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I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

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Old 05-21-2006, 07:44 PM   #1
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I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

I'm not sure how to go about getting my father out of a nursing home. He was hospitalized several weeks ago having fallen a few times and after taking tests and not finding any broken bones, etc., they hospital social worker recommended he go into nursing home for a week or so to get some physical therapy to strengthen his legs, etc. One week turned into two, two turned into three, and he is supposed to come home this week, butthis morning the nursing home told us he fell this morning. I knew this was going to be the scenario before he came home so that he could stay there. It seems he is starting to look like the other patients there, bruised, zoned out,e tc. He started talking like he's way out of it, more so than when he was at home. I really think he will do better at home with some home care. I don't trust this nursing facility. Should I get an attorney? The nursing home said we could take dad home any time but that if it is against their advice, they the insurance would not pay for his care. We are basically at their mercy at this point. If they say he's not ready, as has been the case, then our hands are tied. It's just a sad state of affairs. He seems to be getting worse and worse and it breaks my heart to see this going on. They don't use bedrails as they are illegal in our state due to patients having strangled on them in the past. He is barely eating any food. I could go on and on, but I'll close here. Any input welcome.

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Old 05-21-2006, 08:46 PM   #2
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Re: I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

Hi -

So sorry things seem to be going from bad to worse for your father. Who has his DPOA? That's the person the nursing home must deal with. That person needs to call his doctor and express the concerns of the family. If your father fell, there must be documentation on his chart about the fall and that puts the nursing home on the defensive - they're responsible to see that he has sufficient help so he never falls.

If you're determined he should come home, you can ask the doctor's office that home health care (or even hospice if he's in really bad shape) be arranged, plus perhaps a hospital bed rented for home use (with siderails). Then tell the doctor you're ready for your father to be at home as all has been prepared. Ask the doctor to discharge your father and the nursing home cannot call it against medical advice.

Be aware that it may be very difficult to have your father at home and you may lose a lot of sleep. It may happen that his care is too exhausting, too difficult, or too expensive for him to be at home, especially if insurance doesn't pay for home care.

The other option is to have your father transferred to a different nursing home if another one seems better to you. Again, his doctor would arrange the transfer when a room was available and the current nursing home could not fuss.

If all else fails, consult an attorney. If no one has DPOA, you may have little recourse, but at least you'd know.

Good luck! Barbara

Old 05-22-2006, 05:20 AM   #3
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Re: I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

Dear Gwenny,

I was skeptical at first, since most NHs have waiting lists and do not have to compete for patients. But when I saw that many other residents have bruises and act spaced out, I got worried.

I think another NH woud be good. Nobody has a right to keep a patient against their will, and their insurance will NOT be discontinued if they go home. That sounds like scare tactics to me.

I agree with Barbara's advive, above. Good luck!



Old 05-22-2006, 08:14 AM   #4
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Re: I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

Call your father's insurance company and ask them if they might refuse payment based on your taking him home because your concern for your dad's safety there. Make an appt with an attorney for a consultation.

Based on what you've observed, I'd consider telling the director of the NH that I didn't like what I saw and I was considering calling the state health dept. But that's just me. Scare tactics tend to work well for me. I know it sounds harsh but it works for me.

It sounds like this NH is all about the money and not at all about the patients. If that's the case, they may not have sufficient staffing. If that's case, they need to be reported.

Good luck in whatever you decide to do.

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Old 05-22-2006, 10:11 AM   #5
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Re: I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

The Nursing Home where Mom is is at

378 Syosset-Woodbury Rd, Woodbury NY 11797.

They also have a web site.

Good luck!



Old 05-22-2006, 12:13 PM   #6
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Re: I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

You might also find out what kind of pain medication he's on. While my mom was in the rehab part of the nursing home for therapy on her new hip, she was as you say, "zoned out".

It wasn't until after I requested they stop giving hydrocodone to her, that she seemed to come around better.

I know exactly what you're talking about though. My mom was in the best rated NH in WNY and although she was never ever abused or treated poorly, it was hard to see her day in day out for 6 weeks straight with a look of despair on her face.

A few days before Christmas, I was able to bring her home on the provision that I stay with her for one week (as she is a widow and lives alone). The fact that she has the very early stages of dementia going on, is the reason they didn't want her left alone.

After getting her home, she still was not quite like herself as she had been gone for so long. It took that week with me tending to her, getting up in the middle of the night to help her to the bathroom; cooking for her, etc. that she finally started to come around.

She's now made a wonderful recovery; is getting out more; going to physical therapy; and her depression has lifted. Being her only daughter, I more or less whole handedly took it upon myself to be the one there for her. It's not been easy as I'm sure most of you know, but am grateful that she's back to the way she was six months ago. Still has some confusing moments, but compared to the way she was in that nursing home, she's like her old sweet self again.

Best of luck, I so know what a struggle you are going through. You're all in my thoughts.

Old 05-31-2006, 03:33 AM   #7
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Re: I think nursing home is trying to keep my father.

Who signed for him to go into the nursing home? They cannot keep him there. Whoever signed him in can go and get him and walk out the front door. I used to work in admissions at a nursing home. When you go just let the social worker know that you are coming to take him home. If they tell you that his DR suggested that he stay than tell them that you will take him AMA (against medical advice). There is no way that they can make him stay if his responsible party comes and discharges him. Most of the time in nursing homes the doctors are in and out so fast they don't even see half of the patients they just look in their charts and make changes. Plus they didn't see your family member how you are used to seeing him. Call the doctor and make an appointment with him and discuss the med's, you family member being zoned out and about the doctor giving permission to go home. Most of the time if the doctor see's the family taking an active interest in the health and well being of the family member then they will try and work with your wishes.

Last edited by shai`anne; 05-31-2006 at 03:38 AM.

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