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i got a doctor a few weeks ago for my father who referred him to hospital as he doesnt eat very well sometimes and was losing weight only after a few weeks they have told me i cannot take my father home again as he has dementia which i do not agree with my father desperetaly wants home now and i have said i will live with him so he has 24hr care at home which he had anyway as my daughter was living at home with him the only thing i can think of is going for gaurdianship of my father but dont know how to go about it i am unemployed also so i dont know where to get a layer who deals with unemployed is there anyway you could give me some advise please Dianne Mccormack

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I completely disagree. I find it egregious to advise on conjecture and not on evidence. Dianne, is if VERY important that you obtain his medical records. HIPPA allows the patient or patient appointed representative, i.e. Power of Attorney, to obtain the hospital medical records. Within in the contents you can view all tests and medications provided to your father. You can also see who reported it, the date and times (in most cases). Information is critical to assess your next step. You are always welcome to contact us at patientconsumeradvocate IF you need assistance obtaining guardianship OR further recourse. Since your post was dated circa 2013, I hope everything went well for you. If not, we are available to help at no charge.
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Diane, I wonder if you can be completely objective about your father's condition.

Most doctors would not hospitalize someone who didn't eat well sometimes, and who was losing a little weight. They would try other solutions first. So I suspect the weight loss was significant and dangerous and/or the doctor noted other medical problems.

Hospitals (or doctors) do not pronounce on a whim that someone has dementia. I assume a lot of testing was done, especially since he was in for a few weeks. Was he in a psych ward, do you know? Have you asked the doctor for the reasons/evidence for the diagnosis of dementia?

Many persons with dementia do live at home with their loved ones. My mother lives with my sister. My husband lived at home with me for ten years. So even if your father does have dementia, that in itself would not prevent him from going home, if there is care there. Have you talked to the doctor and/or the hospital social worker about the reasons they are recommending that he not go home? What do they say?

Where are they recommending that your father go? Or are they simply not ready to discharge him at all yet? Are they still doing treatment? Trying to come up with appropriate drugs? Hospitals are super careful not to keep patients beyond the time insurance will pay, and insurance won't pay if there is not evidence of providing care that can only be provided in a hospital.

I don't think that the hospital needs your consent to keep him there, if there is medical reason not to discharge him yet.

I don't think that the hospital can prevent him from going home when they are ready to release him. They may give you other recommendations.

Most people dislike being in hospitals and most of us want to go home as soon as possible. That doesn't mean going home would be good for us. Most rational people can understand that and grit their teeth and bear it. Someone with impaired reasoning may have a very hard time accepting that they need further treatment. "I want to go home!" is a very common refrain. In fact, people with dementia often say that, over and over, when they ARE home.

Make an appointment and have a heart-to-heart visit with the hospital social worker. Try to listen objectively to why your father is still in the hospital. Also ask about what kind of care he will need when he is discharged. (This will not cost you.)

Before you worry about getting a lawyer, gather as much information as you can about Dad's condition and the hospital's position. Take notes. Come back here and discuss it again.

Dianne, I am sure you are very worried about your father and want to do what is best for him. It is heart-breaking to hear someone you love begging to go home. All this understandable worry may be keeping you from being objective about what would be best for him. Give it a another shot at understanding what the doctor and hospital are trying to accomplish, before you take expensive steps.
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