Saturday, May 12, 2012

Lady, Lady, Lady

Lady is still up to her old tricks; frequent visits (mostly during the day), speed-dialing the patient services rep to complain about some imaginary slight, or for perhaps calling attention to her obesity, poor eating habits and lack of diabetic control cause-effect.

She had some abdominal surgery a while back, but at Ginormous University Hospital in another state.  Naturally, because she is a poor healer she had some wound dehiscence.  Said hole in her belly has been plugged up on a daily basis by the home care nurse.

The thing about home care is that the patient must, oddly, be at home to receive a service.  Lady's  home care nurse, understanding what a deep personal relationship we have with Lady, gave us a heads up that we might hear from her.  She didn't happen to be home at the time of his visit and she would only be able to stop back at her house late in the afternoon.  It depended on his other scheduled visits.

Of course she called to inquire if she should come right down for us to handle her emergent wet-dry dressing change.  She didn't know about the call from the home care nurse.

Lady: "Yeah, I'm having some issues with my home care nurse.  She's beginning to be a real pain in my ass.  She said that just because I missed her visit by 7 minutes she couldn't come back because she had to go way out to Booneysville and it would take her out of her way.  That is unacceptable, I was out buying groceries so I could have healthy food for my diabetes, and groceries don't buy themselves.  Should I come in and have you change it?"

Me: "No, Lady, your home care nurse is the one you see every day who knows about your wound and how best to do the dressing.  What exactly did she say?  Maybe that she would TRY to come by and that she would call you?"

Lady: "Uh, um.....well, she's really beginning to bother me.  She might be able to come back but she didn't say when"

Me: "It is the weekend, any issues you are having with her will have to be dealt with on Monday.  In the meantime, she is your nurse.  I suggest you wait until you hear from her.  She did say she would try to get back to you, but to be fair, you were not home when you agreed to be there.  That's not her fault, is it?  And if she had to go to Booneysville waiting around for you when she didn't know when you would be there isn't fair to her or her other patients"

Lady: "Well, so you're saying I shouldn't come in?"

Me: "No, I said wait to hear from her.  If she can't reschedule your visit, have her call ME"

Lady: "Oh.  So she can tell you how to do the dressing"

Me : "Yes" (actually because I know she will not be calling me which means you will not come in by that big white taxi with the flashing red lights for a dressing change that doesn't need to be done)

Come Monday, two things happened; Lady fired the home care nurse, and the home care nurse stopped by to thank me.