October 2, 2008
He kept her at home, for 26 days. She has put on 20 pounds, weighing back in at 334lbs. She will not put on her glasses with the one eye being a coke lens. She has resumed her position sitting in the hallway, just outside her room, which consists of two other residents. If she just sat there, that would be nice. But, oh, no, she has to have everyones undivided attention, as she screams out things, such as, "what time is it?", "If you don't give me some maalox, I'll throw up right on the floor!", "No, I won't go into my room so you can check my blood sugar-I don't care who sees my blood!", "What time is it?", "Take me to the dining room-NOW", "I'm wet..." This presents a problem, when trying to sort out medications of minimally 10 for 26 other residents while having another resident constantly reaching for whatever is set on top of the medication cart to divert my attention whilst she grabs the narcotic book with another hand and/or reaching into the drawer before I can completely pull it open!
I fight the urge to slam the drawer shut. I have enough to do without having to stop to do stat first aid, run get an ice pack, phone the doctor for an order for an Xray, phone the Xray company to come Xray her hand, and then to top all that off, still have the medications dispensed within an hour's time! Also, there would be the added burden of completing an incident report, phoning the resident's Responsible Party, and writing the entire account on the Nurses' Notes. As if that were not enough, at any given moment within the next two weeks, an affidavit would have to be hand written for the facilities lawyers-just in case a Law Suit should ensue....
The loud resident had three episodes of foul smelling loose stool which everyone was aware of from the entrance of the unit to beyond the Nurses' Station of the half the length of a football field area. To be more precise, she has a distinct odor of C-Difficile about her. By 9 o'clock, she was fast asleep when her husband phoned to resume his usual phone sex.
This should be no one else's business, but the facility practice is to allow the Physician's cell phone to be used by the 54 residents, rather than incurring a charge to the family to put in a bedside phone. I explained to him that she had just fallen asleep as she was exhausted from having what she had frequently said was a miserable day. He responded that he did not care, there was a Physician's order written that he may phone any time he wishes, and to go wake her up! I reminded him that visiting hours were over at 8PM, there was no Ward Clerk nor CENA available to do that as everyone was tying up loose ends (so to speak) so that everyone could leave on time. As I spoke, I fanned through her physician's orders and found no such order that he claimed was there and informed him of such. I then shared with him that her two room mates were also asleep and it would be unfair for them to have to be, once again awakened by her screaming into the phone to relay her disgust at his day's follies. I assured him that she was contently sleeping, and then bid him a good night and hung up the phone at 9:20 PM.
After making the 10 o'clock Walking Rounds, as I came out of the room, the one legged husband was using a walker as he stomped with his leg prothesis, nearly tripped over an 80 year old who was propelling her wheelchair past the angelically sleeping threesomes' room. He looked into the room. Hearing once again that his wife was asleep, he again stated "I don't care! I'm going to wake her up!!!!" As I pulled the door to, behind me, I said, "Sir, you have seen for yourself that not only is she asleep, but so are her two other room mates, and I will not have ANY one of them disturbed!"
It was at that instance, that the Director of Nurses and Assistant Director opened the unit's closed doors and entered. They had had a meeting with the Staff Nurses at 9...as they approached the irate husband, they reminded him of the papers he had signed the day before which clearly states the conditions under which his wife was re-admitted to the facility and furthermore he was renigging that agreement. As they took him by either elbow to escort him off the Unit, the six foot, three inch one legged man came to a dead stop, was turning around to return until he saw my six foot six, male, co-worker immediately behind, following his foot steps! It was not until 10:30PM before the Guard came up to the floor for the 'low down'. She rested her right hand on her pistol's snapped closed black leather hip worn holster as it was determined that one of the 'smoker residents' had let the husband in, as the guard buzzed to release the otherwise locked back door, facility entrance.
By quarter to eleven, a CENA came to the desk to get the Physician's Cell phone. The wife had awakened and wished to phone her husband. As I dialed the number she recited, I asked that she keep her voice down, so as not to disturb her two room mates. By the time I reached the Nurses' Station, a quarter lengths distance of a football field, the wife's words were clear and distinct, to her husband...Mary in the first bed awoke began to cry, and Barb in the middle bed awoke and began screaming, 'Shut up!', the man next door began yelling, "Help me, Help me", across from the wife's room another patient began yelling, "Nurse, Nurse, Nurse...", another resident adjoined on the other side of the wife's room turned on the call light which sounds like a car horn honking at the Nurses' Station to ask "Why the hell did You let Them come back?"
Here it is, almost noon, the following day and I haven't recouped! This is supposed to be an "off day" to recoup so that I may return to work to do a consecutive four! Dear Lord, give me strength, please....