Letter to the editor

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Nursing home advocates needed

Re: Mother’s death

My mother passed away at a nursing home eight months ago and as I spend my days planning her funeral in a month, I find that I become sad and angry all over again.

My brothers and I had the hard choice to put our mother in a nursing home there in Sheridan and in hindsight, I can no longer be still. We were unaware that we would have to keep a spreadsheet on some of the poor care she received. Overall, her care was pretty good, but many times she was without oxygen and expected to do things she was unable to do. One to three people were there every day to make sure she was being cared for. What about all the others with no one to advocate for them?

My mother suffered needlessly and died alone. The night before she died, I spent the whole night with her and she was in such pain she was begging me to help her. They were giving her Tylenol only. There apparently was a breakdown in communication between the day nurse and the night nurse. The day nurse was to instruct the night nurse if the patient got worse to call Sheridan Memorial Hospital and the doctor on call would prescribe the pain medicine. Unfortunately, I am unable to attain those records. The night nurse waited until 8 a.m. for the doctor’s office to open.

My husband and I drove to the doctor’s office and demanded something be done for her pain. We were told it was being held up by the provider. I believe something needs to be done, like giving them the pain medication right away. Hello, they are dying!

She finally got some relief at 2 in the afternoon, after 24 hours of pain. She died that night. It’s just not right, in this day and age, that a person should have to suffer so.

Many of the patients in the nursing homes don’t have anyone watching over them. If volunteering is in your future, consider being an advocate for someone in need. I don’t want any other family to have to go through this, so my advice to you is document everything because if you want to file a complaint you have to know who, what, where, when, why and how.

Joni (Noel) Carr

Parker, Colorado

 

By |June 12th, 2018|

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