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My 85 year old father has been at a Board and Care for 30 days and recently he suspected they drugged him because he believed he slept for two days. Also, my brother said he was concerned because when he spoke to my father by phone my father was having difficulty staying awake and was slurring his words. Immediately the next day my brother moved him from the Board and Care but not without literally a big scene by the male caregiver. The male caregiver laid across my fathers chair trying to prevent him from removing any of my fathers items along with yelling and grabbing my brother!
Owner of home called me with a different version saying my brother caused the scene and reminded me of the 30 day notice in the contract and that I would owe next months rent.

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Thank You Garden Artist! your reply was very detailed and informative. At this point I am really more concerned about my dad and hoping there are no immediate or long term effects from taking the wrong medication. It's good to have the information on where to go if we need to pursue it in a legal way.
Also Babalou thank you for your suggestion.
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National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. And thanks for answering my earlier question about State licensing.
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Right now your cause of action is limited to the administration of an erroneous medication and the ancillary activities preceding and following that decision. A more fully developed cause would include the immediate, short and potential long term consequences.

It could also include emotional damages, for your father (and for you if you sue as an additional plaintiff).

The first thing to do is what you're already doing - exploring and identifying the source of the mistake.

I doubt if any med mal attorney would take the case as it is in its infancy now.

Good med mal attorneys in my area will get the medical records from all parties in question and have them reviewed by an independent physician, or sometimes a nurse practitioner or nurse on staff at the law firm. They need corroboration from medical personnel, including one willing to testify if a case goes to trial.

Statutory requirements to prove med mal probably differ from state to state, so you'll have to inquire of an attorney what would be necessary to pursue this kind of claim in California.

Another aspect is the type of juries expected to serve in different counties. Blue collar and working class counties are generally better for claims awards than rich areas dominated by business people, including doctors.

If you do want to explore the possibility of legal action, search the California or Orange County Bar Association directory for names of med mal attorneys. Review their websites, read their publications, then contact the ones that seem to be closest to your situation (some specialize in infant birth defects, others in different areas of med mal, etc. ).

But remember that this is a field governed by business practices as well as any other. If an attorney doesn't think there's a case or chance of recovery, you'll likely be told. They won't spend money and time if they don't see a case with recovery potetial, although some attorneys will file a med mal suit simply for nuisance value to get the med mal carriers to pay just to dismiss the suit and resolve the issue.

It's not necessarily fair to the individuals who've suffered, but that's the way the practice area operates. Law is a business after all.

I do hope though that you learn there are no long term effects for your father; that would be better news than getting the go-ahead from an attorney.
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Thank you igloo for comments. Could you tell me what NAELA stands for? I am not exactly sure where to start. The only thing I have done so far is communicated with his doctors nurse. She was the one checking with the pharmacy and then forwarding the information to me. The nurse still hasn't responded to my question about how the wrong medication will/did affect my dad's health.
I've looked on the eldercare/abuse site and also on the Legal aide society of Orange County just to try and get and idea on what I could do.
Does anyone have any suggestions?
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Sorry Babalou I just saw your question. Yes, the board and care home was a state licensed home. I checked their facility record when I was looking for a place for him.
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You did what was needed to ensure dad went into a safe & secure facility.
Board & care did not do what they needed to do to make that happen.

At 85, dad coukd be with us for another decade. And that decade could be adversely affected by the incompetent, etc of the facility. I'd get an atty ASAP to send off a letter on all this ASAP. No more you speaking to anybody. At best, it will pay for a year or so of another facility or at least, several months of private paid caregivers for your dad at home. A NAELA atty probably won't do this type of legal but they will know of a malpractice atty who will. good luck.
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Thank you everyone! again, very good suggestions.
Still trying to find out all the details. Not sure if the doctors office emailed or called it in so have to confirm that. I gave the home a copy of the medications along with all the forms that they required when my dad moved in. The doctor had printed out that list for me back in November which are the same meds he is currently on. I believe the doctors office also sent a list to the home when he moved in. The owner/administrator of the home told me it was very important for her to have that list because the Department of Social Services in California require her to have that and they do random inspections of homes. Also need to find out the repercussions of him being on it for a month. I did read that a person that has glaucoma is NOT suppose to be on it and of course my dad has glaucoma.
So mad!
My brother has stepped up to check and help my dad but I also arranged for his last care giver to come in and help. I am hoping that my dad will still be open to finding another place for him but at this point it's not only him that will be wary, I too have a great concern for a safe place.
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What a horrific mistake. I hope you can get to the bottom of it and assign the error to the proper persons.

I wouldn't let it distract me though from your father's current care. It sounds like he really does need assistance and supervision in light of his health conditions. I would think that he would not be in a position to administer and monitor his own medications at home. That would be my most pressing concern at this point.
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It's my understanding that prescriptions are either faxed to a pharmacy or submitted electronically, I assume by e-mail. It would help to get a copy of what the pharmacy received. If the doctor's office in fact just called in the script, that could be the problem right there.

If that particular med was listed in the med list at the board and care facility, staff should absolutely have double checked it before administering it. If it hadn't been given before, presumably it wouldn't have been on the med list. The question then would be whether or not the staff who received and administered it realized it wasn't appropriate for the situation.

I agree with AKDaughter; her suggestion of resolution is a practical and wise one.

If you're thinking about a higher level of action, such as legal, against the board and care facility, I doubt if this one incident would support litigation. I'm just mentioning this because many people would be thinking along that line.
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The first priority is to get dad back on the correct meds and into a good care situation. After that, it would seem that you have ample reason not to owe the 30 days rent. Get a copy of whatever the doctor's office sent to the pharmacy and to the care home. There was definitely an error here, but now you need to determine who made the error. It could have been the doctor's office, or the pharmacy and the care home. If the correct information was sent by the doctor's office to the pharmacy and to the care home, then you might ask for a meeting with the pharmacy manager and the manager of the care home. Offer to let the matter drop without further action or publicity if they will forgo the 30 day's rent. Get whatever they agree to do in writing.

If the error was made at the doctor's office, ask them to pay the 30 days. If they decline, you may need to contact an attorney who will in turn contact the malpractice carrier for the doctor and his staff.
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Is this state licensed home?
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Oh yikes! That certainly changes things! Oh my! What is the home's attitude about this now?
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Dadcaregiver, how does the doctor's office get the prescriptions to the pharmacy? I thought, by law they had to be faxed. How did the care home get his list of prescriptions? Who provided that information? Was that information correct?

When moving a person with dementia a sudden, very steep decline is usually observed. That was part of what was going on with dad. The care home while they should have checked the meds with whatever list they had, is it possible that the list was incorrect that the doctor sent over?
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New update on what we have found out about the medication:
Discovered today that an incorrect and not prescribed by my father's doctor was in the packets that the board and care home gave to brother. After further investigation the pharmacy that the board and care uses got the prescription wrong! Instead of Chlorthalidone ( is an oral antihypertensive/diuretic) they sent Chlorpromazine (is an anti-psychotic medication! It changes the actions of chemicals in your brain)
My dad's doctor's nurse called the pharmacy and they said they misunderstood her order and said they were sorry....SORRY?!! seriously?!!
Also, the nurse said the board and care had a list of the medications and should have doubled checked the medication that was sent by the pharmacy before giving them to my dad.
My dad has been on them for a month!
At this point I need to find out how much this has affected my dad's health since he is also on blood thinners, diabetic medication, eye medication for glaucoma and heart medication. Also, wondering how much this has affected his mood and temperament.
I am so upset!!
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I think it's great you have found this site. Check the questions asked and news feed every day and I bet you will find many of the same questions you have being actively discussed here. Your siblings also need to take up to educating themselves by reading on this website, too. Seniors, especially with mild cognitive decline, can be extremely manipulative, suspicious, accusing, and stubborn, and illogical about their capabilities. They will do anything to get back 'home'. Your family may have been sucked in to this situation. If that could be the case, the next thing Dad will do is refuse any help from outsiders, verbally abuse family and accuse family of stealing, then progress to falling, getting lost, getting repeated episodes of food poisoning and driving the neighbors crazy with worry. I *hope* this is not what is going on for you. But Babalou could be right.
It's a stage that's very hard to watch. But harder still to actually be helpful.
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I still trying to figure out why, if your brother thought that your dad had been "drugged" he didn't take him to the ER, not for "proof" but to get treatment. What I sadly suspect is that dad is preying on your brother's sympathies and used him to get "home". You may need to leave dad to his own devices, with whatever outside caregivers he will allow, until "something" happens, like a fall.

The important groundwork that you need to do at this point, is to get your brother educated and accepting of your father's cognitive issues, and what that looks like. And what "mental status changes" look like and that they are cause to call the treating doctor, not accept Dad's explanation for what's causing them.
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Thanks pamstegma for clarifying real proof. I suspected that he would have to be tested for drugs to confirm our suspicion but I guess partially I was also in denial that someone would actually do that.
I thought that it was very difficult to confirm that a person had a stroke? Taking him to the doctors tomorrow so maybe they can answer more questions for me.
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I agree with you Staceyb he really shouldn't be at home. My brother decided to move him back. I had planned on taking him to see an assisted living community near my house that I had toured and have talk multiple times to the advisor at this community. It's frustrating because I believe that my brother, even tho I know he loves my dad, is not capable or that willing to help with the real care my dad needs. It's has been pretty much my responsibility for the last year to make sure things and I mean everything! gets taken care of. Today I did contact someone that knows him and did work for him before however, she is only available three days a week and only for 4-5 hours a day :/ I just figured its better than nothing for now.
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Real proof would entail getting him directly to the ER and tested for drugs. They would also check for stroke.
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Being as your Dad is Diabetic, is the staff monitoring his blood sugars? Have his BS levels been consistent and in the normal levels? Why ever didn't the caregivers contact the family if he wasn't acting normal, or sleeping excessively? Aren't they required to notify family if something is amiss in his routine? Could it be that your Dad was simply unhappy with his living situation, and fibbing to get attention? Is your Dad prescribed any medication that is sedating, and could these medications have been accidentally mixed up, and /or, not given at the correct time? The Diabetes is IMO, the likely suspect. Low BS levels, can really knock a pers6out, and cause the groggy symptoms you are describing. But being that he was so unhappy there, and that you already have him back in his home, he is going to need extra extra supervision to monitor his behaviors going forward. Is there going to be someone available to him 24/7, as at 85, with cognitive issues, diabetes, and the fact that he takes a lot of medicine, puts him at serious risk, for being alone, even though he is happier being there. I think one months rent, is probably the least of your worries at this point! Is he able to manage taking his medicine and monitoring his BS on his own, or will there be someone with him daily, looking after him? You are in a tough spot, and I do understand him wanting to be home, and you making him happy, but his safety must come first. I wish you good luck with your Dad, its so hard to please them, and keep them safe from themselves sometimes! I know, I have my 86 year old FIL living with us, and he can't be left for more than a couple of hours anymore, and he displays many of the same issues as your Dad.
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I would follow up to find out as much about what happened as possible. Since your dad has been diagnosed with MCD, I would be diligent in observing how he could be progressing.

Often, the story from the patient may not be accurate. They don't mean to tell false stories, but they say what they believe, and it may be wrong. My cousin thought that her doctor slept on a couch the lobby of her Memory Care facility. She also reported residents who had no legs walked. So, it's a good idea to investigate and confirm. Your dad could eventually say something about you that is not true. I'd be prepared for that.

In your profile, you say the Senior Advisor recommended the home for your dad. If there was reason for that, then wouldn't he still be in need of that care? I'd be wary of just assuming that checking on him while he lives alone is adequate.

Of course, if your dad was treated improperly, it should be addressed. There should be a log completed by the Med Tech as to what medication your father was given.
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Sorry this suggestion is a bit late since you've already given notice, but you could send an amended notice.

Be sure to follow the termination conditions, such as giving notice by certified mail, hand delivered, or whatever is specified. If the terms and conditions aren't followed ver batim, the facility might claim it didn't have proper notice in compliance with the contract and attempt to continue charging you.

If you decide to send an amended notice, and if you're required to specify a reason, you might consider something more general like "inadequate care", which is more broad and could include more than the suspected administration of a sedative.

The staff member who tried to prevent your brother from access to your father's things could fall in a category of "inadequately trained staff", or "belligerent staff", but you want to be careful about making those accusations because it's a "he said, he said" situation.

However, if he threatened your brother, that raises the issue from uncooperative to confrontational. But the issue is proof, unless your brother recorded the incident.

The more general reasons for leaving also give you latitude if you do discover after the next doctor's appointment that something was amiss when your father's behavior changed.

In addition, because it's more general, it could be more damaging to the facility than administration of a sedative which would be hard to prove unless the residue of it remains in a person's system for sometime after administration.

Whatever they're threatening, they certainly don't want bad publicity, so you can also hold that consideration in abeyance if they create further problems.
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Thank you all for your comments. I can only compare how he was before he went to the home. He did sleep during the day and he did have issues sometimes with the caregivers that came into his home to help him but in comparison he seemed to have more issues with the new caregivers at the home not being respectful and being bullies. Also, I have never experience him slurring or being so groggy right after he has woken up.
I don't doubt that he has other issues that could be contributing this I live in a different city than my dad and am only able to visit once a week. I suppose I am going with my gut feeling and prior experience and also my brothers concerns about his welfare.
He is now back at his mobile home and my brother has said he will help my dad everyday but I believe he is planning on doing this until he can find an alternative.
My dad is really happy to be back there and my brother said he was crying tears of relief and happiness. It just breaks your heart because you just want what's best for your parent.
I am taking him to his doctor on Thursday so I will talk with them about the situation.
I was just looking for direction since this is the first time I have had to experience one of my parents decline and trying to find a place that will help him. I also feel like maybe I put too much trust in these new caregivers because they make you feel like they know how to handle and care for his type of personality.
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Well based on the additional information, it's possible your dad was given a sedative, but it's also very possible your dad's slurred speech and sleeping was caused by his general decline and/or the medications he's on. It could be from his sugar being out of whack.

If I wake my mom from a sound sleep (during the day), she sounds drunk, with slurred speech. I can tell she's been sleeping. She's had periods of sleeping a lot, unrelated to being given a sedative. My mom also has no short-term memory, so she'll say she hasn't been told something when I know she's been told multiple times, because I'm the one who's told her. So what seniors report and what reality is can be two very different things. Not intentionally on their part, but because their brains aren't working right.

If your dad has mild cognitive decline, you need to observe him very closely, because those symptoms can come and go from day to day or even hour to hour. So did the home give him a sedative? Possibly. But I think there's a strong possibility that your dad simply had a bad day and that's what happened. It sounds like it's time to really read about the meds he's on (side effects) and get a good handle on what his mild cognitive impairment looks like from day-to-day.
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My mother, when her diagnosis was mci, used to claim all sorts of bizarre things about her caregivers. Any time she had loose stools, it was because " they gave me something".

You should get him to his doctor and report his symptoms; slurring, reporting that he slept for two days. You might want to check with the board and care home about what they objectively observed about your dad5symptoms while he was there. Do they alert families if patients are behaving oddly?

If yyour dad is going to be cared for in a facility, family has to develop a trusting relationship with the caregivers, and the caregivers need to know when to call and report a problem. I don't know if it's worthwhile to try to backtrack and see if this can actually be a good setting for dad. Where is he being cared for now? Is that working?
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Yes Eyerishlass, I do have the contract and it says that a 30 written notification is require. I sent the 30 day notification to the owner today, my brother moved my dad yesterday.
What do you mean by real proof? Like a doctors verification? I don't think I have any real proof but then how to you prove that a sedative was given other than my dad's slurring of words on the phone and than an hour later seem fine and my dad claiming he believed he was sedated?
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Oh thank you Blannie, I didn't realize that the profile was even there since I just signed up today.
My father was diagnose with mild cognitive problems but compared to the other residents he is pretty independent He does take quite a few pills and has diabetes, is hard of hearing and has vision problems. My father had been complaining about the caregivers but I thought he was just having problems adjusting having someone help him. He, however, did not feel that they were helping him. He felt that they were bossing him around and not being respectful of his space. I did talk to the caregiver about my dads concerns but the caregiver would say that he is being respectful and that it is my dad who does not want to cooperate.
I should also say that it wasn't my decision to removed my dad from the home, it was my dad and my brothers decision to move my dad out.
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Track that contract down and see what it says about leaving without 30 days notice. While you may feel justified in not paying rent you don't want to get your dad into legal trouble either.

If you have proof.....real proof....of wrongdoing contact a lawyer before you decide to just not pay the rent.
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Have you had your dad checked out medically after leaving the home? I'd be concerned that he has something medically going on, like a stroke. You don't have your profile filled in, so we don't know what your dad's medical issues are. If he has dementia or something like Parkinson's, that could explain some of his behavior. Did someone talk to the management of the home about your suspicions before removing dad? Is dad mentally coherent?

I don't know about the contract aspect of what happened, but we need more information to give you good answers.
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