My parent or carer is in hospital

People come into hospital for all different reasons. Sometimes they visit the outpatients departments for an appointment or they have to stay in hospital for the day, overnight or sometimes longer until they are well enough to go home. 

At hospital you will see lots of different members of staff. Everyone in the hospital is there to help make your parent/carer’s stay as easy as possible and to make them feel better. If there is anything you want to know more about, you can ask the nurses, doctors and therapists. 

What to expect when I come to visit my parent or carer in hospital

Hospitals can be a strange place at first, you may see things that you have never seen before and hear things you have not heard before. It is normal to feel anxious coming into hospital, but as time goes on you will get more comfortable being at the hospital when you come to visit your parent/carer. Your parent/carer will get their own bed to sleep in and a cupboard to keep all their things safe. 

Your feelings 

Having a parent/carer in hospital can make you feel worried about things. You may have many questions about why your parent/carer is in hospital. It is a good idea to talk about how you are feeling to your family and ask any questions you may have.  Members of their health care team are great people to talk to in hospital if you want to talk to someone outside of your family.  

What can I do to help my parent/carer when they are in hospital 

Here are some ideas of things you could do to help make the hospital feel more like home:

  • You could make them a drawing to help decorate their room
  • You could write them a card or letter about how you are feeling and what has been happening at home 
  • You could send them a special picture or video 
  • You could speak to them on the phone or online 
  • You may have many more ideas of things that you can do to help

Frequently asked questions

What can I bring with me when I come to visit my parent/carer in hospital? 

  • Toys to help if you get bored 
  • Something to remind your parent/carer of home and family e.g a card, drawings or pictures 

Visiting times

  • Visiting times are a bit different on every ward. Please ask a member of staff when you arrive
  • You can visit your parent/carer when you are not at school 

Is there WiFi

  • If you want to go online there’s free WiFi at The Royal London Hospital. You can ask a member of staff to help you get online.

Food options

  • There is a canteen on the 5th Floor of the hospital and a Costa Café on the ground floor where you can buy food and drinks.