Help for the home health

 

Have you ever wished for some advanced warning when one of ‘those’ days was just around the corner? I’m thinking of something akin to a weather radio that announces imminent storms ahead in my life.

I oversee the management of my mother’s medications due to symptoms associated with her Alzheimer’s. Because she lives in assisted living, I work in conjunction with home care. Home care is private-pay care for services not covered under home health. I have hired an organization that works on site, and they dispense medications twice daily. I am responsible for setting up the medicine tray for each week. It sounds simple enough to me.

Despite a set of checks and balances, her medications have not been properly dispensed again. I uncovered the same scenario  today that I already encountered twice in the past seven months since moving her. A staff person initialed they had dispensed the medication, yet it was still in the medicine tray. A second issue occurred when no one initialed their work, yet the medication was gone.

My day started out by delivering bad news to my mother about a test done recently that may have uncovered yet another health problem. Now I felt sick, nauseous, a cold sweat settling in as my mind ran in a thousand directions.

Were we correct to blame the erratic behavior on the Alzheimer’s? What about the persistent pains she mentions?

Who is right and what is wrong?

The more I considered the possible implications, the more my fears ran on.

I went through appropriate channels within their system, and notified the director of the facility.  I am in a holding pattern until the agency questions everyone involved.

What questions would you ask in this situation?

 

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9 thoughts on “Help for the home health

  1. Joyful in Christ August 16, 2012 at 9:30 am Reply

    So sorry that I do not have answers or questions for you. May God supply you peace as you walk through your tough day. Praying for you daily.

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  2. thewallacegroupkw August 16, 2012 at 11:08 am Reply

    Hang in there. All you can do is all you can do and it sounds like you are doing your part. I can relate in so many ways. God is good, though!

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  3. msherice August 17, 2012 at 4:31 am Reply

    I’d ask what the penalty is for failure to perform required duties? Well, truthfully I’m not always so bold so, it might take some time to get to that point. More likely, I’d research other home care services. You take your mother’s health seriously. You deserve help that respects and responds to that. Ask the staff persons what you could do to assure more consistency. Ask if maybe there are other directions being given that maybe you’re unaware of.

    Hope this was helpful. God Bless!

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  4. […] there is currently no precursor test for Alzheimer’s. Ignorance can be bliss, as they say. Today I met with the staff from my mom’s new home health agency. (Check the link for that stor…As I happily signed off on paperwork, I had a brain blurp. ‘What is the date today?’ She […]

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  5. Christina September 18, 2012 at 5:15 pm Reply

    I know this response is a bit late, but I just found your blog. We have had my mother in law (who has alzheimer’s disease) living with us for 2 years, so I have experience with home health aides. When our first company failed to provide reliable service, I asked the social worker at the adult day service she attends to recommend a new service. The new service is terrific. So try the social worker assigned to your mom’s assisted living facility. They usually know what’s what and who’s who. May God bless you both.

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    • Overwhelmed By Joy September 18, 2012 at 10:16 pm Reply

      That is a great suggestion. After 3 occasions where I had to call about medication errors, I did decide to make a change in services. It has been a good move, and she adjusted to the change much better than anticipated. Hopefully this will be a permanent relationship, but I definitely appreciate your input. How is your mother-in-law doing?

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