Mom's been in nursing facility for 6 months. I can't get the doctor (not on site) to call me. What do I do?

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I just want to talk to the doctor! I've been leaving ?s for him since January.

There are some issues with physical and mental health that I want to discuss with the doctor before committing to take her home. I have had four letters from me - short, sweet, with specific questions - put in her chart. Each time the nurse approaches me defensively and says she can address my questions and that it's hard to get the doctor to call me because he has his own practice. Without connecting with the doctor, the decision to move her cannot be made.

What is the experience in other nursing facilities? If there is no doctor on the site do you have to go through a nurse for everything?

I can see not talking to the doctor weekly or bi-monthly ... but it's been 5-1/2 months since I have seen or talked to him.

I don't want to get "pushy" or out of line, but mom won't speak up for herself and I am POA. If I alienate the staff, I feel they could make things more uncomfortable.

Thanks!

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ba8alou, I think I love you. A few times now our situations have been so similar and your comments again are spot on. Along with 3pinkroses, it seems like others are having similar experiences.
With the nurses, it's like I'm offending them when I say I want to consult the doctor. Maybe its just a bad set-up, since her doc does have his own full time practice. Unfortunately, this situation has impacted the likelihood of bringing her home.
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Thanks everyone.
The POA is on file. As well, they had me become payee on the SS check, so they don't share info. with her, knowing that she wouldn't understand it all. I met the doctor in person (by chance) on the third day she was there and we talked quite a while. I am the only living relative there is so as far as communicating it's me or no one, and they know that.
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I agree, I think they don't have a POA on file. Write a nice letter and enclose a copy of the POA inside making sure that it covers health issues. Ask the front office if they have one, and fax it over.

However, I think doc has done a good job answering your question, if you should take your mother home. Without connecting you can't. He's answering you - you should not.
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I have a similar concern and just addressed it with NH today. Mom has been in NH since January and I have had one rushed conversation with doc. All other conversations have been in family conferences with therapists and director of sw. I've just sent an email to the director of nursing to inquire about doc's (and staff's) opinion about mom's dx of dementia. She seems to be stable, there does not seem to be progression. I want to know what doctor thinks; should be take her out to see the neurologist again? When I asked this in the care meeting, it was interpreted as "oh, you want us to bring in a neurologist?" There seems to be no clear route to getting answers, including those as simple as "how often is mom's bp taken" I'm told "her bp is fine". that wasn't the question!!!
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I had a similar problem when my mother was living at a NH. The nurses there were more accommodating and understood the importance of talking to the doctor. When a patient is appointed a doctor at a NH facility; it is difficult to get hold of them; but I found I had to be persistent. I actually called him at his private practice where he continued practicing along with his NH responsibilities. If he was not available, I left messages until he returned my call. It is not acceptable for a nurse to be defensive about you wanting to talk to the doctor. You have every right to expect a call from the doctor. Good luck with this and take care.
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When she checked in she should have signed a Health Care Proxy naming you as the person to contact and giving you access to her file. If she didn't do that, he won't call you. You can probably find answers here. Go up to the "search site" box and type in a condition or a drug name and Q&A will pop up. Or just ask us.
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