When a child with medical complexity is prepared to be discharged, the hospital keeps special measures in mind. A particular process is vital to follow with guidance, expertise, and acquaintance with such children. The safety and effectiveness of child care at home and its long-term sustainability are the main priorities for both the child and the family. Every child is unique and has different problems.
When a child with medical complexities goes home, some healthcare teams may regularly be involved in the discharge planning. Thus, they may have frequent discharges because of patient volume variations. When planning a discharge, the essential thing is the close collaboration with the family and the healthcare team. Coordination is critical.
Principles of discharge with complex care needs at home are:
Engaging the family in the child’s care from the beginning is essential. It helps them to have a stronger bond with the child. It will help the family be mentally prepared to handle the responsibilities and comfort the child’s care.
Involve Community Partners:
Involve community partners early. At the start, such children require a certain level of care about which the parents and people involved in the health community know about. A whole team is needed to help discharge planning and form a team to facilitate the transition.
Process of Discharge:
A discharge process is fundamental. Many Healthcare Providers are involved in the discharge process. Many people gather up and decide whether the child is capable of being discharged or not.
A child with medical complexity is a child that needs total care at all times. It is imperative to determine if the family is willing to take care of the baby or not. The family needs to participate in their child’s daily care actively. No matter how tiring it maybe. You may be planning to take the baby or not at times. You may think you are mentally prepared, but you are not. You may want to take help and book an appointment with the Oakbrook Peds for the benefit of your child.
It is essential to discuss discharge goals: medical stability and family competency. The family and the caretakers must be mentally prepared to take care of the patient and know every minor detail.
Before a discharge, a few fundamental questions are about the child’s mental stability: Whether or not a child is mentally stable, and what the discharge goals are for the doctors regarding the patients’ progress. Most children are not mentally tough to leave the hospital premises. Therefore they may stress themselves out after changing their environment and might show signs of discomfort or suppression. Ultimate discharge goals are goals that the entire family is ready to take care of the baby and train themselves before leaving. Further questions that do arrive are:
- Can the family/ caretaker properly take care of the child?
- Are they strong enough to take appropriate actions in case of an emergency?
- Are they familiar with the medication and the dosage?
- When and at what time should the medicine be given?
- Do they know Alternatives to every medicine?
- Do they understand their child’s language, signs, and needs?
Before the discharge, the caretaker or the parents must have proper training. They need to understand what it is like to be with a child with medical complexities for Non-Stop 24 to 48 hours. They need to stay in the hospital and determine their child.
After two or three days, the hospital staff should analyze or come up with an accurate result: whether the child can go home or are the parents capable of looking after them.
Necessary equipment and supplies:
A few equipment and supplies are very important. It is vital to know that there are enough equipment supplies at home that the child needs. A few essential questions that the parents need to answer are:
- Can the equipment cost properly be covered?
- Is there a proper space for the child?
- Where should the ordering of supplies be ordered?
- Who to reach out to in case of any emergency or equipment failure?
All these questions are to be asked from the parents before they leave and provide them with a valid contact number or equipment for the child.
Medication and their timing:
Before the discharge, it is essential to have a small test of the parents or the caretaker. When and what medicine does the child need? When the medication dosage is to be given, whether am or pm, ask them after every question precisely. For example, 6mg versus 6.5mg such nominal points also matter.
- Is the medication appropriate?
- Where will the medications be stored?
- Also, do the parents know about the medication names?
- If a specific medication is not available, what alternatives are for that medicine?
- At what temperature shall each medicine be stored?
- Is a refrigerator available at home or not?
Surrounding at home:
Environment is essential. It is significant for the hospital staff to first have a visit at home and then analyze whether the surrounding is capable for the child to go home.
- Can the parents or the caretaker give the child a happy environment?
- Do they have a functional phone that is available 24/7?
- Can they meet the child’s requirements?
- Can the child be stress-free and safe at home?
Medical support and doctors:
It is imperative that the parents or caretakers know which pediatrician to call for the child in an emergency. You may also search for A2Z Pediatrics Bolingbrook IL in case of not finding anyone at the end moment. However,the family must know before the discharge who to call in case of any life-threatening problem or fragility.
One of the essential factors is Financial Resources. Children with medical complexity often need proper resources,and it is not easy to meet with them. In addition to a loss of family income, parents often have to pay for expenses not part of any insurance plan or government programs. If God forbid, any such thing happens to the parents have enough equity to Surplus it.
It is important to ask the following questions before discharge.
- Does the family have appropriate transportation to travel in case of any emergency?
- Do they know how to transfer their child from their home to the nearest hospital with suitable equipment that the child needs?
- How will the child safely move from home to the hospital?
After all of these, the last step is a proper discharge plan. A discharge plan is usually supposed to happen 24 hours before hand. The nursing staff or the doctors must see the house to know if the patient will stay stable. Is the child is going to be comfortable at home or not? Documents must be updated and be ready a day before the discharge, so the patient does not have to wait.
When all these steps are covered, it is simply the time for the discharge finalization, but before that, the subsequent follow-up must be in the schedule.
The child must be taken with care first at home, and then the caretakers must come home and talk to the parents for the last time and keep a schedule to visit every day for the first two to three weeks, to have an idea if the child is doing fine or not.