Hospital Doggy-Bag

If your child uses ANY medical supplies at all you know how important it is to keep those items on hand. When you in the hospital a lot of the supplies that you have to make last a month or more at home are considered single use. A great example is syringes. If your child is tube fed a nurse may come in with a handful of syringes multiple times a day for your child’s medications. After they push the medicine they toss the syringe. There is no difference between these syringes and the ones you use at home, other than what insurance or Medicaid will cover. Tell your nurse you are always low on syringes at home and ask him/her not to throw them away but to hand them to you. You can keep a little bag or bucket in the room and restock your home supply pretty quickly. You will need to wash them out, but you do this already with your home supply.

During hospital stays, any unused disposable medical supplies such as diapers, wipes, diaper creams, hygiene care items, syringes, suction buckets/tubes, socks, water bottles, saline bottles, nebulizer masks, etc. that are left in your room, take them home with you. As soon as a disposable medical supply or care product enters your child’s room, you have been charged for those items (or your insurance has)…if you don’t take them, hospital infection control dictates that these items be thrown away…so take them home and use them for your child as they were intended!

Obviously, this does not apply to everything. There are some items that can be cleaned and disinfected that are reused. Any monitors, linens, electronics etc are not considered disposable. If you take these items it is considered stealing. If you are not sure, just ask. Your nurse can tell you if an item is going to be thrown out or cleaned and they can help set the disposable items aside for you.

My husband likes to tease me and calls me a medical supply hoarder. For some items that are really hard to get hoarding them when you have a chance pays off when you need them later.