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Discharge planning

Planning to get you home (discharge planning) is a complicated process, and involves coordinating a surprising number of health care staff eg doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, pharmacists, etc, etc.It can be a complicated process which can seem to take forever, but it is important for us to make sure that you're ready and safe to go home, that you have the help or equipment you might need when you get there, and that you know who to contact if you need help or advice.

Patients and families sometimes tell us that they would like to be kept more up to date with any arrangements that are being made. All too often, patients and families tell us that different people tell them different things about when they are getting home. In this section, we've provided some general information on what to expect in terms of discharge planning and the types of help that are available to you.  


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External Video: Exercises and Physiotherapy to help recovery

In this clip physiotherapist, Dr Bronwen Connolly explains how critical illness affects joints and muscles to cause joint stiffness and fatigue and how you can practice certain types of exercises to help you recover.

Article: Hospital discharge letter

What is a hospital discharge letter? A hospital discharge letter is a brief medical summary of your hospital admission and the treatment you received whilst in hospital.It is usually written by one of the ward doctors. The Intensive Care doctors will usually write a separate letter to your GP, telling them about how and why you ended up in Intensive Care and your treatment while you were there.You won't normally receive a copy of this, however. What if I don't...

Web Link: Hospital discharge planning-what to expect

Patients should be fully involved in planning for going home and should be kept informed of any changes. Each hospital has its own policy and arrangements for discharging patients. Nevertheless, there are often standards of care and information that must be met for patients and their family members. Going gome from hospital can, and often does, involve a number of different health and social care professionals, and it’s a good idea to know who is involved in arranging your discharge...

Web Link: How to find different community services across Lothian

Community services across Lothian are delivered by four different Community Health Parterships (CHP's). The CHP's are East Lothian, Midlothian, West Lothian and Edinburgh City. These partnerships between health and social care aim to provide comprehensive services in the community based on individual need. The services offered will depend on which region within Lothian that you live in but will include things like physiotherapy, pharmacy, dietetics, mental health services, stopping...

Web Link: Intermediate Care in Lothian

This link will take you to the website of HousingCare.org and their page on Intermediate Care in Edinburgh. What is Intermediate Care? Intermediate or after hospital care services are those provided to elderly people at home (or in a residential setting) for a short period of time. They help people with complex care needs to recuperate, recover or convalesce after an illness or hospital admission and to maximise their independence. The service aims to prevent unnecessary...

Article: Medication

Will I go home on the same medication? You may find that you go home with more or sometimes less medication than you were taking before.It is not unusual for some of your normal medications to be stopped or to have new ones started. How can I find out more about any new medications? Ask your nurse, doctor or the ward pharmacist to explain what your new medications are for, how and when to take them, any side effects to look out for, or if they are likely to interfere with...

Web Link: Medicines explained

This link will take you to an NHS page explaining how 100s of different medications work, what they're for, how to take them and possible side-effects. It's not exhaustive, but we hope you find it helpful. 

Web Link: Rehabilitation hospital (Astley Ainslie, Edinburgh)

This link will take you to NHS Lothian's webpage for the Astley Ainslie Hospital in Edinburgh. They provide specialist in-patient rehabilitation for adults with head injuries, stroke, orthopaedic injuries, limb amputation, and neurological conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS).Patients are usually referred to the Astley Ainslie by a member of the ward-based team. A member of staff may come out from the Astley Ainslie to assess patients' suitability for specialist...