Two weeks ago, my father was driving, cutting grass, weed whacking, managing all aspects of a weekly church newsletter. Then his doctor talked him into going into hospital for "constipation."
In the first week, my father was passed around like a football from doctor to doctor. Then on that Friday, a 3rd resident tried to release him to drive home, high on opiates, in rush hour traffic, after he'd been in bed a week - (did I mention he was 93?.
Got that half-blocked - he got a ride but still was forced home. Went home and fell five times in the first 18 hours home!
Back to hospital. Still no "decisions" in the hospital....He's "fine" (other than severe constipation) through Weds night - Tuesday they got some bowel moving and he's feeling better. They take him off pain meds.
Weds. night he has a bad fall - the hospital doesn't find him for a possibly hours - 4-1/2 hour window from when he was "fine" to when he was found. The nurse finds him naked crawling on the floor "trying to get ready for work." (apparently he had been dreaming - sleeping in a chair, but the nurse writes down "confused", and "hallucinating". Then she calls me and I asked her if she "really had enough information to decide that was accurate - if he was asleep and tried to sleep walk - that doesn't give him a diagnosis of 'confused' / hallucinating'!
Summary: Monday - Weds night: Looking for Skilled Rehab - they plan to release him with laxatives.
Thurs - Friday: His speech is garbled and they don't know why - it doesn't seem they are running tests.
Friday: Neighbor overhears nurse upset my father was given steroids when he is diabetic. Numbers shot from around 166 to high 400s. Calls me, I call nurse. She is apologizing and telling me what happened. I call primary doc.
Saturday: Get a call - "Should we get his file from our other branch hospital?" I'd been asking them to do this for two weeks!
Father given 24 hours to live!
Told they want to line up "hospice" just in case. I get a call from hospice almost immediately they want to pick him up and take him to the worst hospital in the city to leave him to die. I said "NO" Let him die where he is if he is in the process now!"
Two hours later he died. 4pm Saturday EST.
Hospital and primary doc I would say are "freaking out" because I want an independent autopsy. They wanted his body out of there on Saturday. I said "wait til Monday."
HERE'S WHERE I NEED HELP!
I'm getting told that to do an independent autopsy, that it costs $2500- 5000! There's no money for this from our side.He's broke and so am I after 3-1/2 years of caring for his full time needs.
Is this "normal"? It seems the state - or "system" - block access to justice unless you are wealthy enough to buy this. Coroner's office said they can't do "criminal negligence" by hospital cases. (free - have to go to university to do it and it costs)
"I NEED ADVICE.....ANYONE HAVE ANY??? I've gone from Skilled Rehab contract reviewing, to nursing homes research, to discussing hospice care, to now looking for an independent autopsy - in 6 (six) days!
My head is spinning."
My father wanted to be donated to science following death. He didn't want a funeral and wanted cremation. So, for him, the "religious aspect" isn't entering into decision making. I believe he would want to improve care and help save lives.
Any ideas on "what to do"? CLOCK IS TICKING!!! NEED TO MAKE DECISION ASAP!