vikki628 Asked June 2010

Can they let my father die from pneumonia?

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Dad is trying hard to stay healthy with walking, excersizing and eatting a good diet. He's in the last stage of Parkinson's. He looks like he's getting sick with pneumonia. My mother has HOSPICE people there with her. She said they are only there for her and Dad. None of the family members. Mother and the HOSPICE nurse have decided NOT to bring my Dad to his doctor for medicine for the pneumonia or virus. Mom said Dad will die at home from the Pneumonia. I am confused. How can you not give your husband antibiotics to help him?? I feel she's just going to let him suffocate in his own infected lung liquid. Can anyone explain how this can happen?

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I have had recurrent pneumonia since I was 5 weeks old and believe me each time all I want to do is get better quock. Get that man to a doctor yestederday quickly.It is horrible thinking you are going to drown in your own fluids. If your dad wants to go then get him in the car immediately no matter what your mother wants! !
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SoAlone Jun 2010
I do not think you have to agree to be POA or sign anything. Only the person making the request for a certain POA.

My dad assigned me as his POA. I did happen to be in the room but I signed nothing. Then my dad put my brother as 2nd if I could not be there to make decisions for him, and a 3rd if neither myself nor my brother could be reached. None of these people were there.

I did later send them copies so they would know dad had requested they honor his wishes. I also sent them a copy of his wishes.

So the person requesting you be POA is the only one who signs and then the Notary signs it and stamps it. But it doesn't do a lot of good unless you send the people who you want to be your POA for healthcare a copy!

If you change your POA request you need to make sure the new people assigned know about the old one. Once the doctor determines you can no longer make decision the doctor can put the POA into effect.
They did this to my dad and I am his POA.

I think he was fully able to make his own decision but they say no. When I said I wanted to have my dad do a new POA and add my sister. They said NO he was not competent to even change his POA. So it is important to pick someone you really trust.... or not do it at all.

I'm in Missouri.
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ezcare Jun 2010
vikki,
You are right to be asking questions since it sounds like you have been "drafted" into this situation.
Here are a couple of questions you need to get answered truthfully before it is too late:
1) Who are these HOSPICE people that your mother has with her and why exactly are they there? (reference http://www.hospicenet.org/ for some explanations of the answers you might get)
2) Sounds like your father may have already agreed to HOSPICE. If so, then his wishes may include a DNR. If so, the ER will refuse to admit him so you need to check this before you rush him off to the hospital.
3) Is your mother confusing POA with Caregiver? You cannot receive POA unless you agree to serve and sign off on all the legal paperwork that must be filed with Government authorities. It is not something your mom can just hand off to you. Assuming you were alone with your father and he has a medical emergency, then you would be obligated to call 911. However, if the HOSPICE nurse and/or your mother as POA for medical were there, they are not obligated to call 911 since it would be your father's wish to die at home rather than be resuscitated in the ER.
4) How does your father want this end of life scenario to play out? If he has already made his wishes known to your mother then you need to hear it from him, if he is able to talk to you or from your mom. Either way, you have no control over the outcome, so you should not feel responsible. Your focus should be on giving your father the love and attention he needs from you without making him feel he is letting you down if he chooses to die by natural causes. That is HOSPICE is all about.
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tpfzowie Jun 2010
As others have said, talk to your dad if he is able to respond. It truly is his choice.

As I sit here next to my mother, in her hospital room, I think I might understand your mother's thinking, a little. My mom came here vomiting blood and docs only found a small ulcer. She has been getting meds for that. Now she seems on the verge of pneumonia, with a great deal of chest congestion.

She cannot swallow correctly and is at constant risk for aspiration. She has a feeding tube, but only seems to be getting weaker, in spite of better nutrition. Her body seems ready to give out. With the arthritis that is crippling her along with right sided weakness from previous strokes, I wonder sometimes if we should "just let her go."

I would not be able to live with myself, if, for instance, I as her medical POA, stopped further treatment if she does progress into pneumonia. I want to comply with her wishes as stated in her living will, but this is not covered. Yet at times she looks at me and says "I shouldn't still be here"' so I feel torn.

I do not trust the local hospice program since they seem to be into euthanasia. I believe that some people that work for them feel empowered to take a life, when they don't see the quality of life they think the patient should have.

In a least one case, they gave a woman a "pain" shot even though she said she didn't need it. On the way out the door, the hospice worker told the family, "if she is not dead in a couple of hours,give me a call." She died within the next two hours. My pastor tells me he has seen this happen in many cases. This is murder.

I know not all hospice personal do these things and am happy to report a second hospice has opened in the area. They do what they can for the patient without interfering with God's plan.

So, feeling torn by my mother's decreasing quality of life, I can understand how a hospice worker could convince your mom to "let go" and not help your dad with the pneumonia. I cannot understand how your mother could cope with her choice, later, when she is alone and no hospice person is influencing her behavior.

I hope, by now, your dad has had proper treatment and you can rest easy, knowing that dad is being cared for.

In the meantime, I will keep watch, by my mother's bed and pray that God's Will, whatever that may be, is done.
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N1K2R3 Jun 2010
Unless your parents are siamese twins, attached at the hip, or somewhere, then each individual parent should be considered a separate patient with his/her own doctor, medical chart, and treatment plan. They have separate social security numbers, and they have separate medical histories, so where did you get the idea that they should be treated together? Hospice is not the determining factor .
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linda09 Jun 2010
oh vicki , i am so sorry for what u and ur dad is going thru .
freezed up when that mom comes in , just aint good at all . ure a grown woman and maybe u could ask her if u could have ur dad into ur home and that u will take care of him ? if you can ?? he prob would rather be in a nursing home than havin to stay with his wife .
i would not want to stay with a wicked witch in the oz .
dont be afraid of ur mother , u need to start gettin a lit rough with her and let her know what ground u stand on and do some growling . put a lit fear in her if u have to . but then again u said she wouldnt let u go see ur dad sometimes . ah girl you could yell at the door and tell her u will report a abuse ! if she doesnt let u in .
the way ur mom treated u , u could turn around and give her a lit taste of it , treat her the way she treated u and maybe she;ll see the new picture and realize it .
i feel for u and ure a sweetheart takin ur dad out and enjoy outside .
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castoff Jun 2010
It is about your Dad. If he can't speak well enough to be understood then you can write down possible senarios on paper and have him place a check near his decision. Keep it short & write large. Give him time & space to decide.
This is not about what you or your mom wants. This is about what he wants.
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I don't think from what I've read the problem is with the Dad, but with his wife who has also made all her children very afraid of her. She is obviously not the kind of mother which "mother's day' celebrates!
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Liam Jun 2010
Does home health visit for your Dad? Keep nagging at Dad until he relents and visits a doctor....I've been through this. He does not realize how sick he is and he wont realize it until its hosptial time or its to late. You cant force him...but you can nag him until he thinks he's going to go nuts...which is what I did...he finally became so weak and out of breath that he could not walk to the bathroom and he wet the bed...THEN he let me take him to the hospital.
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SoAlone Jun 2010
I thought Hospice was there only when you are determined by the doctor that you ARE dying and will die within the next 6 months.

Hospice is for the dying. Not a free service to take care of people who are sick.

If your father is not dying and wants nursing home care or wishes to do anything to stay alive then he should not even have access to Hospice services that perhaps need to go to someone else.

My dad is sick, he is in pain, he is on lots of medications. I FEEL like he should be able to get well. live forever, fight through it. I want him to go to a pain clinic, get more MRIs, try this, try that......

But he is really tired of it and he says he does not want any treatment if he gets pnemonia. He has lost his eyesight to diabetes, he is in pain from some type of brain problem either strokes or tumors the neurologist cannot make up their mind. He has been thru hell with his Nursing Home foot care and now cannot even walk.

Even though I know my dad could live another 10 years of hell with extreme and constant intervention from healthcare. I as his POA will have to honor his wishes and let him go when he can no longer refuse treatment for himself.
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