Granpa: Discharged from Public Hospital - No One Able To Pick Him Up.

My Granpa about to be discharged from the public hospital and I have two "perfect" situations here (please bear with me as I try to be as brief as I can).

  • I will be interstate on his discharge day and will be back just the day after; there's no one else able to pick him up.
    Q: Has anyone had this sort of circumstance? is it too much of an ask if I politely request if he can stay for another night in the ward?

  • Both lifts in his apartment are currently under maintenance and expected to be fixed mid next week and he is not fit to walk up 5 flight of stairs going to his unit.
    Q: Ambulance is not an option here from my understanding; is there any other option/s to get him up there to his unit?



  • +27 votes

    there's no one else able to pick him up.

    There is literally none of your family or your grandpa's friends available and they (parents?) expect you, who is interstate, to pick him up? Do you have a girlfriend or wife who could assist and make it up to her with sweet loving when you get back?

    You could organize a special needs taxi that can assist him in and out of the car with his luggage and perhaps call the caretaker/manager of the apartment to assist the old-timer getting up the stairs? Or maybe even the taxi driver can do this.

    • Air-tasker + Uber or Taxi. I've literally heard of someone using Airtasker to collect them from hospital after an eye-procedure, because the hospital refused to discharge them without someone there to pick them up.

      • because the hospital refused to discharge them without someone there to pick them up.

        They must have experienced a hard ass nurse unit manager. They can be very firm. They can't refuse to discharge tho.

        • They would have to discharge against medical advice.

        • They must have experienced a hard ass nurse

          Which hospital? I'm feeling very ill all of a sudden!!

        • It's not uncommon at all. Even after day surgery they normally won't 'let you' leave without someone else present.

          • @macrocephalic: They "say" that but they cannot prevent you from leaving. It's not prison. They're just doing everything possible to convince you not to leave, and if you do, reduce any liability if anything occurs afterwards.

            The only exception is if you lack capacity. Severe dementia, serious brain injury etc.

        • I've had a private hospital that tells me they'd keep me overnight for a day surgery if there's no one to pick me up. The nurse literally handed me over to the person who was picking me up and took me to his car.

          I've also been someone else's pick up for a day surgery from a public hospital and they're already outside the hospital building by the time I got there. They basically let him leave after he's called me to say he's ready to go.

          I've also been at a day surgery at a public hospital and was picked up by someone from the recovery room.

          So the experience can very well vary.

        • What an utterly stupid comment.

      • I think I visited ‘Air-tasker’ before out of curiosity (or similar website).
        There was one person requesting 2 dozen Krispy Kreme donuts delivered to an address (with really urgent sounding words), thought that was funny. Other’s were the more common ‘help build IKEA furniture’ jobs.

      • because the hospital refused to discharge them without someone there to pick them up.

        So will this clause work for OP?

        • No, it depends on the condition of the patient and the nature of the surgery. The case I read about made the patient unable to see (clearly or at all, I can't remember which), so they needed someone to guide the patient.

    • Why is OP giving Gramdpa sweet loving?

      • I asked OP if he was married or had a girlfriend who could help out his Grandpa while he was interstate.

        I then implied that for helping OP out with this predicament, he would infer onto said wife, girlfriend or for that matter partner, some sweet loving as a reward for services rendered.

        I have never had a complaint or dissatisfied significant other with this method of reward, especially when I am singing it at the same time.

        • I don't consider myself a ladies man.

          I believe if I asked a woman to 'help out' gramps because I am out of town, and that I will give them sex in return, well I just don't know what would happen. But I am sure my face would be left red.


            @This Guy: Then you're dating the wrong kind of woman.Most of the ones I know would do it out of the goodness of their heart ..and I wouldn't even be expected to put out😜 Srsly though, what kind of person would leave Gramp stranded ,whether there's sex in it for them or not?

            • @DisabledUser102420:

              Most of the ones I know would do it out of the goodness of their heart

              Did someone say a lady on the streets but a freak in the sheets?

            • @DisabledUser102420: I am more than happy for gramps to find his own way. If he can't find a woman to 'help out' for free, he can hire one. Just because he is old doesn't me he can't call a cab.

              I don't understand this concept of sharing a partner. Is it because he is on a pension and has no savings? Or is your grandfather that repulsive that he can't get service?

              Srsly though, what kind of person would leave Gramp stranded ,whether there's sex in it for them or not?

              I am sorry, I am just not open minded enough. Good for you and hey aj. To me this would be an act of desperation, and I don't think I am ever going to be desperate enough to send a partner for sweet loving with pops to guarantee I get I get 'helped out' on return.

              I am not trying to discourage your lifestyle, as you are all consenting adults, but I thought both wife sharing and inter generational family relationships were taboo?


                @This Guy: You misread what I wrote : the sweet loving is coming from the person asking the favour ( in this case Tempura) , not from Gramps. Poor Gramp, just out of hospital and expected to perform….Nah! and what would Nan think?!

                Although, to be completely honest, if I had to coax a favour out of my wife , I usually just give her an IOU, which she can use for whatever she wants, no questions asked. That's also how we resolve most of our arguments at home.

                She mostly uses those IOUs to see how far she can push me. The last one I gave her was used to get me to serenade her on our rooftop while she ate her favourite cookies and cream ice-cream and watched the sunrise. The one before that was used to get me to do a fully choreographed dance and striptease to under my umbrella by Rihanna. She laughed so hard that she fell off the bed and banged her knee (and still couldn't stop laughing). Now she can't listen to that song without ending up in a fit of giggles. So joke's on her.

          • @This Guy: I feel it is my duty, as one male to another, to encourage you to try this course of action the next time an event similar to this occurs in your life.

    • i rarely do interstate travel but I really needed to take this one so yeah it's just that perfect moment that the hospital decided to discharge him on the same day. and not to mention with both lifts to his apartment getting fixed too. Granma is home but I can't expect her to go to the hospital then take public transport and she'll also have the same issue taking him up by herself.

        • I find that hard to believe

          i honestly was looking for a mere feedback to my questions but rather feel judged at the moment.

          • +27 votes

            @tempura: I don't think Spackbace is judging you in any of his comments after re-reading what he has said, and neither am I for that matter.

            What I am interpreting from Spackbace is a frustration; how does someone get into this circumstance where they have to drop everything they are doing and travel a long distance to assist? Why are no other family or friends who are closer able to help?

            When I read your post I personally felt frustrated on your behalf for having to be in this situation. Without wanting to probe you further is it a cultural family thing where it's expected of you or something?

          • @tempura: Don't - if I'm reading Spackbace's comments correctly, it's more just worry about the dangers of having two (very?) elderly individuals with no support network, even friends, other than a grandchild who'll naturally take holidays, be interstate, out of the country, etc - and also that this is incredibly unfair for you too.

          • @tempura: I don't think he's judging you. If anything, he's judging your parents. They're the direct descendants that would usually be in charge here

            • @outlander: OP hasn't told us why he's gone interstate ? for work- then take carer's leave come back early, ?for holiday then come back earlier.

              OP also should be getting carer's help etc. If OP does llook after his grandpa- that's great but what happens when he goes to work, etc who looks after him?

              Sounds like his grandpa was sick and went to hospital- instead of being beside him, he decided that it's the perfect chance to go on a holiday..anyway

            • @outlander: OP obviously would have considered his parents if circumstances allowed. We don't know about OP's family state. For example, there are people whose parents (one or both) would have passed away before their grandparents.

            • @outlander: OPs parents could be dead.

              OP could be batman…

      • Granma is home but I can't expect her to go to the hospital then take public transport and she'll also have the same issue taking him up by herself.

        Uber or Taxi. Literally what this is for. You can even arrange it for them.

        As for the stairs, can't help you there. Airtasker as I mentioned before.

        Beds in hospitals are in very short supply. It'd be incredibly inconsiderate to be taking up one if you don't need to.

  • AirTasker

  • Airtasker

  • As I said above, call one of the Sydney taxi companies and ask if they are able to assist your Grandpa in getting from the hospital to his apartment, assisting him up the stairs. No harm in asking and this might be the cheapest and best solution as I am sure your Grandpa would prefer sleeping in his own bed.

  • The hospital has to prioritise based on medical need, if there is literally no-one else that is in greater need of the bed for a night he might get to stay but if you are in a metro area public hospital your chances are probably 0.

    There should be a social worker at the hospital who can give you the contact details of private patient transport organisations, and private nurses. You will have to pay out of pocket for these if he doesn’t have private health (and may have to pay a gap even if he does) but you can pay for them.

    Or you could consider getting him an accessible room at a hotel for a night or two, if he could make it into a taxi, and into a ground floor hotel room.

    • Hotel sounds a good one - but his own bed would probably be best.

      Patient transport seems like the best idea so far - above uberair, which is above airtasker.

  • Any friends that are able to help?

  • +11 votes

    2 things:

    1. This recently happened with my mother in law (who lives in a different state to us). The hospital were forced to keep her overnight until someone could pick her up the next day.
    2. Please stop italicising random words in your posts and comments. It doesn't even make sense in the way jv does it. Stop trying to make fetch happen.
    • Are my italics non-sensical sw00p?

    • The hospital can’t be forced to keep a person.
      We can arrange for transport to take them if they are fit enough to go home as long as they have the keys to go home.
      Abusing the hospital bed because family decide to leave when a loved one is in hospital is something that happens far too often in hospitals, leaves many people in ED needing beds in the ward. It’s a horrible mentality that some relatives have.

  • has anyone had this sort of circumstance? is it too much of an ask if I politely request if he can stay for another night in the ward?

    Absolutely not. Even if they somehow oblige, imagine your grandpa not being admitted due to bed shortage just to find out a bed could have been free but someone else found it too difficult to pick up their elderly.

    It would be very irresponsible to pass the responsibility of caring for your grandpa onto the taxpayer at hospital rates.

    ambulance is not an option here from my understanding; is there any other option/s to get him up there to his unit?

    Put him up in a different accommodation at your expense and seek compensation from responsible party for lift not working.

    • Are you really going to recommend the cost of booking a hotel for the night, and a taxi from the hospital to the hotel, then the paperwork involved with ascertaining compensation by the apartment manager, when OP could simply make a call and see if the Taxi company have a guy who is able to assist the old man up the stairs when he gets dropped off?

      If he is alone by himself, as it sounds no other family is able to assist, sleeping in his own home would be a lot better and not to mention way more cost-efficient for OP.

      Are we not living in Australia where people are happy to help an old person up some stairs?

      • We are living in Australia where if a taxi driver helps an old man but ends up causing him to fall a flight of stairs, it's sad faces all around. It's hardly any better if the taxi driver were to fall. Or both.

        I'd help but I would be covered under the Good Samaritan Law. It may not be so clear cut for the taxi driver as they are a fee for service and what transpires between the driver and the old man can be quite entangling.

        Aging and elevators have entirely predictable problems for which individuals are capable of planning ahead. If one is frail and chooses to live in an apartment, it would be foolish to not have some level of contingency for ill health of both the individual and the elevator.

        • Your points are all valid, I just hate the fact that we as a society are now more concerned about possible legal action if something should go amiss, instead of the helping hand mentality and willingness to assist those in need I see from my parent's generation.

          It is still alive and kicking in the more rural and country areas of the nation which is nice to know.

          • @hey aj: A robust and mature legal system works both ways.

            On one hand, we can seek compensation for damages and by that same hand, someone else can seek compensation against us.

    • imagine your grandpa not being admitted due to bed shortage

      They'd still get admitted. They'd just be sitting in a chair in the ED waiting room for 36 hrs not getting the care they need and developing DVT/PE

      • Phew.

        Here I thought they were going to have to wait in a non-ED certified chair.

        • We have the capacity to flex up and certify chairs as needed in our ED. I imagine we'd even be able to certify ward chairs if they were delivered to our department in a policy compliant manner.

  • Ask the social worker at the hospital if they can help you. They are quite helpfull and will offer you some good options like a volunteer to help you for the transfer and also give a hand around the house too. You can also enquire with the service desk or the nurse looking after your gra.ndpa who will be more than happy to help you find a solution.good luck.

  • There had to be someone you know or are related to who can help the poor guy. Your partner? A friend? Any other single relative besides grandma? Hell, even a co-worker? Offer to take them out to dinner when you get back as a thank-you for helping out gramps.

    This is very sad :( What would happen to him or grandma if you got hit by a bus? Are they set up local elderly care community type stuff? You know, where they get a home visit once a week or something?

    • You know, where they get a home visit once a week or something?

      i've tried to query those that provide home visit and they're quite expensive; unless am mistaken to which home visit were you referring to? is there any covered by Medicare?

      • A lot of services for elderly are covered by the local council in which they reside. Please do contact them for general help for them, you’d be surprised what they can offer. Perhaps not in this instance, but just generally in life.

      • Why did you italicise home visit?

      • Sorry I don't have an answer for your current situation but I have some information regarding home programs. I'm a support worker, so I do the home visits, but I got the following information from my boss a little while ago who knows a lot more about it.

        CHSP (Commonwealth home support program) for low level assistance. A certain amount of "hours" are given per week/fortnight, includes household (cleaning), community (appointments, shopping), meal prep etc. Call 1800 200 422, assessor will visit and ask questions.

        HCP (Home care package) if they need higher care, different levels have different fees and also depends on what assets you have but taken from pension. Supports are tailored and can include the above plus assistive equipment for around the home or mobility, products, transport (taxi vouchers). Doctors at the hospital or GP will refer through if there's a concern, the same phone number to call and an assessor will do a large assessment.

        If you think grandpa might need to be on HCP then it might be worth for him to mention it to his doctors while he's at the hospital. Also, a home care package should replace the need for someone to go to a nursing home ie support can be everyday, a couple of times a day.

        • For a HCP in which they receive support everyday (LV 3-4, highest level) will take way 3-4 years, a low level HCP (level 1-2) will take 12 months minimum

          CHSP is an option whilst awaiting a HCP but once approved you need to find your own providers, many of them are full and you'd be lucky to get the services you'd require, you're looking a 1-2hrs per week pending the service provider

          for the OP in terms of getting grandpa home, get the hospital social worker to organise PTS (Patient transport service) and let them know about the stairs, PTS won't stretcher grandpa up the stairs due to manual handling but they have a stair lifter, make sure that social worker specifies the stairs

          Source: your boss

  • i will be interstate on his discharge day and will be back just the day after; there's no one else able to pick him up.
    Q: has anyone had this sort of circumstance? is it too much of an ask if I politely request if he can stay for another night in the ward?

    Hospital beds are precious, especially in an environment where the government is investing less and less in hospital capacity.

    And your contribution to this issue is to want your Grandpa to stay another night coz you aren't there?

    The above plus the elevator maintenance schedule is not the problem of the state health system.

    • -6 votes

      get off your high horse, it happens just happened to us, read below.

      • they took him to respite in a nursing home where his wife is

        Your comment seems to say they didn't let him take up a hospital bed for an extra day either.

  • There is in NSW the patient transport service. It’s similar to an Ambulance but for transporting patients just like your grandpa.

    Call the hospital and they can assist in organising this for you.

    • Patient Transport Service is from hospital to hospital only, right?

      • Not always, I do know the even go to doctors.

        If this is not available -or he doesn’t qualify, then there are also community transport services, again the hospital knows of these

        • there are also community transport services

          thanks! good info, i'll look into this.

          • @tempura: Have you had ACAT or myagedcare do an assessment on either grandma or grandpa? Are they still able to live 100% independently?

            Once you have been approved for care, you'll have options for respite, home nurses, and transport services.

            Something to think about for the future even if it doesn't apply just yet.

            • @ozbjunkie: yes, I've just tried speaking to the hospital switchboard and asked specifically about getting my granpa home on his discharge day. I also mentioned about social worker and she just cold transferred me to senior assessment, which I believe is what you were referring to as ACAT or myAgedCare. There was no operator in that end of the phone call, only to leave message bank. From the Internet, the price is ain't cheap and I don't believe Medicare covers any of this:

              Package level Level of care needs
              Level 1 Basic care needs – approximately $8,750 a year
              Level 2 Low care needs – approximately $15,250 a year
              Level 3 Intermediate care needs – approximately $33,500 a year
              Level 4 High care needs – approximately $50,750 a year

              • @tempura: I think you might misunderstand. Those monetary amounts are the amount you are given, by the government, for free, to use on care services.

                If your grandparents qualify for pension or part pension, they are definitely eligible. If they are self funded, I'm not sure at what level of wealth you become ineligible.

                The ACAT assessment is not a quick process, so it wouldn't help this time, but if your parents have any difficulty shopping, cleaning, cooking, travelling to and from doctors, etc, then they may be eligible for some sort of home care.

                I'm happy to talk about any of this process as I have been through this twice now, once for grandpa and recebtly grandma.

                Try calling the hospital again, if the senior assessment is part of the hospital, then it's almost certainly not ACAT.


        Can be a to a respite place or a nursing home too. Tell these posters that are having a go at you to piss off, happened to us recently.

      • No it's not, patient transport can be organised from the hospital to home, I can even get you the number if you need
        They have stair lifters to get up stair, just has to be specified

        Source: I work in the hosptial and I have facilitated discharges with this service.

        PM if you need help
        Would also help if you could tell me the hospital

  • There are non-emergency ambulances (patient transport) that are used to get patients with mobility issues to and from medical treatment.
    These can likely be used in this case. Tell the hospital about your issue.
    I don't know the financial arrangements, but they certainly do handle public patients.

    • And you expect them to carry him up the stairs? Good luck. Will be the same as a taxi can do, But instead will cost the government $500 to do.

      • Not sure why you would think an ambulance officer would leave a patient on the street, but yes, I do expect our health system to help unwell people home, even if it requires stairs.

  • +5 votes

    We were in NZ a few weeks ago when our FIL was in the hospital, with no one to take him home they took him to respite in a nursing home where his wife is, they wouldn't send him home without knowing he was safe and had help.