that for every ten days of bed rest in hospital, patients aged over 80 suffer the equivalent of ten years of muscle ageing – this can make a big difference in how independent you are after leaving hospital
  • Older people are more likely to become confused when in hospital. This confusion can have a lot of side effects, including making dementia worse. It can mean the difference between going home or going into a nursing home. We’re not sure why being in hospital has this impact, but it’s probably due to being in an unfamiliar and stressful place, away from a normal routine
  • These unfamiliar surroundings and confusion make it more likely that patients will fall whilst they are in hospital. We do all we can to prevent this from happening but there are around 250,000 inpatient falls every year in the UK. Falling can cause injures and means that patients will spend even longer in hospital. Many of these patients wouldn’t have fallen if they had been at home


That’s why we want to discharge you from our hospitals as soon as we can, so you can recover at home or in another place more suitable for your needs and get back to your normal routine as soon as possible.


Did you know?

  • Getting out of your nightclothes and into normal clothes can help you to start feeling better
  • Try to stay mobile if you can – it can help your recovery – make sure you ask if you can get up and out of bed
  • Not smoking whilst in hospital can help you recover faster – nicotine replacement therapy can help and is available free of charge



How you and your family can support your discharge

There will be a lot of different people involved in your care – all of them will have the aim of getting you back home as quickly as possible. They will talk to you and your relatives about your discharge, They will let you know when we think you are ready to be discharged and what needs to happen to get you out of hospital.

Hopefully you will be able to go straight home, or it may be that you need more care, or further assessment in another hospital, or a place closer to home. This will be delivered by another NHS or social care provider and we will work with them to ensure a smooth transfer of your care. We will work with these teams to make sure you have any help and support you need.

During your stay, we may move you to a different ward either at Southport or Ormskirk hospitals – this is to make sure you are receiving the most appropriate care for your needs.

It’s really important that you talk to your relatives, carer or friend and to the teams looking after you about your discharge. Don’t be afraid to ask what’s happening – the teams looking after you know how important it is that we get you home. Make sure you let us know of any support you already have – such as equipment or carers.

We will involve you in planning your discharge along with a relative, carer, or friend of your choice. Where a patient is unable to make their own decisions and does not have anyone to support them, we can arrange for an independent representative (patient advocate) to support them in discussions about their future care. Please let us know if you think this may be needed.

Leaving hospital

On the day of your discharge, you may be transferred to our discharge area or to a comfortable seated area of the ward, where you will be looked after until you leave the hospital.

We will aim to get you home before lunchtime wherever possible, so you are not kept waiting in the hospital and have time to settle in at home or in the place you are transferred to.

You may be provided with a small supply of medication on discharge. Staff will ensure you have clear instructions on how to take your medication and any possible side effects. If you are unclear, please ask staff for assistance.

Upon leaving the hospital if you have any questions about your medication you should contact your local pharmacy or family doctor (GP), or the hospital ward if you have been advised to do so.

When you are discharged from hospital you will return to the care of your GP who will receive a summary of your treatment from the hospital.