It’s time to be discharged from the hospital because the insurance company has paid all they will allow. Besides you, your discharge planner is trying to vacate another 30 rooms today. They’re polite but don’t really have time to do much except possibly set up physical and occupational therapy at your home or send you to any skilled rehab or nursing home that your insurance pays for. If you need more they may hand you a list or a book of information and counsel “good luck”. Had you known on day one you’re predicament, perhaps you would have been more prepared but you assumed it would all be handled. This is a problem with the system, not the hospital discharge planners. Their goal is to get you out of the hospital as soon as possible at the insistence of the insurance companies. Their recommendations are usually based on insurance company payments, not necessarily where you will receive the best care or the company that provides the best care. You’re playing roulette and hope that you just get lucky. If you’re astute enough you can take action the minute you realize that you have to go somewhere after your hospitalization and make plans. Otherwise you’re at the mercy of the system or you can hire a private care navigator or case manager who can save you hours of research and possibly agony from having choices made for you versus you making the choices.

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About Pamela Wilson

PAMELA D. WILSON, MS, BS/BA, NCG, CSA helps caregivers and aging adults solve caregiving problems and manage caregiving needs through online programs, live support groups, and an extensive caregiving library that includes articles, podcasts, videos, and webinars.

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