Hospital Discharge: Why You May Want to Consider Getting Help

Nurse and senior in hospitalA trip to the hospital can be a really intimidating event both for the patient and their family.  Hearing the word “discharge” is a much-anticipated moment, but it is also a time to think about what will happen when your family member is back home. We are often so focused on getting mom or dad home that we don’t realise the work and stress that is involved if extra help will be needed until life is back to normal.

Hospital discharge to the home needs to be a safe transition.  Your hospital will have excellent staff helping with this transition – usually social workers, discharge nurses and coordinators.  They will insist that advanced preparation and coordination is required by the family before your loved one is discharged. It is vital that medication is well organized, and follow-up appointments are booked. At-home recovery instructions will need to be in place as well as transportation and in-home safety equipment.

Having an effective discharge plan is critical for a safe and successful recovery and to avoid readmission. In fact, the founder of Retire-At-Home Irene Martin, started this business over twenty years ago for this very reason.  As a nurse at the hospital she saw seniors being readmitted again and again because families were not properly equipped to help with the recovery.  The hospital staff who assists you with the discharge plan, will let you know if you qualify for support from CCAC (Community Care Access Centre).  In Toronto, you can learn more about CCAC by calling 310-2222 or visit their website at  Once you know the level of support available from CCAC, you will have a better idea of what additional assistance might be required.

Here are some things you might need help with:

  • bathing, dressing, grooming, and getting in and out of bed
  • meal preparation
  • light housework
  • laundry and changing bed linens
  • changing incontinence briefs
  • help with post-operative exercises

The home may not be properly equipped for the safety of your loved one during the period of time when they are most vulnerable.  We highly recommend The Total Access Centre, a Toronto company that will provide you with a no-obligation total home safety check that identifies potential hazards and suggests solutions.

Common items needed for discharge might include:

  • Bathroom grab bars
  • Wheelchair ramps
  • Stair lifts
  • Bed lifts
  • Reclining beds
  • Canes and or walkers


How We Can Help

Hospital Discharge

Retire-At-Home Services in Toronto will help you through every step of the process.  Our Client Care Manager, who is a Registered Nurse, will take the time to understand your specific and unique needs.  Our customized care includes (but is not limited to) the following:


  1. Coming to meet you in the hospital before your discharge
  2. Attending the discharge meeting to take notes and be sure about your home care needs
  3. Asking the discharge nurse questions to clarify any issues
  4. Helping you get home
  5. Having our Personal Support Workers (PSWs) ready at your house to make your arrival and transition back home as smooth as possible
  6. On-going consultation with our Client Care Manager to ensure we are providing you with the best home care
  7. Personal Care
  8. Home Support


We all know that there’s no place like home.  If you have a family member who will is going to be discharged from the hospital, call the experts at Retire-At-Home Services in Toronto to ensure the transition home is safe and healthy.