Nursing home admission policy tasked by widow

Posted 7/12/17

To The Editor:

I am writing this letter about the policy of nursing homes. I was not aware that a nursing home could pick and choose who they will take care of and who they will not.

In March, …

This item is available in full to subscribers

Nursing home admission policy tasked by widow

Posted

To The Editor:

I am writing this letter about the policy of nursing homes. I was not aware that a nursing home could pick and choose who they will take care of and who they will not.

In March, my husband was admitted to the ICU unit at Tennova. He had suffered a heart attack and was in the final stages of dementia, along with other health problems. The hospital doctor told me he could not any longer be taken care of at home, and that he would have to be admitted to a nursing home.

When he was able to be dismissed, the social worker started the process of getting him admitted to a nursing home. That’s when I was hit with disbelief. One by one, all three nursing homes in Cleveland turned him down.

They said it was because he had become combative. This is one of the terrible effects of this disease. He was not a mean person, he was sick.

It was really disturbing that they refused to take care of him. I know it’s a hard job, but surely they knew there would be people like him that would need their care when they chose this profession. To turn him away was heartbreaking.

He was finally admitted to a nursing home in South Pittsburg, [but] too far for me to drive to by myself. I could only go see him when someone was free to take me.

When one of the administrative personnel asked why we were in South Pittsburg when we were from Cleveland, I told him none of the nursing homes would take him because he was combative. He said, “That’s in every nursing home across the country. That’s just part of being a nursing home.”

The nursing home in South Pittsburg was an affiliate of the first nursing home here that turned him down. But the person that was talking to us realized that my husband had not yet been approved for Medicaid. He said he guaranteed if [my husband] had been approved for Medicaid that they would have taken him.

So all I know is, whether it was his illness or insurance ... whatever it was, I feel my husband was a victim of discrimination.

And no one can tell me that none of these nursing homes have any dementia patients, because there was an article in the [Cleveland] Daily Banner a few weeks ago about a local nursing home and their dementia patients.

On June 7, I got a call that my husband was not doing good at all. The family came together and started to the nursing home. Because of construction and an accident on the interstate, it took us twice as long to get there. When we finally got there, he had already slipped into a coma.

Had he been in Cleveland, we could have gotten to him in minutes instead of hours. I lost my husband in the early morning hours.

I hope [that] soon a nursing home, like a hospital, will not be allowed to turn people away who need their care.

So, to the ones that make the decisions, what if this was one of your family members? I’m sure the decision would be different.

— Wanda Patterson

McDonald

Comments

No comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment

X

Print subscribers have FREE access to clevelandbanner.com by registering HERE

Non-subscribers have limited monthly access to local stories, but have options to subscribe to print, web or electronic editions by clicking HERE

We are sorry but you have reached the maximum number of free local stories for this month. If you have a website account here, please click HERE to log in for continued access.

If you are a print subscriber but do not have an account here, click HERE to create a website account to gain unlimited free access.

Non-subscribers may gain access by subscribing to any of our print or electronic subscriptions HERE