My sister (62 years old) has just been told by her doctors that she may be on long term vent therapy or for life. She had brain surgery 17 years ago, and has been mostly immobile for the last two years basically due to her fear of falling and injuring herself. She developed Pneumonia recently, and was placed in ICU where she remains and has had a traichiometry. We are being told that her diaphragm may be partially paralized and she can inhale but not exhale. Attempts have been made to ween her off of the ventilator but she only has the strength to breath on her own for 48 hours or so. I am hoping someone will know if she may have hope of recovering from this with only knowing what I have told here and also if it would be possible for her to return home with vent therapy. As of now, we are being told that she will have to be placed in a vent facility in which the options we were given will be hundreds of miles from her family.
Any help will be appreciated.
A facility for vent patients is not her only option. Medicare or Medicaid should pay for home care. If you go with a good provider like Maxim (http://www.maxhealth.com/services/homecare.asp), you'll be provided with competent Licensed Practical Nurses and a Registered Nurse on call at the office. Both will be familiar with vents and trachs.
Keep in mind, most people are not approved for 24/7 home care on a long-term basis. (Usually, a nurse is provided 24/7 for a short time to enable the patient and family to become comfortable with carrying out the patient's care themselves.) It is just too expensive. However, most of the time she will have a nurse. It all depends on her needs, and the needs of the family.
Home care will require some commitment from your family. Since 24/7 nursing is not likely, someone will need to be with her and be familiar with her care during the times a nurse is not provided.
If funds are not a problem, you could pay for nursing out-of-pocket for the hours insurance will not cover.
As a vent patient with home care nurses, I can be of some help. Not knowing a whole lot about your sister and your family, I would guess that she would be approved for 56 hours of care per week. The family and patient will be able to decide when and how they will use those 56 hours. The family is the one who decides how long shifts will be and on which days a nurse will come.
Hello My motherinlaw is 72 yrs old. She has COPD and live with oxygen for some time now. She crashed and has been in the hospital for a month. They weaned her off the vent once and she seemed to be doing fine but crashed and was put back on. She has pulled it out 3 times and has been put back on. She tells the family she wants to die but we have one family memeber that keeps telling her she has to live for her (the daughter) sake. She now has a trach and seems to be doing a little better. 2 children want to let her make her own decision to live on a vent or die. The other wants to take her home with her on the vent. There is noe money for her and she only has medicare and medicaid. We are so confused what to do and not do. It is so hard knowing the right decision. Any suggestions or pertinent statements would help. Thanks
This is definitely your mother-in-law's decision. As long as she is of reasonably sound mind, the family needs to put aside their own wishes and do what their mother wants them to do.
I wish your mother-in-law all the best and to not have to live a life she does not want.
Hi-My father is on a vent full time and currently is in a Long Term Care Hospital. He is in the process of obtaining Medicaid. Will this help for Nurses for him? I am assuming 56 hours means 8 hours per day, 7 days per week? Any help would be great. We are so unsure of whether or not to bring him home.
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