How to Prepare For a Hospital Stay

by Paul Konrardy

If you know a hospital stay is coming up, do some advance planning so your stay there and return home will be as stress-free as possible.

WHN TIP – Make It Easier: Download our What to Take to the Hospital Checklist

Before You Leave

Gather the information the hospital may need. Even if it’s an outpatient visit, there will be questions to answer and forms to complete.

Coordinate assistance during your stay, when you are leaving and once you’re home.

  • Will you need someone to drive you to and from the hospital?
  • If you’re having a procedure, is someone available to stay with you and take notes?
  • When you return home, will you need assistance in the house? Will you be able to drive?

WHN Expert TIP – Visit Centers Now: “If you’re having hip surgery and you know you have to stay in a rehab facility for a few weeks after your hospital stay, you may want to go visit those rehab centers (before your surgery) to make a good, informed choice about what your care is going to look like after you’ve had your acute care stay in a hospital.” Judy Pechacek, R.N., M.S., and vice president of Patient Care at Fairview Southdale

If you’re staying overnight or longer, ask what items you should or shouldn’t bring.

  • Will cell phones be allowed in your room?
  • Can you wear your own PJs or is it strictly hospital-issue?

WHN TIP – No Baubles, Bangles or Beads, Please! Leave your jewelry at home since it may need to be removed for any procedures, and that ups the chances it could be lost.

For more tips for before, during and after, read Going to the Hospital.

Photo Credit: Pexels

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