My mom's nursing home almost killed her with a neglectful medication dosage increase. Should I file a grievance with disciplinary action? - AgingCare.com

My mom's nursing home almost killed her with a neglectful medication dosage increase. Should I file a grievance with disciplinary action?

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My moms nursing home almost killed her with a neglectful medication dosage increase. I have contacted the state and filed a report against the home, tomorrow I will file a report against the nurse pratitioner who made the bad decision. Should I also file a grievance with disciplinary action with the nursing home? If I do file the grievance, what the best way to do this? Should I write up everything I need to explain or just tell them? I have lots of copies of documents from them to make my case.

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This event just happened two weeks ago, I so will be patient and let the state handle it all for now. Thank you for all your advice, I read what you wrote to my mom and we decided to wait on the grievance. Neither of us want money, we just want this to never happen again. Plus she wants to stay there, this sadly is the best nursing facility around this area.

cwillie, the med she was receiving was baclofen. This drug should be slowly increased, by 5mg each 3-5 days. My mom was on 10mg twice a day for only 1.5 days before they doubled her dose to 20mg twice a day. At a medical standpoint, she should have been on 10mg for 2 more days, then have it increased to 15mg if she needed more. They bumped it up too quickly, this caused her to be extremely confused and unable to get out of bed (not normal for her)....and another issue with this medication is the withdrawal symptoms. They stopped giving her the meds right away after her symptoms and didn't wean her off, and that truly may have been the issue that affected her. She was in excruciating pain from muscle spasms and it basically wore her body out and she was completely lethargic (unable to swallow) for three days after.
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I'm not a health care provider and I have no experience with the medication given to your mother, I do have a questions though. Was the dosage increased to an amount that is documented to be a toxic level, or did your mother suffer a side effect that could not have reasonably been foreseen? There is a huge difference between making a mistake and being negligent.
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I will write more later. But what I would like is for this to not happen again to another resident. Not necessarily nursing licenses revolked, just for people to correctly do their jobs.
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EB, first I am so sorry that your mother and you have gone through all this. You have filed the report against both the nursing home and the nurse, which will be investigated by the proper state agencies. The agency you reported to should have given you a timeline for the investigation. Are you willing to wait for the report's findings before you file a grievance? Is there a mandatory period that you have to wait for the investigation to proceed before you can file a grievance? Some states have a mandatory period you have to wait before you proceed to next level.
Also, is your mother still at the same nursing home that you have such problems with? Are you prepared to move her if the findings don't go your way? What are you looking for out of this? Preventing a problem for someone else - monetary damages for your mother - the nurse to lose her license and her job - censure by the state - someone to say "they were wrong" and a plan of action to prevent in future - the nursing home to lose its license? The answers you get will differ depending on what your ultimate goal is. If you want money, get a lawyer involved NOW. They will be able to tell you how strong your mother's case is and how likely recovery will be. Medical malpractice attorneys have lots of experience with evidence, courts, and access to experts that you do not. If you want the nurse's license revoked, filing a grievance before the report/investigation is done may have to wait for the results of report. If you want the nursing home closed, be prepared for an ugly fight, SEE A LAWYER, and make sure that your documentation says what you think it does. Nursing homes (especially in a chain) have lawyers that can respond to your complaints with actions of their own. I understand your anger, but there is an investigation process that will have to be followed. If your mother is still there, the atmosphere will be even worse for you both. If you are out to punish them, be prepared for the possibility of having to move her to another facility - if she's on Medicaid that may be difficult - and your relationship with nursing home and report on it will be a matter of public record for any new place. You are advocating actively for her, you are having oversight agencies check into the problem. Don't let your anger and frustration rush your actions so that you cause more problems trying to get this one addressed. Your mother is lucky to have you on her side. I've had to learn to follow the state rules with a son with autism and public school system - getting what you want and people who cause harm removed can be close to impossible so you work the system to get what you want with the least harm to your loved one. Sorry about the book:)
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