Isn't it illegal for a nursing home to block important records in a patient's care?

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Before major surgery my mother changed her health care DPOA to me. Due to complications, she wound up in a nursing home. I requested that they contact Brigham and Woman's Hospital to obtain a copy of that new DPOA record. The woman in charge erroneously sent the request back to my husband. He told her that and asked her to contact the hospital!

The next I heard was that she had 'tried many times' and that the document didn't exist. Two social workers stood "in my face," yelling repeatedly that there was no such thing as the document I requested. In the meantime, my mother's health was diminishing by the moment. Brigham and Women's instructed me to have a nurse request it because that would bypass the social workers and also be attended to that night.

Unfortunately, the social worker heard of this, and told that young nurse that she could not, by any means, make the request. BWH keeps impeccable records and has since reported that there have been no -- as in zero -- requests from that rest home for my mother's health care proxy. That social worker's one "attempt" was to receive my husband's request, to be forwarded to BWH by her, which included a letter already written out and the fax number she needed to send it to. As previously stated, she faxed the whole thing right back to him.

And that was it. That represents the department's "many, many attempts" to provide paperwork important to my mother's care. I finally called on another medical person (outside the rest home) to make the request; she had the document in one hour. I had decided to let this all go but am currently seeing similar dynamics at play and need to take a stand. I do think what they did, given the urgency of my mother's care, was illegal.

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I agree with gladmhere above..... make copies and keep them on-hand so that any medical center can scan it and have it on record. Even the attorney who drew up the Power of Attorney could have scanned it to the nursing home.
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You need many copies, as well as one scanned into your phone.
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Mary, you need to have a copy of the POA with you at all times. You should have been able to provide the copy. So, if you do not have a copy, get one.
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In my opinion, the Social Worker overstepped her boundaries and probably has no clue how to send or receive a fax. "many many attempts" translates as "clueless". You would be amazed how many people are technically challenged by a fax machine.
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