Hospital Discharge, Part I

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Sorry to be rude, but it’s time for you to go home…

Here are some key questions to ask the doctor, social worker or care manager when discussing nursing home care:

  • What are the goals of care that we should hope for?
  • What placement options are available?
  • How well will each option achieve the desired goal?
  • Are there risks associated with any of the options?
  • Who will provide the medical care to my relative?
  • How long will they stay at the facility?
  • What are the costs and will insurance cover any of them?

Once you find a facility that looks good the next step is to understand its staffing, philosophy and user friendliness.  Questions you might ask might include:

  • How far is it away, and will family and friends be inclined to visit?
  • Is there a religious or other philosophy that is acceptable?
  • Are there rules that will keep the patient from doing things they value?
  • What is known about the institution’s track record with quality of care?
  • Will my hospital doctor talk directly to their doctor in order to minimize confusion at the time of transfer?