I had a positive post planned for this week, but it is 10:47 pm, and I am waiting to hear from my lung cancer patient, who is currently in the hospital on the Hospice floor.
So I am sharing another example of How The Health Care System is Built for The Healthcare System – NOT For the People Who Use It.
She has been in the hospital since May 22 and was to be discharged to home as a Hospice Patient today.
She has been waiting all day to go home all day. The equipment is at the house, and her family has prepared their home for her – all are anxious as it is a big step for each of them. I have been in contact with the patient, the family, the hospice unit, and the hospice team all day.
At 9:30 pm, I had not heard from her or her family, so I texted them to see if she was home. I thought they forgot to let me know she was at home and wanted to check as I was getting ready for bed.
The patient and her aunt both replied that she had not been picked up by the ambulance…she was still in the hospital.
I called the Hospice floor at the hospital to ask if they have an estimate on the time. Her nurse said she talked to the ambulance company, and they said 20 minutes – that was at 9:15 pm. I asked to speak to the nursing supervisor because I thought sending the patient home was too late. She is very weak and nervous as it is, and it is close to 11 pm.
The supervisor told me that this is not unusual for patients to be discharged this late – and even if she stayed overnight, the same scenario could occur tomorrow. The ambulance services are busy, and this is not unusual. She said it is the effect of COVID, and we have to put up with it. There is nothing to do. So we all wait.
I called the Hospice Unit at 11:30 pm and was told the patient had left a few minutes ago.
I am so disappointed in this system – I am at a loss and embarrassed at we treat people today.