Do I need to be concerned???????

mikeandbarbOctober 8, 2008

Yesterday I had a meeting at the AL where my dad is. The nurse told me that dad needed his water pills refilled. So I went to the drug store to get his medications transferred to the walgreens close to the home. I called the nurse letting her know it was done and she said she'd call in the prescription but needed the phone number to walgreens and said that they have a book with the number but she wasn't close to it and asked for the phone number, Well I didn't have the number but told her I'd go back in and get the number for her if she'd like. She said please do. So I got the number for her and called her back giving her the number. While I was at it I filled dads other medication. I had a meeting to go to so I figured I'd just pick up all the medication after the meeting and then drop them off at the AL after the meeting. When I picked up the medicine they did not have dads water pills and said they had not even been called in. This is very upsetting for me.

How should I handle this?

TIA, Barbara

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There is a saying "Don't sweat the small stuff and it is ALL small stuff". You are putting pressure on yourself by getting so upset over minor details. All you had to do was call the home, even could have called on your CELL while at the drug store, tell them to get the script called in ASAP and be done with it. You need to settle down sweetie, you are now the parent of your dad and need to make decisions and think things through. When you work yourself up you can't think clearly and therefore are of no use to your dear father. Now take a deep breath and, to quote Larry the Cable Guy, "get er done!"

    Bookmark   October 8, 2008 at 11:17AM
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Was this a new prescription? If so she has to be the Dr signature/permission on the form. If not, your old pharmacy should have it on file also with the # of refills avaiable. Maybe the refill ran out and there again she must check with the DR. Double check with the DR to make sure he/she has the name and phone # of the new pharmacey. Yes it is frustrating, but smile, breathe deep and you will survive.We are here for you.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2008 at 3:21PM
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Not to make light of how you're feeling but the other posts are right on target. Trust me, if you let this get to you, you'll never get through what is to come. I don't mean to be discouraging, it's just a fact. I got a call yesterday morning that they had called 911 because my mom fell out of her wheelchair for the 2nd time in as many months. Panic set in and I had to get myself under control before I could do anything. I was of no use to her or myself by falling apart. If you are a religious person, pray for strength. If you have friends who will listen when you are stressed, take advantage. But, don't sweat the small stuff.

Take care

    Bookmark   October 8, 2008 at 5:42PM
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I have another take on this issue. I'd be concerned. My mom has been in two different assisted living/memory care facilities. And both places gave me the option of using a pharmacy they work with. I filled out the paperwork to get the account activated and from then on, the AL ordered all my mom's meds as needed. The bills were sent to me. I didn't have to use a local pharmacy unless I wanted to. I chose to use the facility contracted pharmacy because I didn't want delivery of medications to be tied to my erratic schedule.

I'm a bit confused as to how the prescriptions services work at your dad's place. They call you to tell you a prescription needs refilling, then you place the order, pick up the medication, & deliver it to the facility? Or can they call the local pharmacy themselves to place the order? But are you still the one responsible for picking up the order & delivering it to the facility?

That's an awful lot of extra work on your behalf. After all, you're paying for medical supervision. Your other posts about getting calls all the time are troubling too. Most AL/memory care facilities know what to expect during the first few months of a resident's arrival. They're prepared for the complaining, crying, etc. -- the difficult transition. They will document unusual behavior & incidents, but they certainly don't call family members over everything, especially things that are to be expected.

Your dad needs oversight and can't be on his own. But perhaps another facility would be a better match for his needs and yours. Between the lack of any kind of transportation service, the pharmacy needs, & the constant phone calls, you're not getting a whole lot of support.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2008 at 6:13PM
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Shambo, The AL home did offer the me the pharmacy they work with or an outside pharmacy but I was told you have to watch them very close or you'll pay more for the medication if you use their pharmacy.
They call in the medication and then they call me to pick it up. It's not to far out of my way but if something came up who else can pick it up is what I need to think of too. Some medication like his pain medicine you have to sign for or they check to see if your allowed to pick up.
The problem with this one medication is that it is NEW and it was prescribed by the doctor from the rehab not dad's heart doctor.
I did not think it would be so hard getting dad's medication and it shouldn't be this hard.
They told me that they call to let you know if anything is going on but from what it looks like to me is a bunch of people that do not know what their doing or how to handle the situation. Dad has been in there for 13 days and not one day has gone by that I haven't gotten a call from them. First it was telling me he's crying and wants to talk to you. Sure he seemed like he had his wits together but they should know that with dementia they can seem ok for a while and then the bottom falls out and they can't do anything.
Now I found one place to look into that is a home/rehab place long term care, works with dementia and no tours are set up you just go when you want to check it out. One of the ladies at the dementia meetings I go to has her mother there. They maybe set up for what dad needs more than the place he's at.
Now the question is how do I get out of the contract? It is month to month but you have to give one month in advance notice. I could A pay them for the extra month or fight them over not caring for my dad proper?
I have so much on my plate that I can't see the sky for all the work that needs to be done. My house hasn't had a good cleaning in over a month and I'm trying to gear myself up to dig in right after this post. Oh I've done some laundry and sweeping but not a good cleaning and I can't stand a dirty house.
I hope I've made since cause I'm tired and know I mess up sometimes LOL.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2008 at 6:41PM
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Barbara, you make perfect sense. I know how difficult all this is. Regarding the facility contracted pharmacy, they only provide what they have a doctor's order for. And they only order it when the facility notifies them. You can easily check what's being given your father by looking over the bill carefully (and you should be able to get a personal copy/print out of your dad's regular medication schedule). It's a bit of a hassle, but a lot easier than running around trying to get all the meds yourself.

I caught a couple of errors mainly when the doctor had discontinued a medication but the pharmacy was still sending it to the facility. The facility was giving my mom the right pills; it just took a while for the discontinued medication to be taken off the standing order.

I turned in my mom's Medicare RX paperwork to both the facility & its contracted pharmacy, so my mom was getting the same prices she would have gotten if I was doing all the leg work.

I can only imagine how exhausting this experience must be for you. The constant calling surely preys on your mind. Is there some sort of county council on aging you could call to get some advice and help with placement? It must be so hard trying to do all this by yourself. What about the people who run the dementia caregiver support meetings? Could they be of any assistance to you?

    Bookmark   October 9, 2008 at 1:56AM
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What a day it's been. First off I called to check on dad's medicine and was getting nowhere. I called the pharmacy to check on dads medicine and told them I wasn't sure if the doctor will fill it because he is not under his care. So I called his heart doctor and got him to fill the medicine dad needed.
But yesterday I have checked with the pharmacy to see if it had been filled and they kept telling me no.
Well, when I went to pick up the medicine they had two prescriptions for dad and found that both doctors had filled the same one. Talk about feeling like I was in twilight zone I sure felt like I was there.
I went to the rehab/ nursing home to check it out and it seems like a good one. Then I went to visit dad to see how he is doing and I sat with him letting him talk, he was full of complaints and this is what he's complaining about, the other guy in his room has visitors all night long, two young girls in their 20's fighting in his room and they are cutting back on their food not giving them as much as when he first got there.
I'm thinking that he maybe hallucinating. I told them at the home what dad told me and they said that a bladder infection and cause hallucination.
I don't know if dad will be happier at the other home, I'm thinking he won't. He's not going to be happy anywhere but home.
What I hope to get out of this is that I well not get calls of them telling me my dad is crying for me. I know he is crying but I don't need a call to remind me. He will not have to move once his money runs out in three to four years. He'll have someone to take him to his doctor appointments. He'll have a doctor at the home for minor complaints and illnesses. He likes having them check him daily.
He still thinks that he's working on getting better so he can go home. When do I tell him he can't go home or do I just keep telling him he's not ready yet. At the rate he's going down hill I don't know how much longer he'll even remember what I tell him. Today he had a very hard time remembering what he was talking about. Could hold a conversation well.
I hope y'all had a great day and doing well. Me I'm going to go plant a couple of thing's and then relax. I'm thinking of asking DH if we can get away Saturday for the day. We enjoy going up to OK to the casino for a few hours. If not there then do something to relax. Oh dear grandson's BD is Sunday so I'll be going to the party he's turning the BIG 10 whoooo woooooooo LOL. He's very sweet and such a thoughtful little guy. I love having him over.


    Bookmark   October 9, 2008 at 7:10PM
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Barbara, I think you've expressed your priorities very well in your latest post: No daily calls over things the staff should be able to handle; transportation to doctor appointments if needed; on-call doctor for special situations. That is definitively not too much to ask of any care facility. And as your dad's health and/or mental condition deteriorates, those services will be better for him and save you a lot of wear & tear too.

I just got done signing the papers for my mom's transition to the memory care wing next week. I'm continuing the pharmacy service and have opted for the facility to provide her incontinence supplies (Depends, special wipes, etc.). I live about 35 minutes from her facility and don't want her supplies of medicine or diapers to be dependent on my ability to get to her in a timely manner. Between the weather, my husband's health, and my own health issues, I'm not always able to drop everything and rush over to her place.

Hope you eventually get the medications all straightened out. I don't blame you for feeling like you're in the Twilight Zone. And, yes, UTI's in the elderly can result in the most bizarre side effects, including hallucinations.

Have a wonderful weekend.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2008 at 7:29PM
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Shambo, I am sorry about your husband that is one of my fears. Loosing my husband or him getting sick and needing me and here I am caring for dad. It would be so hard. I don't dwell on it but know it can happen.
This other place will take care of dads medicines so I won't have to worry myself over it. Your right about having them get the meds even though the home isn't that far it could be a problem come winter time. When we get ice it can take up to 3 to 4 days before we can drive on the street. Texas does not sand or salt the streets just the bridges.
I will be much more relaxed knowing I don't have to worry if dads got power in a storm. Not to mention the area where his home is isn't a good area, it is a high crime area with gangs. Our old neighborhood went down like a war zone :(
it was beautiful when I was growing up, all the homes taken care of all the yards had gardens. My grandparents had roses in the front and crepe myrtles on the side. Out back grandpa grew peppers for him and tomatoes for granny.

I want to do a family album on my dads side, I found some pictures of my great grandmother a few weeks ago and before now I never seen what she looked like. I've got one on my moms side done.
This will be a good thing for a winter project.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2008 at 9:34PM
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The care home my husband was in assigned a care home doctor for him and took care of the prescriptions. As a matter of fact they took care of everything. All supplies were included in the bill. When he died I even got refunds on the unused meds.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2008 at 3:04PM
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