After being away in a critical care unit of a nursing home facility for more than 15 months, my Father was scheduled to return home on October 23, 2008, but on his 92nd birthday which fell on the prior week, he unfortunately had a set back. He suffered a heart attack, developed pneumonia, and has been placed back on life support, after successfully being off life support for nearly 14 months. At this time, my father remains in the critical care unit of the nursing home facility with absolutely no insurance. My Dad exhausted his Medicare benefit in October 24, 2007, and Blue Cross Blue Shield stopped paying their 80% on October 23, 2008. I asked BCBS for an extension on my father's coverage, but they explained that my father's plan did not allow them to do so. Therefore we are in quite a financial crisis. My main concern has always been my father's health, but it's now at the expense of the facility placing a lien on my father's home. Since there is no universal healthcare in this country, and it's very unlikely that my Dad will receive a medical expense bailout, I decided to create an on line campaign called:
Carepaign for Change
Carepaignfor Change supports the "change" in healthcare reform that President Barack Obama spoke about on the campaign trial. However, in this case, I'm actually speaking about change as in currency. I am asking individuals, organizations and businesses alike to donate change to the John H. Taylor Fund. For example, the change after you make a purchase, the change in your pockets at the end of the day, the spare change on your dresser, the change in the car ashtray, or simply a roll of pennies or quarters. Make your contribution count as many times as you like, each day, each week, or each month. You can create a donation jar at work where employees a can contribute.
Your donation is the change that's needed to help my Dad pay his medical expenses, and to help save his American dream. This is "change" we can believe in.
We need as many people as possible to help us get the word out. Please feel free to forward this information to your family members, friends, co-workers, and business colleagues. We realize that there are many others who are in this same situation; therefore, we would like to continue to use this fund to assist others who are in need.
While I campaign for financial change, I will also campaign for a change in consciousness. Elder abuse is the most under reported crime in the country, and something must be done about it. There must be a change in the way we allow our elderly citizens to be treated.
A) Change in the attitude of the owners of the facilities. Advice: This is not just about making money, but about patient care. First and foremost, your heart needs to be in the right place. If you truly love caring for others, then invest time in training employees and make sure that the people who work in your facility understand that the patient is the number one priority, then your reputation for care will speak for itself and the money will follow.
B) Change in the screening and hiring practices used by nursing homes, assisted living and even individuals who hire help to work in their homes. Advice: Let this not be a numbers game, and only a concern about making a physical quota. Also, let us not be rushed in our decision making process, and take time to interview and evaluate the potential hires. Let us be cautious about who we allow to care for our vulnerable adults in and out of the home.
C) Change in the attitudes of the administrators, physicians, physician assistants, management and staff which include: nurses, nurses assistants, physicians, physician assistants, respiratory therapist, physical therapist, occupational therapist, social workers, etc.
Advice: This shouldn't be a business as usual attitude. Patients depend on you for their care, and their lives are literally in your hands. I suggest you review the Mission Statement of the facility. When caring the patient, eat them with dignity and respect. If you find yourself unable to comply with the demands of your position, then it would be in your best interest and in the best interest of the patient for you to choose another career path. Remember, these individuals pay your salary.
D) Change in being fearful of losing your job, or ostracized by your managers and co-workers if you report abuse. Advice: There needs to be zero tolerance for anyone who threatens, neglects, and/or physically, sexually, emotionally, or verbally abuses a patient. All owners, and management staff should welcome any and all reports of abuse. If you don't welcome this information, then you should not be working in the business of caring for others.
My Dad and I thank you for your prayers and support.
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