Skilled Nursing or Home Care. Which is easier for Caregiver?
Here it is in a nutshell:
In Skilled Nursing:
*husband with moderate dementia had a stroke last Aug. Left him completely paralyzed with left arm and leg. His dementia is getting worse. He must now also drink thickened liquids and keep to a soft mechanical diet.
*constant begging / prodding to "go home"
*difficult for wife to leave at end of day
*wife spent many hours / day there keeping him company
*wife is 88 yrs. old....still driving, but has health problems of her own
still very much in full control of her mind, emotions, etc.
*wife would leave to go home at night, husband would call their house several
times before she would even get there to see if she knew where he was, if
she was coming back, to say good night, etc.
* VERY wearing on 88 yr. old wife; she was not able to find time to take care of other business such as caring for the home, or making and attending her own doctor's appts., etc. Felt she could not just "leave him unattended" at the facility. She always feared they would not catch something or make mistakes in his care. (not unfounded....the facility DID make several mistakes during his stay there, although I think that happens no matter where you are)
*Wife decides it couldn't be any worse to move him back home. At least then she wouldn't be making several trips to see him each day and then the constant begging to come home would stop.
* Because he has just enough mobility on his right side to wiggle around, he is a constant fall risk.
* She is 88, small, and frail. She cannot help him physically or get him up when / if he falls.
* She has hired 24 hr. care from a home health agency. She requests only male caregivers, as it takes a man to do the physical transferring of him. (200 lbs. and 6 ft tall)
*Male caregivers have been lazy and rarely perform all the required duties of the position and, believe this or not....would actually ASK HER to come help them move him when he needed to be moved! Eventually some of his meds starting disappearing, as well.
* By now, we have had to let several of the caregivers go for reasons like the above. We are worried that the agency will run out of male caregivers that can be sent for the job, and then if any of them will actually DO what they are supposed to do!
* The home healthcare is costing much more than the skilled nursing facility and yet, Wife is not free to go about taking care of business, make her appts. etc........when she leaves, the caregivers either nap, watch tv, surf the internet, etc....and even when she writes down tasks that should be done before she gets back, they always have an excuse for not doing it.
At this point I am wondering: Should we just move him back to a facility, save some $$$$, brace for the constant barrage of " Where's my wife? When can I go home?", etc and hope she learns to manage it, or keep doing this song and dance with home healthcare? Just wondering what others may have done in this situation?