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Question about hospitalizations (Update- bottom post)

UncleBuddy
Posts: 1019
Joined: Aug 2013

As you know, my brother was hopspitalized with multiple thoracic emboli. He had surgery to remove them, was in ICU and today was moved to a room. He has another person in the room with him. I thought, since he has a weakened immune system, that he would be in his own room. Am I crazy thinking that? That makes more sense to me. Just curious what all of you wonderful people have experienced. I'm going to call his oncologist in the morning to see if we can get him transferred out of this hospital anyway because there is no communication still from the doctors there. I am fed up with the lack of courtesy. I will say that the nurses on his new floor are wonderful, but the ICU nurses were not. He's not eating today and I'm worried that something is brewing. If you know my brother, he likes to eat, so something isn't right. He ate better yesterday. Anyway, just curious what you all think about him having to share a room.

Lin

LivinginNH's picture
LivinginNH
Posts: 1458
Joined: Apr 2010

 

Hi,

Remember, with hospitals it's all about the money and how much an insurance company will pay them.  However, if your insurance company is not willing to pay for a private room, you may pick up the extra costs on your own.  My Rick usually had a roommate,but it didn't make a difference - there are more nasty germs on the equipment in the hospital than he could probably ever get from a roommate!  Mersa is everywhere, my father caught it when he was hospitalized, and it turned to sespis.  Rick's surgeon always wanted me to get Rick out the of hospital and home as soon as possible where there were less troublesome bacteria and other germs. 

Take care,

Cyn

wolfen's picture
wolfen
Posts: 1329
Joined: Apr 2009

Ron was hospitalized 13 times from Nov. 2012 to May 2013. Many times, he had a roommate, depending on the severity of the situation & the availability of a private room. As Cyn says, it's also about money. In some cases, it's about the welfare of the patient & those around him. Hope you get an answer from the doc and are able to move him to the hospital of your choice.

Luv,

Wolfen

UncleBuddy
Posts: 1019
Joined: Aug 2013

I guess I was thinking with my heart, not my brain. Of course, it's all about money. Duh! I'm going to chat with his onc in the am, we'll see what we can do. I am not happy with the lack of communication we are getting here. All I know is my brother was moved out of ICU. No one called us or gave us any info on his health, AT ALL!!! 

Lin

Goldie1's picture
Goldie1
Posts: 264
Joined: Sep 2011

Somewhere along the way, from the time my husband was diagnosed with cancer, he picked up MRSA.  We think he picked it up from one of the many times he was in the hospital.  But, the hospital where he always goes, is all single rooms.  More hospitals are doing this to help combat the spread of germs.  I guess in my husband's case, it didn't help.  

Hope your brother is eating and feeling better today!

Ellen

Livingbyfaith's picture
Livingbyfaith
Posts: 56
Joined: Sep 2007

I was very disgusted with the new care at the hospitals.  My husband got c-dif twice, we had to fight for private rooms, care most often now good, in the end they quit food water and medications until I signed hospice.  Only gave him dillaudid.  They paid a sitter in the room supposedly to keep him from faling when he couldn't even get up, but she stopped me from feedng him  Beware of what can happen, if you get too many hospitalizations, hospice forced on you where you don't go back to the hospital.  Research what they call the death panel.  It is already in use.  Keep as many people going in as you can, be the squeaking wheel.  God bless.

Lovekitties's picture
Lovekitties
Posts: 3372
Joined: Jan 2010

Once a patient no longer can be helped to better health or needs treatment which can only be given at the hospital, the insurance companies insist on other arrangements, be it a nursing home, rehab or hospice.  This has been the process for many years.

I don't know about "death panels" but felt from the inception of HMO's that insurance companies were playing too heavy a hand in what care a patient could or could not get.

The only choices we seem to have is to either have a doctor who is willing to "manage the insurance company" to get what you feel necessary or for you to say cost is not problem and what insurance won't pay I will regardless of their opinion.

Being determined to be a "terminal" patient makes bucking the system harder.

Marie who loves kitties

thxmiker's picture
thxmiker
Posts: 1282
Joined: Oct 2010

Tell every Doctor before you go into surgery that you have been diagnosed positively for C.Diff.  That guarantees you a single room. It works every time.

 

Best Always,  mike

 

PS  I never said, nor recommended  this.   lol

Anonymous user (not verified)

A nosocomial infection is one that is aquired in the hospital. One that the patient did not have upon entry.  In some infectious processes it can be difficult to determine if it was aquired in the hospital. The two mentioned (MRSA & C-Diff) are part of those that can be difficult.  MRSA is a very common bacteria.  In 1987 when I started working in healthcare it was estimated that approximately 75% of healthcare workers are carriers.  That probably translates to near 100& now since we see and care for so many patients with MRSA active infections.  Also it is common outside the hospital in the community.  The problem usually occurs with patients who have a weakened immune system.  As for the C-Diff (Clostridium Difficile), it is a bacteria that is a normal part of the digestive system. However it can proliferate when other antibiotics kill the other normal bacteria in our digestive system that keep it in check.  Again a weakened immune system adds to the C-Diff proliferation.

Most of us who are on or have been on chemo have a weakened immune system.  Any patient who is immuno compromised must be placed in reverse isolation.  which means we take extrodinary care to protect them from our germs. The patient should be placed in a private room (usually designed with filtered air flowing from the room to outside the room), the staff must wash their hands with a disinfective soap or solution, put on a clean gown, mask, and gloves over their own clothes before entering the room and making contact with the patient.

Many hospitals have not adopted an extensive program called Zero Harm which explains and demonstrates how to reduce mistakes made in patient care. One large hospital which designed and instituted the program has reached that zero point of no mistakes in patient care.  Insurance companies love this because it reduces their costs also.  The statisitcs surrounding avoidable mistakes made by staff and hospital procedures are alarming.

I encourage people to know their disease process and precautions that should be used through their own research and to know their rights in the hospital. When something doesn't seem right ask questions.  If the answers don't come ask to speak to someone of higher authority. Being demanding or emotional usually gets you nowhere. Make sure the nurse checks the patients arm band to the medication or treatment everytime. The right patient, the right medication and dose, the right time of procedure.  Speak up for yourself and loved one.

Dan    

UncleBuddy
Posts: 1019
Joined: Aug 2013

He now has the room to himself and a HEPA filter running. I am literally at my wits end! I don't know what type of infection it is yet. How do you all do it? God bless every one of you. 

Cry

Lin

 

LivinginNH's picture
LivinginNH
Posts: 1458
Joined: Apr 2010

 

How you ask?  One day at a time dear, one day at a time....

UncleBuddy
Posts: 1019
Joined: Aug 2013

I am usually such a calm person, USUALLY. I guess the momma bear is starting to come out, he's my little brother. I have called the hospital 3 times already, each time was told to call back because the nurse is busy. Granted, I understand they're busy, but come on.... I still don't know what type of infection he has. I have not received one call from a doctor. I spoke to patient relations, not much help. I thought things were looking better when he moved, it seems the nurses are more attentive on this floor, but I'm not getting answers. We walked in there today to be hit with him having an infection, diarreah, rectal bleeding, etc..... and a sitter in the room with him. No one bothered to call, even though it is written on his file that he is ID and there's a healthcare proxy there with my name and number. Tomorrow, I think I'm going to find the chief of staff. I have to get some answers as to what the heck is going on. 

Lovekitties's picture
Lovekitties
Posts: 3372
Joined: Jan 2010

If everyone you are dealing with are employed or associated to the hospital, time to go to the top...Hospital Administrator.  Just let them know that you will be forced to take legal action regarding your bother's care and the lack of communication with you who are his medical proxy.

That should light a fire under a few butts!

You should follow-up with a certified/return receipt requested letter stating your objections to what has already gone

I totally understand your major concerns and they are well founded.  Even patients who are normally able to deal with medical issues on their own, often need that exta watching over and interaction with the medical staff.

Don't hesitate to mention that all these issues fall under the American's with disabilities act, and you are inches away from contacting them.

Wishing you and your brother easier times soon.

Hugs,

Marie who loves kitties

UncleBuddy
Posts: 1019
Joined: Aug 2013

I guess I spoke to the right people today, I finally got some answers and apologies. He looks better today and he's responding well to the antibiotics. His kidneys are fine, no clots in his legs and the infection is neither mrsa or c-diff. They should have the exact name tomorrow. They did an echocardiogram and I am supposed to hear from the cardiologist tomorrow. The clots were so big, they were clogging the arteries to his heart, which put a lot of strain on it. Cardiologist wanted an echo to make sure there was no permanent damage, they did it today. They are working on the diarreah now, which is not exactly being helped by his meds (and chemo that he has been on). The have an aide in his room 24/7 to help him with his bathroom needs. They also scheduled a visiting nurse and social worker for when he goes home. Baby steps...we'll see how it goes from here.

I thought I was going to have to raise the roof, but by being direct, to the point and not sounding emotional, I guess I got my point across.

Thank you for your suggestions and especially the hugs. I really needed them!!!

Lin

PS I am so sorry about your sister! :(

Anonymous user (not verified)

living in a 3rd world country because I know there are no hospitals or doctors on the moon who could take such an autonomus attitude to patient care and comfort.  I don't know what legal rights a patient's proxy has, but a courtesy call would be the very least they could do.  Is he not able to use a phone himself?  Is he able to make his own health care decisions?  You need to 1st talk to the charge nurse, then ask to talk to the nurse administrator, then go to the hospital administrator with your legal counsel (if you have rights to decision making) and request the doctor be present at that meeting.  If he doesn't show, you've got the wrong doc.

Dan 

UncleBuddy
Posts: 1019
Joined: Aug 2013

My brother is intellectually disabled (low IQ) and needs me as his advocate. I am the person who makes all his healthcare decision because he is not capable of doing it himself. Today I spoke with the nurse practitioner, his socail worker and the head nurse and got immediate answers along with an apology. There is now a big note on my brother's chart telling the night shift to connect me directly to the evening NP. We are waiting on some test results, but so far his temp is gone, his kidneys are fine and there are no clots in his legs. We know it's not MRSA or C-diff, so that's good. They are still waiting on the final results, but they said the infection is being treated with antibiotics. I have all his doctors names and should get a call tomorrow about his echocardiogram results.  The social worker already put plans into action to have a visiting nurse and social worker at his house when he goes home. All this happened, and I didn't have to yell or carry on. I was direct, to the point and told them how unsettling it was that a person like my brother and his family were totally being ignored by the staff. I told them that this is the first hospital that has ever treated my brother and our family in such an uncaring way. I guess I got the right people this time and now I got the ball rolling. Let's see how things go during the rest of his stay. I don't completely trust that things will keep going in a positive manner.

Lin

LivinginNH's picture
LivinginNH
Posts: 1458
Joined: Apr 2010

 

:)  Atta girl, good job, I knew you could do it.  :)

Hugs,

Cyn

UncleBuddy
Posts: 1019
Joined: Aug 2013

I had a lot of encouragement from you guys! He's looking better. Hopefully he'll be out of there soon.

Lin

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