It is understandable to not enjoy being admitted to the hospital and want to get out as soon as possible. However, you and other Louisiana residents should understand the potential complications of being discharged before you are ready.

When your doctor says you are being released from the hospital, it is normal to trust his or her word that you have recovered enough to go home. U.S. News & World Report points out that many patients are discharged despite having one or more abnormalities in their vital signs, which can make it likely for a patient to be readmitted to the hospital within 30 days or even die.

How can you reduce your chances of being released too soon? Some important clues that you are not ready to go home include not being able to get in and out of bed without assistance; being unable to keep food and drink down; an inability to go to the bathroom; not being able to self-administer your medications; or having abnormalities in your vitals when the doctor or nurse checks them. Also, you might not be ready for discharge if you have uncontrolled pain or new symptoms that your doctor has not addressed.

It is important to be educated and proactive during your stay in the hospital and as you are preparing to go home, as well as to have a trusted person with you as your health advocate if you are temporarily unable to make your own health care decisions or take care of yourself. This information is not meant to replace the advice of a lawyer.