Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Hospice home care and a dying patient

Yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon, a home hospice company delivered a hospital bed, a wheel chair, a hydraulic lifting device, an oxygen system and a portable tank.

Around 7 p.m. Mrs. R. was brought to the house. She will stay with Priscilla and me until she no longer can or until we no longer can take care of her.

Not long after Mrs. R. was placed in the bed, she said her mother and her brother told her she should stay at her brother’s cabin in Smyrna, northwest of DeQueen. Mrs. R.’s mother died in 1994 at age 97, and her brother died in 2009 at age 88.

Mrs. R. also believes she should get out of bed whenever she wants. She sometimes tries with as much strength as she has, when no one is looking.

She can be taken from bed with the lifting device, which has a hammock-like attachment and straps. This morning Priscilla lifted Mrs. R. from the bed and then positioned the wheel chair and lowered Mrs. R. into the chair. Priscilla and I had to make some adjustments and repositioning, but considering it was the first-time use of the equipment, we did okay. Mrs. R. didn’t have any complaint.

The schedule is for a CNA to visit two hours a day, Monday-Friday, and a registered nurse once a week.

Having Mrs. R. here will not be easy, especially for Priscilla. She will be taking care of her mother’s needs, physical and mental and administrative, and she will continue overseeing and doing administrative work for her brother, who is in a group home 140 miles from here.

Some of the country’s socialized medicine works; maybe more than we know or believe.

The first RN left just a few minutes ago. You know how some things work, that whatever your problem is, someone else’s is … not worse, but more immediate? The RN’s 32-year-old daughter, Kelly, is at Baptist Heart Hospital. Kelly has had four heart transplants. Her diagnosis “is not good,” the RN said. Kelly has an 11-year-old son.

The RN prays consistently. “I want God to become tired of hearing her name, and he will say, ‘Okay. I don’t need to hear her name any more. She’s cured.’”

Prayers and kind thoughts are appreciated.

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