What plans should I make for discharge from hospital?

Adelaide Cardiothoracic > Patient Information > Preparing for Surgery > What plans should I make for discharge from hospital?

What plans should I make for discharge from hospital?

Planning for discharge begins before your heart surgery.

The following is a list of some important tips when planning for your discharge from the hospital:

  • Most patients are ready to be discharged between five and seven days after surgery.

  • Plan to be off work for between four and 12 weeks, depending on the type of work you do. Look into any sickness benefits that may be available to provide you with support during your recovery.
  • You will not be able to drive for four to six weeks after surgery. You will need to arrange for someone to be available to help you get to and from your appointments.

  • Although you will be able to care for yourself by the time you are ready to go home, you may like to arrange for help at home for daily activities such as cleaning, groceries, laundry, and gardening for six to eight weeks. Nursing and home care services are not routinely supplied but are available if necessary.

  • If you are not going to be able to manage at home by the time you are ready to leave hospital, rehabilitation can be arranged for you.

  • A Discharge Planning Coordinator can be available to you and your family before your surgery and during your hospital stay. The Coordinator specialises in dealing with issues such as decision-making, financial assistance programs, discharge planning, rehabilitation, home care, and respite care.

Country and Interstate Patients

If you are a country or interstate patient, you will need to have accommodation close to the hospital available to you from the time of discharge. You will need to stay in Adelaide until day 10 after surgery, OR until a follow-up visit with your surgeon, before being able to return home. This is to minimise the chances of complications occurring after you have left Adelaide and maybe some distance from help.

You will need to pay for your own accommodation while staying in Adelaide as accommodation is not provided by the hospital.

For Country South Australian Patients:

You may be eligible for a subsidy towards your travel and accommodation through the Patient Assistance Transport Scheme (PATS South Australia) if you are a permanent resident of South Australia and live more than 100 kilometres from the hospital. Please ask your local doctor or all your local PATS office, or check online whether you are eligible using the Patient Assistance Transport Scheme Online Calculator.

For Interstate Patients:

Refer to the following for your state: