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Leaving hospital - what you need to know

Patients and visitors

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The staff looking you after will make sure you have the support and advice you need when you are ready to leave hospital. This is sometimes described as your 'discharge'.

For example, they may need to ask you about your home, how many stairs you have to climb and whether you have relatives or friends who will be able to support you during your recovery.

They will also ask you about any help or support which you currently receive from social services or community health professionals, such as district nurses. They will arrange any referrals for you.

If you need a certificate to claim sickness benefit, please let your nurse or ward administrator know as soon as possible.

Our aim is to make sure all the services you need are in place before you leave hospital, including any extra help you may need as a result of your hospital stay.


We ask that you arrange for your own transport if possible.

If you need to use it, you can find details of our patient transport service on the help with travel page.


If you have asked staff to take any valuables for safe keeping, don't forget to collect these from the cashier's office when you leave.

What if you are unable to return home?

The Simon Patient Hotel in Gassiot House, opposite Lambeth Wing at St Thomas' is available for patients who are unable to return home when they are well enough to leave the ward. This may be because they are recovering from surgery or for other domestic reasons.

If staff feel it would be appropriate for you to stay in the Simon Patient Hotel, they will arrange this for you. There is no charge for NHS patients.

Relatives and friends may also stay in either Counting House Lodge at Guy’s or Gassiot Lodge at St Thomas'.

Continuing spiritual care

The spiritual care team can arrange support for you after you leave hospital if that is what you would like. Please ask your nurse to contact them before you leave.