Blood is thicker than water

Advocating for my kids is not something I set out to do. Hell, I’d love to have kids where such actions are not necessary, believe me. Yeah, some advocating is always needed, but you know what I mean.

Some people are easy to go up against. They are naturally pukes and putting them in their place is not too painful, just distasteful. But now I have a bit of a problem.

This thing with David is getting to me. I’ve had a tough couple of weeks anyway, and on top of that I keep getting this image of some school aide running down this 75 yard walkway, with my son in his wheelchair, seizing, because the school nurse refused a call for help. I actually awoke with that image the other day.

I have no problem calling the school nurse on this, you know my thoughts on them. And, at his residential facility, the V.P. of Nursing is really an incompetent moron, I know this from past experience.

I started interacting with the doctor who oversees that part of the residence that David lives in. He is a good guy, a good and caring doctor, experienced, quiet, everything you would want. I actually like him. But our interactions, well, now have some issues. Do I call him out on what he says? Yes, if it is in David’s best interest, since as they say, blood is thicker than water.

The email (in the last post) said in part:

My question is, was her decision to not respond and not render any aid according to then established protocol or was it a violation of then established protocol?

Additionally, what is the nurse’s name?

There was no answer. So I sent him another email a couple of days later, cc’ing all necessary. In this one I quoted the state statutes that concern a careless or willful disregard for a patient’s or client’s health or safety. It is interesting that the question as to if the client suffered actual injury is moot, disregard is disregard regardless of damages.

Here is that email, to the same doctor:

I do not seem to be able to get much information about what happened to my son, David, a few days ago with regards to the seizure he had in the classroom.

About all I know is that the school personnel in the classroom called the school nurse and the nurse refused to respond in any manner. I am told that a staff member then found it imperative to “run with David” to the residence.

State law clearly states:

[two direct quotes of state law] “showing a careless or willful disregard … safety or health of a client …”

A licensee may be disciplined by the board for any one of those grounds (among many others).

Paragraph X of the same Section goes on to say that your organization is mandated to report to the board with 30 days any time a licensee willfully violates those provisions.

Is anybody concerned about what happened? Why am I not being told if protocol was followed or violated? Or even the nurse’s name? Is there a concern that state law may have been violated? Was it? Will your facility be following the law as stated in paragraph X?

Well that got his attention. I knew it would, but I was being ignored until this point. Here is his response that came in within 15 minutes. Watch as he starts his own burial … note that the school has students from the residence as well as others that do not live there.

Susan, our VP of Nursing is planning to reply to your previous email, but as she has not yet done so, let me at least preface her remarks. On the day that David had his seizure there was no refusal of care by anyone. There was, however, a problem with the availability of important information. The school students who reside in the residence receive all of their medications from the residence nurses, and when there are medical issues that interrupt their school day they return to residence for evaluation and treatment. David’s seizure helped us realize that in the case of a true emergency that would need to be managed in the school, the school nurse did not have ready access to the medication orders, including orders for emergency medications, for the residential students. This situation has now been corrected and copies of the medication orders for all of the residents’ students are now in the school nurses office.

I will let Susan, who has been collecting information and speaking to the nurses involved, respond to the questions posed in your previous email and in this one.

Cool. He categorically states “there was no refusal of care by anyone,” works for me. So I respond:

Thank you for the response.

I have been told that the school nurse was called and did not respond. Even without any information on David, either about medications or his condition, a nurse would typically respond to offer basic airway management or any other life-support issues that could potentially occur with any person having a seizure. She would be, by far, the closest emergency responder.

So am I to understand that the school nurse was not notified at all?

Uh oh. This parent is not going away so easily … he responds:

What I don’t know for sure- and I don’t want to misinform you-is if staff was able to reach the school nurse in her office. I am confident that Susan will be able to provide you all the facts.

That whoooosh sound you hear is called “backpedaling.”

Then a couple of days of silence. Screw that …

I need to add a concern or two to our interactions in this email trail.

Your first response says (in part) “On the day that David had his seizure there was no refusal of care by anyone” with respect to my concern that the school nurse violated multiple parts of the state statutes. But later you say “What I don’t know for sure- and I don’t want to misinform you-is if staff was able to reach the school nurse in her office.” I have heard from more than one person that the nurse was contacted. Hence a refusal of care, no?

You do say that Susan will respond to my original questions as well as those in this email trail. Past experience contradicts that, and as of today, I have not heard anything. I certainly hope David’s mother and I will hear, in writing, within the thirty day period the statute calls out.

Thanks for your time and concern.

And that’s where we stand. You may wonder why I am following up like this. We have had big problems with the nursing there before, including a life threatening situation caused by nursing. Additionally, all I really want to know is what happened, what the protocol was / is. That is not too much to ask, at least I don’t think so.

Just like in politics, it’s the cover up that kills you.

Sorry, doc. Blood is thicker than water.

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