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Reducing the risk of infection
People who are unwell are more at risk of acquiring infections and even minor infections can be very serious. Hand hygiene is the most important way to prevent the spread of infection. All members of the healthcare team should wash their hands before examining or treating you. If you have any doubts please do not be afraid to politely remind them to do this. All patients and visitors are reminded to use antiseptic gel before and after visiting clinics or wards. Gel dispensers are situated throughout our hospitals.
If you have any questions or concerns about the prevention of infection or MRSA please speak to a member of staff. If you have questions about the general cleanliness of your area, speak to ward staff who will explain the procedures and precautions we have in place to manage and prevent the risk of infections in our hospitals.
If you are coming for an inpatient stay you will be given a wristband with your name on it. You should wear this at all times so that you will always be quickly identified. If it is missing or if any details are incorrect please tell a nurse straight away. If you have particular care needs these may be highlighted to all staff involved in your care by a coloured wristband. This will all be explained to you during your stay.
Your diagnosis, medical tests and treatment plan
To understand your medical condition, the tests you are undergoing and your treatment
plan, you may find it helpful to know:
• The name of the Consultant you have been admitted under.
• How long your treatment is expected to be.
• How you might feel.
Please read all the medical forms you are given to sign and if you don’t understand any of them ask the doctor to explain further before giving your consent.
Each time you visit hospital it is important that the healthcare team caring for you know of any medication that you are already taking. If you have a planned appointment you will be asked to bring your medication with you. If you come into hospital as an emergency, a carer or your GP might be asked to provide details. Remember to tell us about any herbal remedies and over the counter medications. It is also important for you to understand any new medication you have been given.
You might want to ask:
• What medication you should be taking and when you should be given it.
• What the medication is for.
• Are there any important side effects you should look out for.
If you have any allergies make sure the doctors and nurses are aware of them. Remember, if you have any concerns about your medication please tell us as soon as possible.
Your family and friends
You may wish to ask a relative or good friend to come with you to your outpatient appointment or to be available when your doctor visits you on the ward. This person can help ensure that all of your concerns are raised and can help you remember all of the information that you have been given.
When you leave hospital (discharge)
If you are admitted as an inpatient your discharge will have been planned with you throughout your stay, including any help you might need with mobility, meals and follow up medical or nursing care.
If further care has been arranged for you please make sure you know where these services are and when they are to start.
Your nurse or pharmacist will tell you about any medications you may need to take home with you.
Make sure you know how to use any medical equipment you are sent home with. If you have any concerns please discuss them with a member of your healthcare team.
For further information
If you have any questions or need further information, please speak to one of the healthcare professionals looking after you.
Your safety is our priority
Thousands of patients are treated in Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals every year and all our staff work hard to ensure that each and every visit is as safe as possible. Patients are at the very heart of our healthcare team and we actively encourage you and / or your carers to become involved and informed members of the team, helping us to make sure your hospital visit is as safe as possible.
If you have any concerns or questions during your hospital appointment or inpatient stay please speak to a member of staff. If something doesn’t seem quite right or is troubling you, please, Just Ask.
This leaflet is intended for patients receiving care in Brighton and Hove or Haywards Heath.
The information in this leaflet is for guidance purposes only and is in no way intended to replace professional clinical advice by a qualified practitioner.