Medical staff rude to my brother;complicated;advice please - page 10

by burberrylover

9,112 Views | 95 Comments

This past week was a difficult one for my brother. After caring for a lady with cerebral palsy for 14 years(She lived in), she died. It started on the 21st when he brought her into the ER due to stomach pain. After doing a scan,... Read More


  1. 4
    Quote from burberrylover
    Again, is yelling at a patient's family member appropriate? Is thrusting a piece of paper with a funeral parlor's name on it ok?
    I don't base my opinions on heresay. When the person it actually happened to comes along to discuss it, I'll give my opinion.

    I've been the family member receiving news I didn't want to hear and I've been the nurse standing with the exact same doctor hearing her say the exact same words to a different family. What I 'heard' each time was completely different.


    This situation is exactly why I believe that if a person is deemed to be in the final stages of a terminal diagnosis that the wishes they expressed in a Living Will should over ride a PoA.
    Last edit by kids on Nov 30, '09
    VickyRN, Virgo_RN, wooh, and 1 other like this.
  2. 4
    I have been watching this thread for 2 days and keep reminding myself that nurses fight for what is best for the patient. In general doctors fight death. Families fight to keep their loved ones, and the patient is the one who is actually in the fight to live or die. There are cultures that believe that every effort must be made to maintain life as long as possible. We nurses tend to see this as prolonging the death.

    Each one of these facets cannot be without stressful interaction with each other.

    We, as nurses, know how hard we worked to get our education and acquire the knowledge that has been shared for many, many pages. The OP is acquiring this knowledge and my guess is that the brother had little of it. His knowledge base was most likely focused on CP. During these stressful times is not the best time to be getting medical education at the oncology level. In general what families know about disease and death is what they have picked up in bad TV shows, historical talks from the family historian about how Aunt Gertie died, and conversations with friends and neighbors.

    I firmly believe each facet in the care of this poor woman was doing their best with the knowledge they had at the time. Much of what has been presented I can see clearly in my mind. The perceptions based on knowledge, attitudes, and skills from all sides were very different. How could they not be?

    Can we use what we learned here and exchanged here to educate more people before they are faced with this kind of situation? Perhaps the brother should not have been given the responsibility for the HC POA. I know in my family I have been asked to do this job and take it as a heavy responsibility because I know what it means. Did he?

    Educate, educate, educate before the crisis.
    My prayers for all the family, the care givers, and all who are faced with these situations - ever.
    sicushells, shoegalRN, wooh, and 1 other like this.
  3. 0
    Can we use what we learned here and exchanged here to educate more people before they are faced with this kind of situation? Perhaps the brother should not have been given the responsibility for the HC POA. I know in my family I have been asked to do this job and take it as a heavy responsibility because I know what it means. Did he?

    Educate, educate, educate before the crisis.
    My prayers for all the family, the care givers, and all who are faced with these situations - ever.
    Amen to that! Your repetition "educate, educate, educate" is so pertinent. Nothing is quite so awful, and really preventable as to have everyone in the family running around ransacking through files, drawers and old charts to find out if, where and when an Advance Directive might be when the final trip to the hospital is made for the chronically ill or disabled. I try to bring it up whenever I can with the families I work with, in a gentle way- but the OP did bring to fore the reality that families perceive that the healthcare monolith devalues the life of their disabled family member. I really don't believe that is true.
  4. 3
    Quote from leslie :-D
    you know burberry, your situation reminded me of when my son was born 11 wks early...

    my water had broken when i was 25 wks pregnant but signed out ama after a couple of days.
    this necessitated me going to the hospital on a daily basis until i delivered.
    and even after delivery, it was sev'l wks that my son was in nicu, then special care, then transferred to a hospital closer to us...then finally home.
    the whole experience was a nightmare for me.
    i found everyone rude, snippy and even some were blatantly contemptuous...
    specifically the nurses and the doctors on the mfm team (maternal fetal medicine).
    i was incredulous that anyone could be so cold, callous and snarky...
    nevermind several of them.

    well, much later i ordered copies of all the medical records.
    much to my surprise, it was ME (yes, ME) who was considered to be "anxious and demanding"...
    that i was a highly difficult pt to manage, and the chief of the mfm even threatened to transfer me to another hospital.
    (which is true, and i laugh whenever i remember the chief threatening me, and my snippy response.)

    my point?
    that perception is everything and all that time, i had truly believed THEY were the monsters...
    and that my reactions were always in response to being treated so shabbily.
    (i mean, REALLY...did they ALL have to clap as i was finally discharged from their care????)

    so yeah, maybe they were rude, but maybe your brother was a bit stressed as well.

    when you become a nurse, you will be reminded of this thread and experience that "AHA" moment...
    and finally understand what most of us are trying to explain to you.

    truly, wishing you and yours, the very best of everything.
    it's all good, i promise.

    leslie
    And Op, one more thing to add to Leslie's comment, give yourself and brother some breathing room and come back another time to reflect. Everything is so sore right now, an open wound.

    It will be clear someday.
    nursel56, wooh, and leslie :-D like this.
  5. 2
    And Leslie,

    I am a nightmare patient like you too.

    A couple of hospitalizations for me and loved ones and I remember some of my own behavior.

    I cringe now...but I remember being in survival mode then....

    So...I feel for both sides...
    wooh and leslie :-D like this.
  6. 1
    Closing as thread has run its course... thank you to all who presented various reasons for staffs actions and brothers interpretation of events. May you both find peace in the days ahead and a lesson to take with you during your clinical experiences.
    wooh likes this.


Top