Before you arrive
1. Read your letter
Your appointment letter will explain anything you need to do before coming into hospital. It is very important that you follow these special instructions otherwise your treatment may be delayed. Please ensure you check the details in your letter carefully so that you go to the right place for your treatment as our trust has two hospital sites—Chelsea and Westminster Hospital and West Middlesex University Hospital. Your letter will tell you exactly where you need to go.
2. Phone if you can’t make it
Your letter gives you an admission date. If there is any problem about coming in, please ring the telephone number on the letter immediately.
If you are having an operation
Before your operation, it is essential that your stomach is empty, and it is necessary that you should have nothing at all to eat for at least six hours before the anaesthetic.
You can drink water up to three hours before the time planned for the operation, and after that you must not take anything at all by mouth. If you have any questions about your surgery please contact us in advance.
- Each hospital will have its own policy and arrangements for discharging patients. Normally, when you arrive in hospital, the professionals in charge of your care will develop a plan for your treatment, including your discharge or transfer. This is usually done within 24 hours of your arrival.
- You will be able to discuss arrangements for your discharge with staff. This will help to ensure that you have everything which is needed for a full recovery when you return home.
our discharge or transfer date will be affected by:
- How quickly your health improves while you are in hospital
- What support you will need after you return home
If you are unhappy about your suggested discharge or transfer date, raise your concerns with the hospital staff.
When you leave hospital you will be given a letter for your GP, providing information about your treatment and future care needs. Give this letter to your GP as soon as possible.
Click on the image below for more information on our local hospitals.
Things to check before leaving hospital
- Has transport home been arranged if necessary?
- Has any property and valuables been returned to you/the patient?
- Has any essential equipment, training or fitting been supplied?
- Has your GP been told that you/ the patient is being discharged?
- Have any medicines been supplied until you are able to see the GP?
- Has information about symptoms to watch out for and where to get help if needed been provided?
- If you are unsure or are worried about something, ask the staff member/nurse who is discharging you.
- If you are given any medication to take home, you will usually be given enough for the following seven days. You will also be given a letter to give to your GP, which includes information about your medication.
- If you need to keep taking your medication, make sure you arrange to get a repeat prescription from your GP before your hospital supply runs out. Some surgeries require up to 48 hours working-day notice for repeat prescriptions.