Recently my mom had hip surgery due to a fractured hip and currently she is staying at a rehabilitation center which is located inside a nursing home … While visiting her I spoke with a 79 year old man who actually lives there due to heart problems and he has no family to look after him , he was explaining to me that he had been a type 2 diabetic for the last 10 years and before he came to live at the nursing home he used to treat his diabetes with oral drugs and he told me that since living in the nursing home they give him shots and the reason for this is shocking Because It’s Easier for the nurse … I asked him if he goes low and said yes at least a couple times a week and all they give him is 4 Oz of milk with sugar in it …so I asked him if he’s aloud to keep glucose tabs in his room so that he doesn’t have to depend on the nurse and he said know because glucose tabs are considered medicine in this facility …my mom also has type 2 and she tAkes medformin …when I first came to visit her she had been there already for one night and two days …I’m being so specific because in all that time they would not give her her the medformin and nobody tested her bloodsugar …so of course I tested it for her and she was 260 and she had even skipped dinner … So I asked the head nurse why her medicine wasn’t given in two days and she said because the dr didn’t order it …so I had to be firm and speak up for my mother because obviously they weren’t taking her seriously …so I said to the head nurse" well I’m not leaving until I see you hand her the medicine and they listened to me cause I wasn’t sweet about it I demanded it … It’s just common sense that diabetes doesn’t wait for a dr s orders …I wonder if they do this to type 1 diabetics cause we all know that a type 1 cannot go two days without insulin …finding this stuff out really scares me personally because I only have one daughter and it makes me think that I should have at least two more children so that when I’m old I have a big family so that I don’t ever end up in a nursing home …but unfortunately I can’t handle another pregnancy cause the first one was complicTion free it’s just that my body became so insulin resistant while pregnant that I required about 250 units a day compared to my normal dose of 40-60 a day and whenever I take extra insulin even now to treat a high the next day I’m always up at least 2 lbs so that explAins why it has taken me 5 years to lose the 90 lbs that I gained while pregnant
I am sooo sorry for this man and for your mother! It is disgusting and I think you need to complain to the authorities that run this home, highlighting the incidents and highlighting the importance of diabetes and its treatment. This is out and out cruelty.
Another suggestion. If glucose tablets are not allowed (and they should be!) then how about getting some small plastic boxes that can be secreted into pockets and fill them with sweets. You could ask both your mother and this other man what sort of sweets they like - I generally carry small, unwrapped sweets, like jelly beans - and put them in their rooms. This is not expensive and would be doing this gentleman in particular, who has no advocates, a huge favour. Or take him some packets of sweets “as a gift” that he could keep in his room. I do not know how mobile he is, but if you were to put them somewhere he could reach them. Surely candy is not disallowed.
I do know what they are going through. It has happened to me several times in hospital. I well remember several times when I was not allowed to do my own insulin regime and was hooked up to a continuous pump of human insulin (to which I am over sensitive and actually allergic!) and an hour or so before lunch I was hypo - and I mean hypo - sweating, slurring … and asked for snacks and sugar and was told to wait for the hour for lunch when food would arrive. A couple of times I was not conscious by the time lunch arrived, or so weak that I could not eat!
I now carry a document stating that I will do my own glucose testing and insulin regime, that I refuse point blank to have human insulins (I am now on pork insulin which for me is much smoother, though I still have hypos from time to time) while I am conscious, and state my food allergies, what times I want my snacks (and I take a lot of sweets in with me to deal with hypos) and make a fuss if they decide to do anything else - because they know better! Dammit, they do not!!!
I hope you get your Mom sorted out and that she recovers well enough to get out of there soonest! And my prayers are going up for this poor old man who has no-one to look out for him!
I think this whole thing only further emphasizes how important it is that you (or your family) are assertive in your care. I understand that you shouldn’t have to be…but unfortunately that’s the way it is
I work in a hospital and it often frightens me how little some medical professionals know about diabetes (almost as much as it frightens me how little some patients know about their diabetes). I’ve heard of rather egregious errors occurring on the floors (luckily not @ my hospital). The worst example was a float nurse giving insulin in mLs instead of units! (many insulin’s are 100units/mL)
I’m also in nursing school and it doesn’t surprise me how little some nurses know b/c the instructors don’t know anything either! The main focus is all about type 2 (or “adult onset” as the instructors call it). This upcoming semester we will be doing the “diabetes unit” and I am very grateful I will be out of town for it; I’m not sure I’d be able to hold my temper.
I have been thinking about this all day and it has really been bothering me. I have often said that diabetes doctors and nurses should be made to have their blood sugars artificially raised almost to the extent of being very ill to feel what it is that we diabetics go through. It would not be so dangerous for them since they will naturally come down anyway if they are not diabetic.
Equally, they should be made to take insulin to experience the feelings of weakness etc that we experience when we go hypo - all under supervision of course - so that they know what it feels like for us and that it is not just a trivial matter and that it can by quite scary, even when you do know what it is!
Also doctors and nurses in whatever field should be trained in listening skills, empathy and learn to ask the right questions in order to get the right answers! Afterall, many lay people are maybe not very articulate when it comes to explaining symptoms and the way they feel!
It seems lots of people both in and outside of the medical profession don’t take type 2 seriously, including many type 2’s themselves. True the consequences of inattention are much greater with type 1 but they are serious none the less. Both can kill, one just a little faster than the other.