Packing an Elderly Adult’s Bag for the Hospital

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Is your aging parent getting ready for a scheduled surgery or medical procedure that requires a hospital stay?
If so, you have some time to pull together a hospital bag that specifically meets their needs if they must stay there for several days. While the hospital will provide the basics, many people like to bring some important extras that make their stay more pleasant and won’t leave them without some essential items that they don’t want to live without.

Homecare in Aventura FL: Packing A Hospital Bag

Homecare in Aventura FL: Packing A Hospital Bag


It’s also a good idea for family caregivers and senior care providers to have a hospital bag packed for the aging adult, even if there is no scheduled hospital stay. Because of age-related issues, many elderly adults must make emergency trips to the hospital. During that stressful time, it’s much easier for you or the senior care provider to grab a bag already packed with important things than to scurry around trying to find items. In the stress of the moment, you will be grateful for the advanced planning.

So, what items should go into your aging mom or dad’s hospital bag? While each senior’s needs are unique, there are some essentials that everyone should include:

    • Clean underwear
    • Socks or slippers
    • Bathrobe, cardigan sweater or zip-up hoodie
    • Drawstring pajama bottoms
    • Toothbrush and toothpaste
    • Hairbrush or comb
    • Makeup for women
    • Shaving accessories
    • Wet wipes
    • Non-scented lotion and lip balm
    • A small amount of cash
    • Books or e-readers
    • Magazines, playing cards, or puzzles
    • A few appropriate snacks
    • Medical history paper with current medication, doctor information, and recent surgeries
    • Copies of medical insurance cards and other relevant financial information
    • Legal documents such as a living will and power of attorney
    • Backup glasses, hearing aid batteries and other needed devices
    • Small personal comfort item such as a photo


The hospital bag itself should be sturdy and include a shoulder strap as well as the handles.
If you are packing the bag for a future emergency, store the bag in a location that is easy to access, such as a closet by the front door. If there is a rush, you can simply grab the bag as you assist your aging parent.

It’s no surprise that staying in a hospital can be cold, impersonal and frightening for seniors who are used to aging in place at home. As wonderful as the hospital staff is, many seniors simply want to feel comfortable. A properly packed overnight bag can do the job. If there is an emergency, it’s also a great comfort to family caregivers to know that their loved one’s needs will be met.


If you or a family member are in need of Homecare in Aventura, FL, call the caring professionals at Star Multi Care today at (954) 870-4770.
Providing service in Boca Raton, West Palm Beach, Delray Beach, Boynton Beach, Weston, Southwest Ranches, Pembroke Pines, Cooper City, Lighthouse Point, and Wilton Manors.

About the author: Stephen Sternbach
Stephen Sternbach has been the Chairman of the Board of Directors, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Star Multi Care Services since 1987. After the sale of the New York and New Jersey operations of Star Multi Care Services, Sternbach brought the company private where he remains President and CEO of this newly developed $22M home healthcare company. With Sternbach at the helm, Star Multi Care Services employs more than 550 employees, in six offices throughout Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio and New York. From 1978 to 1986, Sternbach was associated with Automated Data Processing, Inc. (“ADP”)–a provider of information services, where he held several marketing positions before becoming the Director of Sales. 1999-2008 Sternbach was an active participant on the Board of Directors for Proginet–a computer software company based in Garden City, New York. He also served on the Board of Trustees of the Long Island Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society from 1996-2002. In 1996, Stephen Sternbach was named “Entrepreneur of the Year” by Ernst & Young, Paine Webber and NASDAQ. Sternbach was also named in Crain’s New York Business Article, “40 Under 40” Successful Business Executives/Future Business Leaders in 1995. While maintaining a diversity of business and personal interests, Sternbach concentrated most of his efforts over the past 28 years towards continuously improving the quality of services delivered by the Star Multi Care Services’ family of companies. Stephen Sternbach holds a Master of Public Administration from Syracuse University – Maxwell School of Public Administration and a Bachelor of Arts in Industrial Relations and Personnel Administration from Ithaca College.