The nursing home gave my Mom a male roommate. Is this considered normal procedure?

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My mom has been under hospice care for 6+ months now. I needed some 'time out' and decided to take advantage of the respite care program. When we were checking out the NH it seemed OK, clean,etc. but a bit Spartan. There were no beds available closer to home at the time she needed to go, even though I had given notice to the hospice authorities more than a months' notice. Mom had to be transported more than 35 miles from home (by ambulance) so they had her within a mile of their office.

I found out afterwards from both mom and her aide that the roommate she was assigned to was a man. Apparently his wife visited all hours, running in and out on all sorts of errands.

My mom has been a 'closet lesbian' all of her mature life and was deeply disturbed by this arrangement. She would be totally mortified if I had told the admin about her 'preference', so we said nothing. Is it considered normal to have mixed-sex roommates in a NH?

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UPDATE. I went and checked out the nursing home situation in person. Also rechecked with both the aide and the nurses. THANK GOD it is a case of mistaken identity. The roommate was a woman. She had almost no hair, a flat chest and a deep raspy voice. The woman that mom said had been running in and out on various chores was apparently the woman's daughter. Ain't dementia fun. I thought she was a man at first, too.

NH is clear and very cooperative. Also scored big points with us by invoking HIPPA regulations about disclosure. Good to know for sure. That doesn't mean that the SW at hospice is off the hook, tho.

Thanks to you guys for helping to straighten out the facts. I greatly appreciate it!
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Yes. Total 24/7, which I am supplying. I get relief time thanks to my husband and a close friend who can handle mama's behavior.. Her NH care will have to be a skilled care dementia unit, as she is late stage 4, cannot make rational decisions, cannot stand by herself and is now totally incontinent. She has lucid periods when she first wakes up but loses herself as the day progresses. By bedtime she doesn't recognize me or know where she is. Talking is difficult for her, and she has never been a social person. I can see a rapid decline this time. Her memories of the NH visit are fading, so her distress is lessened.

The hospice doctor has only visited once, just before she went to respite care. Once in 6 months. Her didn't actually DO anything, just stood around and watched the head of nursing go through her act. Mom needs a thorough reassessment.
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I'm glad your mom is doing better. In reading your description of her operating within her home upthread, I'm wondering how your mom will continue to manage at home. Has she received an assessment to see what level of care she needs?
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Fortunately, mama is now at home again.

We have finally located a local attorney who is versed in elder law. I'll be speaking with him SOON (having to arrange for extra babysitter so I can go), as we have some prior issues to resolve.

Just got a payment notice from Medicare and insurance. It looks like the company has been paid increasing amounts each month for what little they do. We are averaging 12 monthly visits from the nurse and aide (total for both), plus a visit from the chaplain. The nurses take her blood pressure, pulse and sometimes temperature; ask a few questions about pain and bowels, then spend 10-20 minutes writing up a report. The aide DOES work her tail off. BUT...this justifies a $6,000.00 a month payment? I know that there is considerable overhead involved, but the care given (or not given) doesn't justify the money. I'm told that it is all legal. Glad it's not self-pay. I cringe thinking about what the 5 days in respite will be billed at!

My husband will be visiting with 2 other hospices at the end of this week. As soon as I get a substitute for the day, I'm off to San Antonio to see the folks at DADS (Department of Aging and Disability Services). My referral there said they could help with making official complaints. Yes, a major change is in order.

Thanks to all of you for your suggestions and support! Hugs!
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I have never heard of such a thing and find it quite inappropriate. I would demand that they change her situation IMMEDIATELY. Unfortunately, one sometimes has to make a noisy fuss to fix a problem, before one gets the desired response!
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I understand that some folks in the Hospice organization think the sw is doing a good job. This does not mean that you should not report her innapropriate behavior toward your mom.
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This might be a bit lengthy-why we don't go through the social worker or head nurse.

The last time the social worker was here, she threw a major fit. A lot of little things that she blew all out of proportion and either she or the head nurse filed neglect charges 'in Grace's behalf' with Adult Protective Services. It was claimed that I was 'severely neglecting the patient' and that the house was unlivable.

Firstly, she loathes cats. Mom has one inside, 19 outside as a feral colony (vaccinated, neutered, etc.). SOMEONE claimed that all the cats were indoors with her (ugh). SW is also a self-acclaimed neat freak. Well, mom WAS a hoarder, something that can't be cleaned up overnight and a behavior that is hard to change. SW loudly declared that the whole house needed hot soap and water IMMEDIATELY and that the toilet was a health hazard. We have well water that has rust and calcium that stains the plumbing fixtures. Bleach and scrubbing will not remove it.

There is no stove in the house. Mama thought the pilot light was a fire hazard and her phobia was bad enough that we completely removed the stove (electric, by the way). I cook all of my mom's meals at home and use a microwave to reheat.

The house has a large unfinished addition that was never painted, and we are still doing repairs to the interior. SW repeatedly referred to mom's house as a "Hovel".

There is a small sign over the bathroom basin that I made to remind mom not to let water run in the sink for the cat to drink. It reads, 'No water here' and has a cat picture. SOMEONE reported that there was no running water in the house.

Mom prefers a bedside bath, as she doesn't like water on her head and is afraid of falling climbing over the tub side. SOMEONE reported that we wouldn't allow her to take a proper shower.

SOMEONE reported that we were keeping mom's meds from her. No, the daily pill box is kept out of reach on top of the fridge for safety purposes. I give her the meds exactly as directed.

There is a bedside commode next to mom's bed. It has never been used. SOMEONE reported that we wouldn't let her use the toilet and forced her to use the portable all the time. There was a long list of other even more petty accusations. SW was royally pissed when mom invited her to leave and not come back.

After the APS inspector visited, she left shaking her head. Case has been closed.

Other than causing major confusion with new nurses, changing equipment companies etc, the main reason I haven't changed services is that my mom is a bear to bathe and get dentures away from. The aide that does this for me is an absolute angel and is the best I've seen with cleaning mom. Since mom will be moving to a NH after the first of the year, I figured it would be best to keep things as they are for now.

The last nurse (mom has had 6 to see her) told me that even though the SW has no bedside manners, she is the darling of the director as she gets results. There is a large turnover of nurses. The good ones don't stay long. All I can say is, this is rural Texas.

It looks like the closest GOOD NH and hospice will be up in San Antonio, too far for a daily commute for me. There is a new NH due to open in January nearby that I have an appointment to check out this coming Friday.

If I were to report the SW to the licensing board, what would my claim be? I was told that the SW was doing her job, and doing it well.
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"The hospice social worker threatened to move her to a nursing home"???? If you heard this with your own ears, that is certainly cause to report her to her State Licensing Board. I would be sending certified letters to the Hospice CEO, the nursing home ombudsman and the state licensing authority.
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I've already tried that TWICE. Was told she was out of the office, and there would be a call back as soon as she was free. No answers yet; the main office is in Floresville (TX), which was hit by a tornado in last weekends storms. I'll likely be visiting the office in person this week as soon as I can arrange a sitter.

We are looking for a 'decent' NH to move mom to on January. Unfortunately there are few options this far into the sticks. Yes, I will definitely check the roommate situation out beforehand!
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Call the office manager at Hospice and make it very clear to them that this cannot happen again. Be straight out with them and tell them why this was so upsetting to her. Put all the cards on the table.
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