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Step by step guide to write a ‘Discharge Letter in OET Medicine’

Posted on August 31, 2023
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Why take OET certification?

  • To practice as a healthcare professional in English-speaking countries
  • Know how to communicate better in healthcare environments
  • Know what terminology to use in clinics, hospitals
  • Helps healthcare professionals gain confidence while practicing
  • Improves overseas career prospects of healthcare professionals

A step-by-step guide to writing a ‘Discharge Letter in OET Medicine’

In the medical field, communicating properly is very essential. It is a must-know skill for healthcare professionals to have the capability to write an exhaustive and well-structured discharge letter.

The objective of the Occupational English Test (OET) is to evaluate healthcare professionals’ language skills, including their writing skills.

This article strives to be a step-by-step guide on what healthcare professionals must consider before writing a discharge letter in OET Medicine that ensures that you properly communicate all the information.

Know the intention and whom it is addressing

Before you begin to write a discharge letter, know why it is being written and who it is being addressed to. Usually, a discharge letter’s intent is to outline a patient’s medical history, the treatment he/she is receiving, and the plans for that person’s future care. The audience will comprise healthcare professionals who are directly involved in a particular patient’s continuing care. As the objective of an OET is to gauge if your communication abilities will convey a message efficiently to various healthcare professionals, you should write it thoughtfully and accurately.

Gather appropriate information

You need to gather information that is applicable before writing an exhaustive discharge letter. Included in this letter should be the patient’s personal information, health history, diagnosis, care provided, treatment prescribed, and any additional instructions. You need to have all the required medical documents, results of all tests, and health advice of a particular patient while you write it.

Structure the letter well

If a letter is structured well, it will be easy to read and understand it. It should begin with a formal greeting. Later, it should announce the name, age, and dates of admission of a patient. The main body should provide an outline of the medical history of the patient, which should include the reason for that person’s admission, examination, and the treatment administered. The language one has to use in it should be plain and crisp, without using terminology or complicated medical expressions that a reader from a non-medical background would find difficult to understand.

Include appropriate information

The core of the discharge letter in OET medicine should have all the crucial information about the patient’s treatment. It can explain the therapies performed, treatments administered, and any substantial observations made during the patient’s stay at the hospital. If there were any complications, mention how they were handled. If required, offer recommendations for further examinations or medical appointments with other specialists.

Outline aftercare plans

It is a must to summarize the future care plans of the patient in the discharge letter. State if any medications need to be continued or withdrawn, along with instructions on the dosage. If the patient has to modify his/her lifestyle or eating habits, they have to be mentioned clearly. It should also mention if the patient needs to attend any more appointments or examinations, with the details required, such as appointment dates and locations.

Review for grammatical and syntax errors

After the discharge letter has been drafted, it should be reviewed for spelling, grammatical, and sentence structure errors so that the sentences are well-organized and clear. Punctuation and formatting should be carried out properly. It is suggested that the letter should be read aloud to rectify phrases that are improper or if any passages do not make sense. Take the help of a peer or guide to get feedback for the letter.

Keep it confidential

All matters related to healthcare should be kept confidential. Throughout the discharge letter, ensure maintaining the confidentiality of the patient. Do not use the patient’s full name or any other information identifying him/her unless in cases of emergency. Make use of initials or broad terms for protecting the privacy of the patient.


When a discharge letter in OET medicine is being written, care should be taken to write it cautiously by paying attention to details and writing it professionally.

When you use the procedures mentioned above, an extensive and organized discharge letter should be written, communicating all the information required to the people to whom it is addressed.

Do practice writing these letters regularly to improve your writing abilities, and ask for feedback from experts to improve your performance in the OET.

If you are intending take an OET exam, get in touch with Y-Axis, a premier overseas immigration consultancy, to get proper coaching and guidance.

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