We believe that children and young people continue to recover at home after an admission when they are in familiar surroundings. Before we discharge your child so they can go home, we do a lot of planning to make sure you have all the support, information and equipment you need to be able to look after your child safely.
Planning to go home
When your child is admitted to GOSH, we usually have a rough idea of how long they will need to be in hospital and when they can safely go home – this is called their Estimated Discharge Date or EDD. Of course, this can change depending on your child’s individual circumstances, but it gives us a guide as to when we need to have arrangements made and confirmed.
Learning new skills
You may need to learn new skills or how to use new equipment before you go home. We will make sure that you are confident before discharge and fully understand what you need to do and how to raise any concerns or get advice. We realise this can be daunting but promise you that you will become more confident in time – there is always someone on the end of the phone to reassure you.
Arranging support closer to home
If your child is likely to need ongoing care or equipment at home, we will make arrangements with your community team – this may be through your family doctor (GP), Community Children’s Nurses or a Homecare company. We will make sure that they know what support your child will need and that you know how to contact them in case of any problems.
If your child is likely to need to take medicines at home after their admission, we will prescribe a few days’ supply and make sure you have them before you go home. We will also make sure you understand how to give them and what to do if you have any concerns. If your child is likely to need further supplies, you may have to order a repeat prescription from your family doctor (GP).
Depending on the reason for your child’s admission, you may be able to take them home using public transport. Otherwise, we recommend that someone collects you by car – they can get a permit to park on Guilford Street for the day of discharge from our main reception desk.
If your child is eligible, we can also arrange hospital transport home for them. This will usually be in an ambulance car but we can also book special transport if your child is a wheelchair user or has other additional needs.
Visit our Transport pages to learn more about parking permits and non-emergency patient transport.
After visit summary
Everyone is given an After visit summary detailing the reasons for their admission, what happened, what support they will need at home and further plans for treatment or review. This is also made available on MyGOSH once you have registered. We will send a copy to your family doctor (GP) as well as the doctor who originally referred your child to GOSH.
When you get home
Even if your child has rested a lot during their stay at GOSH, they may still be a bit tired for a few days when they get home. Try to limit the number of visitnsportors for the first few days – we know everyone will want to see your child but this can be very tiring.
Try to get back into your normal routine when you get home – go back to regular mealtimes and bedtimes. If you need to do certain things, such as give medicines or change dressings, build these in around your routine as much as possible.
Follow up care
Most children and young people who have stayed at GOSH will have to come back a few weeks later for a check-up with the specialist team. We will try to book this outpatient appointment before you go home, but otherwise, we will make sure you know when to come back and where the appointment will be held.
If your child needs to come back to GOSH before then, for instance, for dressing changes or further tests, we will make sure you have these details before you go home.
The After visit summary gives you the telephone numbers to contact us if you need to once you are at home. Remember, if you are unsure about anything, get in touch.