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Family administering meds?

ccarruth ccarruth (New) New

Background: My 88 yo dad is inpatient, admitted for pulmonary emboli and subsequent GI bleed on 5 th day of anticoagulant therapy. Doctor scheduled upper and lower GI looking for the source of the bleed. My question is this: who's responsibility is it to administer the bowel prep? My dad is weak and feeble, requires feeding, has trouble holding a cup to drink independently. The nurse brought the prep liquid in and told my brother to have dad to drink it all. Dad has dysphasia and requires thickened liquids. Brother asked for thickener and nurse brought in some packets of thickener, but didn't check on status or progress for the rest of her shift, nor did she assess his safety with the thickened liquids. Dad is now in ICU on a vent with aspiration pneumonia. I think this nurse did not do her job, but I'm old school and maybe things are different on the med-surg floor these days. I would like some objective feedback. Thanks.

Rose_Queen, BSN, MSN, RN

Has 15 years experience. Specializes in OR, education.

This sounds like something that should be addressed through the facility that cared for your family member. Try reaching out to the patient rep.

Thanks. I appreciate your input.

MunoRN, RN

Has 10 years experience. Specializes in Critical Care.

I would say the biggest problem from reading your story was that the patient/family agreed to a lower GI scope on a dysphagic 88 year old with concomitant PE and lower GIB. The GI doc's job is to convey what the standard treatment is for lower GIB, which is prep followed by a scope, but the GI doc also depends on the patient and/or family to determine when that slight risk of benefit doesn't justify the significant risk in such a patient.

Med-Surg workloads have changed drastically in the last 5 to 15 years, a large portion if not the majority of patients currently on med-surg units were step-down or even full ICU patients 10-15 years ago, and they typically have between 5 and 8 patients, so you can't really expect them to directly supervise the consumption of colon prep.

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN, CNS

Has 27 years experience. Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

We can't provide this kind of feedback - please take your concerns to the hospital caring for your Dad. Sorry you are going thru this.

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