Serious health issues ignored by 92 year old father's doctor
My 92 year old father's doctor consistently ignored serious symptoms,complaints and questions from both my father and myself. He would make jokes when I expressed concerns over what I considered elder abuse by a family member's badgering, resulting in Dad's becoming very depressed. Obvious (now) physical symptoms were also ignored, and when Dad asked what was wrong with him, the doctor replied, "You're just God damn old, see you in six months". Dad would reply that he'd be dead in six days and the doctor would laugh. I had him in the office every week for a month, and when I finally asked for help in the home, it took two follow-up calls to get him to order the VNA to come in. They immediately picked up on several serious issues and after barely two weeks, sent Dad to the emergency room. It turns out that he has diabetes and congestive heart failure, among other things, and the symptoms were blatantly obvious. He was told by his doctor to go on the "Haagen Das diet" and eat anything and everything to gain weight, and he has diabetes. He was told that he was out of breath and couldn't walk five steps without stopping because he didn't exercise enough, and he has CHF. The list goes on and on, and they're all serious conditions. The hospital and now rehab doctors are all understandably quiet about his former care. Dad had been doing so well, but he has slipped so much in a period of about a month that it looks like he won't be able to return home again due to the 24/7 safety issues and nursing care that family just can't provide. So, my question is - what should I do about this, if anything? I feel that the doctor's practice should know about my concerns, at least. I don't want to create a huge mess when we're now facing Dad's serious health issues, the unexpected prospects of a permanent nursing home, dealing with Medicare, our family home now vacant - but I also don't want other seniors treated so poorly by this man. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.