After spending weeks in the hospital, you may be delighted by the news of your discharge. However, sometimes going home can cause more harm than you may think.
Hospitals may face pressure to free up beds for other patients and discharge you quickly, but it can significantly affect your health. Premature discharge is unsafe and not in your best interests. If the hospital staff was negligent towards their duties, you can hire a medical malpractice lawyer and sue them for causing harm to you.
Why are patients discharged prematurely?
There can be various reasons why a hospital may decide to discharge you earlier than they should. Some of the reasons may include the following.
- Wrong diagnosis of the illness or injury.
- Poor communication between the nurses, doctors, and physicians (or other staff).
- Inadequate or rushed assessment of the patient.
- Staff negligence.
- Improper tests.
All the reasons point in one direction: medical malpractice and negligence. Human negligence is the biggest reason why a person falls victim to injuries. Sending patients home when they are not ready and healthy enough can lead to their death.
Signs you were discharged too early
- You cannot get in or out of bed.
A healthy and able body should have no problem getting in or out of the body without another person’s help. If you cannot do that on your own, you were probably discharged at the wrong time unless you have sufficient help available at home.
- You need support and treatment that is not available at home.
If you still need equipment support and treatment, such as IV medication, that cannot be done at home; you should probably not have come home. Ask yourself whether you or your caretaker can manage certain requirements at home. If not, then you have the answer.
- Your home does not provide what you need to get better.
Before discharging you, the hospital should make sure that you no longer need the special facilities of the hospital, which would not be available at home. For example, if you have recently had knee surgery and cannot walk up a flight of stairs, you need to arrange for a bed downstairs before returning home.
Preventing premature discharge
If you suspect a premature discharge, you may take the following steps.
- Speak with your healthcare professional or your attending physician to discuss your condition.
- Request your discharge rights from the hospital.
- Raise your voice if you are still in pain and cannot care for yourself alone.
If you feel like your needs are not being met, you are being ignored and discharged from the hospital sooner than the standard level of care, you may be a victim of medical malpractice. To determine if you have a claim, contact an attorney today.