I’ve already told you about the Parking Lot escapade, where Mom fainted, and in the process garnered 3rd degree burns on her butt. She then fainted again at home a few weeks ago, called 911 and went to the hospital.
Two weeks in the hospital, tests, tests, tests. Everything is fine. I am so happy that everything is fine. The only thing not fine is that she can’t even walk to the bathroom by herself as a result of six months lying in bed because of the burns. Why she couldn’t stand or walk is beside the point I guess.
HMO decides that’s enough. (Ya think? I gave birth to twins and couldn’t get more than a day and a half out of MY Insurance Company!) Nothing is wrong, except she’s too weak to walk to the bathroom, so we will ship her off to Rehab. When I call on Thursday night, as I have for the last 14 days, they tell me Mom is not there anymore. She has been moved to a Rehabilitation Center. Good. I have been expecting this. “Great”, I say, “can you tell me where she is now?”
“I’m sorry” we can’t tell you that. HIPPA. Privacy rules, you know. We can’t tell you where she is. WTF? I am her daughter, and I need to know where she is. “You will need to call a family member” is the response. I AM A FAMILY MEMBER, I reply. I’m sorry I’m told. Ok I get the impression that nurse ratchet is not going to give me any more information. I have a brother living in the same city, so I assume that he was the family member of choice to get the call on “where they put Mom”. I call my brother. No answer. I leave a message. No return message. I text. No reply I “facebook” (is that a verb yet?) no reply. Hence the reason that said brother should not have been the family member of choice when it came to HIPPA.
Another day goes by until I get the call from my brother. Mother is found. Mother is in rehab. Mother is called. How’s it going Mom? “Well, I got here last night (Thursday) and today (Friday) I met with the doctors and they did an evaluation and came up with a plan”. Unfortunately, the physical therapists don’t work on the weekend, so the first session wasn’t until Monday. Now I’m doing the math. Thursday afternoon until Monday afternoon and no Rehab in the Rehabilitation Center. “But the food is great,” says Mom. Monday’s therapy went very well. They worked her so hard she didn’t think she could finish…but she wasn’t a quitter…so she kept on going. Tuesday also went well. She walked twice as far as she normally does at home when walking to the mailbox (approx. 100 yards). You have to understand that walking to the mailbox maybe three times a week is “exercise” to Mom. Wednesday…not as good. She did her physical therapy but she got a little dizzy and her blood pressure went down. SO…when I called on Thursday Mom was REAL excited to tell me she got her hair cut and colored, right there is the Rehab Center. She really needed it, she explained, after being in the hospital for going on three weeks. “Great, Mom.” “So how was your physical therapy?” Well, Mom explains, I didn’t really have time for it because the hair cut and color took so long, and it was also shower day, so I ran out of time. MOM…You’re in a Rehabilitation Center, NOT a country club!! You don’t miss P.T. because you were getting your hair done!!! Knowing my mother, there was probably more to the story than switching her therapy for a haircut. “Did I tell you how good the food is?” says Mom.
So my flight is on hold. I’ll get down to Tucson when they finally let Mom out. Considering that it’s not a privacy issue and that I DO find out they’ve sent her home.And What IS it that’s wrong with our Healthcare system in this country? There are some REALLY sick people out there who could be using my mother’s share of healthcare dollars. But that’s another story.
…to be continued (I’m sure)