Discharge planning: communication, education and patient participation

Br J Nurs. 2007 Jul 26-Aug 8;16(14):882-6. doi: 10.12968/bjon.2007.16.14.24328.


For the most part, discharge from hospital is routine and uneventful. However, for a percentage of people, discharge from acute care requires careful planning to ensure continuity of care. This is particularly the case with older patients who have complex medical needs. This literature review reveals that the essential elements for discharge planning are: communication, coordination, education, patient participation and collaboration between medical personnel. Outcomes measures of successful discharge planning include patient satisfaction and quality of life. Smooth and efficient coordination of this process reduces stress and anxiety for the patient, family, nurse, doctor, hospital and community services.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety / prevention & control
  • Anxiety / psychology
  • Communication*
  • Continuity of Patient Care
  • Cooperative Behavior
  • Efficiency, Organizational
  • Humans
  • Interprofessional Relations
  • Needs Assessment
  • Nurse's Role
  • Nursing Assessment
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Patient Care Planning / organization & administration*
  • Patient Care Team / organization & administration
  • Patient Discharge*
  • Patient Education as Topic / organization & administration*
  • Patient Participation / methods*
  • Patient Participation / psychology
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Quality of Life
  • Stress, Psychological / prevention & control
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology
  • Total Quality Management