Sometimes when we cruise, we feel our greatest worry is leaving the elderly relatives behind. Our recent experiences with my mother in law have only served to reenforce that worry.
Gram's mom (Rose) was not feeling well on Monday. She described herself as feeling dizzy. It got bad enough that she convinced my father in law that she should get some medical attention. When they could not get instant response from their doctor, 911 was called. Off Rose went to the nearest hospital. Quite frankly a place I would not let treat my pet fish, never mind a sick adult.
Well 6 hours and a few tests later she got sent home. This is despite the fact that on entry her BP was 170 over 110 , she was unable to stand and was somewhat incoherent. Tuesday morning she was no better and you could add slurred speech and a drooped lip to her symptoms. Off she went, this time at least to a major hospital center where her regular doctor at least had rights to practice. About 5 hours later the attending physician tells my father in law he is sending Rose home, nothing wrong except maybe a slight inner ear infection.
Luckily at this point Gram was there. What happened to the neurologist she was supposed to see and what happened to the MRI that was ordered by her doctor??
And in addition, did she not have every classic symptom of a stroke? Well, no one was going to question this doctor so he stomped away . Luckily a few moments later the neurologist arrived, He looked at Rose and said "MRI now!!, this lady has had a stroke".
MRI confirmed the stroke. Rose is resting comfortably in the hospital.
Gram's comment when she got home last night, was " if an elderly couple goes to a hospital and they don't have a younger relative to act as an outspoken advocate, they die".
This follows similar experiences only a few months back with wrong medications being given , wrong food being given, no medication being given when it was due and some else's IV being hooked up (all when recovering from surgery in a rehab facility).
One fellow worker here whose wife is a Resident at a major hospital in NY says his wife will not allow any relatives to go near a hospital unless she can go with them to keep them from making a mistake.
I think we have pushed our medical system to the brink. Workers are iverworked, underpaid, hospitals are under staffed and there is too much pressure to "treat and release" patients rather than "observe, test carefully and properly diagnose , THEN treat.
Makes us worry that we cannot leave . Brings up the whole subject of elder care once again. (they swear they are independent and can handle this stuff).
Thank you, it was cheaper for me to write this out than going to therapy for me .