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My daddy and my aunt lived together for 30 years. They moved together into a memory care unit when my daddy hit FAST stage 6b. My aunt had no memory problems. I called my daddy every evening. My aunt answered the phone for him, and did lots of things like nagging him to drink, eat the food on his plate, get up and walk, talk to me on the phone. My aunt just died of Covid. I've been in contact with the assisted living place to help get Daddy on the phone. But it seems he is sleeping most of the time. When I did get to talk to him, he sounded vague; like he didn't know who he was. I'm use to him believing I'm still at boarding school, and he is in a hotel (he was a yacht racing captain) This is new. The memory unit said it would be too difficult for me to arrange to talk to him every day. I can't go in because he has "asymptomatic Covid 19", blood oxygen 93. I worry he isn't going to eat or drink without being nagged and I understand why the staff can't do that. Any advice?

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It’s very evident you love your daddy very much... Other than the responses below, I only have 1 question to ask.... why would you want to nag or force a 95 year old man to do what you want him to do? I used to do this with my father..he is almost 90 and doesn’t eat much, sleeps most of the time, and is very well taken care of. He told me that he is tired, ready to go, and leave him alone. So I stopped nagging him, and he does just fine. He loves breakfast food so that is what he eats for breakfast , lunch and dinner. We respect his decisions, and it is working out. When we were able to visit, we took in milk shakes and cheeseburgers, and he would eat. If it makes him happy at this point in his life, then I honor that.
Maybe you could do something similar with the facility he is in. Best wishes to you.
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OkieGranny Jun 28, 2020
Great answer. Nobody lives forever and 95 is a good run. Yes, we would all love to have the people we care about stick around, but at some point we all die. Let him enjoy what time he has left and have some peace and quiet in whatever time he has. There is no way that what he eats or does now (other than a physical accident) will have an effect on his lifespan.
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We just went through the covid thing with my MIL in her LTC facility. At one point they had 1 nurse for 16 covid patients because as the staff got sick they had to be quarantined for 2 weeks and they didn't have enough/any subs. Also, every time they went into her room to do the briefest thing, they needed to change their PPE. The most you can do is call the nurse's station every day (or twice a day) for an update on your dad. ALso be sure to praise that staff for what they are doing, even send them something to show appreciation. I'm so sorry that you can't be with your dad but many are in the same boat. My MIL did recover fully from covid but it took 4 weeks and we still can't get in to see her. Hang in there!
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A blood oxygen of 93% is not good for whatever reason. Is he receiving oxygen
therapy? Most (all?) dementia patients won't keep oxygen mask or nasal cannula
on. There comes a time when the priorities of Safety, Comfort and Prayer become
the focus. I feel your pain and am wishing you the strength needed for this.
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K43d35 Jun 25, 2020
No he is not. My cousin, who has medical power of attorney, tells me that the LTC facility says "his blood oxygen levels aren't that bad". I disagree, but I have little power in this situation.
My dad, back when my mom died, saw the agony I went through being my mother's medical POA, (family fighting about what to do and taking their grief and anger out on me) decided that he would give medical POA to someone not in line to inherit.
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My husband is in memory care and both my mother and step-mother are in assisted living facilities. My heart goes out to you. The caregivers are all overworked - but our only allies. You must be his advocate. Unfortunately only the squeaky wheel gets greased. You must follow-up with he staff regularly but with kindness and thankfulness. Become their friend. Let them know they are appreciated. It is a known fact that this will help ensure his best care and remind them that they now need to step in more than they had to before. They probably don't even know how much of their job your aunt was performing. Who knows, maybe even help you get more telephone calls with him! God bless all of you.
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Have his Dr. put it in writing his feeding schedule and drinking schedule.
Can you visit the memory unit through the window?
My concern would be how did COVID get in?
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IsntEasy Jun 28, 2020
Covid has gotten in everywhere. There is no practical way to prevent it. Staff has to go home, go grocery shopping, etc. Residents go out to ER, doc visits, etc. That's how it happens. BUT, I'd be concerned if an AL, SNF, MC wasn't VERY aggressive about tracking cases and quarantining staff and residents. Make sure the community where your loved ones live pays their staff during quarantine. Make sure residents who return from the ER or rehab are isolated and tested.
Communities should be testing all residents and staff regularly.

If you can avoid it, DON'T insist that your loved one go out to the ER. That's how a lot of cases get in.

Shared rooms are another issue. Communities that have lots of shared suites are proving to have lots of spread.
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I lost my wife at when a well known LTC facility in Babylon NY when she caught the virus when Governor of NY was allowing patients that still  tested positive from Hospital to be transferred   to assisted living residence. He knew that they did have enough PPE and were not able to follow Prodi call.

He made sure his mother was taken out of one of these nursing home before he put the order in have positive patients sent to the LTC facilities. He would not have transferred positive patients to LTC nursing  if he did have immunity from prosecution.   

He had the javits center and the navy medical ship comfort available. yet he did not move these positive patients  causing and, infecting of over  50,000 poor senior citizen to contract the virus, in assisted living homes which  included my wife of 52 year of marriage she passed away because of his actions. I don't know how he can  live with what he has done to all of us that lost love ones. Please reach out to your political leaders and let them know what and how you feel about his actions and inactions taken to our loved ones by governor Coumo

I was not able to see her before she passed away and was not able  to have funeral service in a temple before she died suffering from  this terrible virus This is devastating to me any my family.  Please he has to answer for he has done to our families.
.
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Gnu262 Jun 28, 2020
The ‘Buck’ stops with the President of the United States
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Another thought, make friends or at least make yourself known to immediate manager, Director of Nursing, and Director of the entire facility. Let them know they are appreciated and who your father is. When the staff is ware that you are known by and in communication with management, his care will almost always get more attention.
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DrBenshir Jun 28, 2020
You are so right! When the staff knows the family is involved and they know who you are your loved ones get better attention. This is true for hospitals, SNFs, ILF, AS and MC.

ML4444, call and ask if Dad is on oxygen at night. If not, why not? They can come in and check him during the night to see how low he goes. OSA is very common in the elderly.

If he isn't eating and drinking ask them why? Does he need help with self-feeding? Has he had stroke, so that he lacks the coordination or can't see where the food is on his plate? Is he having swallowing difficulty?

Dad is depressed. He lost his best friend and care-giver. He may be too tired to keep pushing himself. Send him cards and letters if he won't come to the phone, and call to make sure someone has read them to him. At least he will know you are there and that you love him. Ultimately, that is the most important thing you can do.
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It would be worth finding out in what position he sleeps. If he sleeps on his stomach, his blood oxygen levels may increase (according to discoveries a couple months ago regarding COVID patients).
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K43d35 Jun 29, 2020
He is a side sleeper. He lays on his right side.
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K43
i am sorry for the loss of your aunt. Your dad was truly blessed to have such a loving sister by his side for so many years and his presence must have given her purpose.
I can appreciate your concern that his ability and desire to survive Is being diminished by her loss.
Life is so full of ironies when it comes to who lives and who dies and in what order.
I can’t imagine what his needs are now. Perhaps to sleep is what is needed to recover.
Here is an article on O2. It indicates treatment is a concern when less that 90.

https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/hcp/pulseoximetry.pdf
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Imho, perhaps you could speak to the head of the MC unit.
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