When patients discharge... transportation

  1. 0
    When patients are discharged from inpatient hospital care where you work, what happens when they leave the floor? Do they go down to the pickup area with a nurse/staff member/volunteer who waits until they are picked up, or are they dropped off in front of the lobby to wait alone for a ride?
  2. Poll: What happens at discharge in your current hospital?

    • View Results
  3. Get our hottest nursing topics delivered to your inbox.

  4. 3,225 Visits
    Find Similar Topics
  5. 17 Comments so far...

  6. 0
    Also many leave with family, no waiting but a staff member usually a tech or CNA takes them down in the wheelchair.
  7. 0
    My hospital has a patient transport service. Page the guys in the blue shirts and they arrive with their wheelchair carts to take your patient to the curb, help them to the car.
    I love patient transport. When I was a CNA, I would get so behind in my work if there were lots of discharges.
  8. 0
    Now they just stay in the room until a ride arrives and a volunteer wheels them down to the car. However our hospital is above capacity so we are starting a new process shortly to empty rooms quicker. We will have a discharge lounge where patients can wait for rides. It will just be a room with a bunch of chairs. An RN will staff it.
  9. 2
    I worked in a pediatric hospital. They left with their parents or guardians. The vast majority of time, no one escorted them off the floor. If it was a baby, they left in their stroller or carseat. If it was a walkie talkie kid, they walked out. If it was a child who baseline required a wheelchair, they left in their own wheelchair. If they were going to rehab, they went in an ambulance. Pediatrics is a whole 'nother world though... we brought kids down to the morgue in their strollers sometimes. A friend who works in an adult hospital didn't believe me when I told her that our patients were allowed to walk to and from tests, to and from the floor, etc.

    @ bjaeram... that seems like quite a waste of resources to have an RN staff this room. Why do discharged patients need an RN watching them? They're discharged, so presumably they do not need a nurse anymore.
    hiddencatRN and poppycat like this.
  10. 0
    We have an awesome facility where I work. Once discharge is complete, and the patient has all their papers etc, patient is collected by discharge service and taken to a waiting room near the main entrance, where they wait until their ride comes to get them. The waiting room has a nurse to watch the patients. It's good because sometimes there is a delay until their transport can get there, so it frees up the bed.

    Only works for patients who can walk/get in a chair, though.
    Last edit by JDZ344 on May 14, '14
  11. 0
    Quote from bjaeram
    Now they just stay in the room until a ride arrives and a volunteer wheels them down to the car. However our hospital is above capacity so we are starting a new process shortly to empty rooms quicker. We will have a discharge lounge where patients can wait for rides. It will just be a room with a bunch of chairs. An RN will staff it.
    That sounds like what we have here. And regarding the RN staffing it- we are required to have one present in case of emergency or patient questions about meds / follow up that they may think of while sitting waiting.
  12. 0
    Quote from KelRN215
    I worked in a pediatric hospital. They left with their parents or guardians. The vast majority of time, no one escorted them off the floor. If it was a baby, they left in their stroller or carseat. If it was a walkie talkie kid, they walked out. If it was a child who baseline required a wheelchair, they left in their own wheelchair. If they were going to rehab, they went in an ambulance. Pediatrics is a whole 'nother world though... we brought kids down to the morgue in their strollers sometimes. A friend who works in an adult hospital didn't believe me when I told her that our patients were allowed to walk to and from tests, to and from the floor, etc.

    @ bjaeram... that seems like quite a waste of resources to have an RN staff this room. Why do discharged patients need an RN watching them? They're discharged, so presumably they do not need a nurse anymore.
    The hospital I used to work for would make the patient stay in their room until their ride was actually on the hospital grounds and then patient transport would be called to take them down or a tech would take them down. Sometimes they went down in a wheelchair, but sometimes they would walk. They could never go down alone though or even with family. A tech or nurse had to be with them and see them into the car.

    I can see how having a room staffed by a nurse would be more cost efficient than the process I just mentioned though. Sometimes a patient could be waiting in their room for several hours. So, having somewhere to send them where they're still being supervised by a nurse would be beneficial...to administration at least..so they could free up beds. It would have to be an RN though because an assistant has to work under the supervision of an RN so they couldn't use an aide to staff the room alone. Like you said, "presumably" they don't need care anymore, but the minute someone has a heart attack or falls down while they're still on hospital grounds....there will be a lawsuit. A lawsuit is way more expensive than an RN salary....especially when they're increasing productivity so much by freeing up all those beds.
  13. 0
    Our patients stay in their rooms until someone arrives to pick them up. We escort them to their vehicle. This has been the case everywhere I have worked. The point is to avoid a lawsuit if a discharged patient should "fall" or something on their way out. Occassionally we have a problem of finding someone to actually come and get the patient, and that takes up a bed that we might need. I have worked in hospitals where we had to pay a taxi to take someone home, too.
  14. 0
    We have a transit lounge. It is staffed by an RN and a porter. They take people waiting on ambulances to other facilities if it is sub acute eg rehab. Also if they are waiting on meds from pharmacy as our pharmacy is epically slow. They also have pts that are waiting for return transport to their nursing home post clinic appt. They take full care pts that can lie on a ED trolley for 2 hours eg no pressure areas.

    It is great to clear the beds and get the elective surgery pts in that are waiting in recovery or those that are in ED esp as we are at 4 hour ED stay targets.

    Our transit lounge is situated next to a 15 min pick up area. So family come in get medication education from pharmacy and go. No parking ticket or having to circle for a parking spot in our tiny car park.


Top