Two and a half years ago my doctors found a tumor wrapped around my spinal cord. It left me paralyzed. I only spent two weeks in a rehab hospital before being released to go home and live my new life.
I’m a single 55 ( 52 at the time ) year-old woman. I have no family and my friends were never trained in anyway how to help, or even how to make sure my home was set up for me once I arrived.
I left the hospital and got home but I could not get into my house because I didn’t have a ramp to get in. My friend that brought me home had to find a neighbor to help get me into the house.
Once I was in, it took me five weeks to find someone to come out to build me a ramp. Needless to say, I was stuck inside until the ramp was built. I needed my bathroom properly setup and that took about 4 weeks to do.
I had to add a bit of sidewalk from my front door to my back patio in order for me to use my back patio. That took three months to get done. I had to wheel around the block to use my patio.
It really would have been nice for my friends to have known what I needed and could have worked on it while I was in the hospital. No one bothered to ask me at the hospital what my setup at home was. I live in a Townhome alone. A law like the CARE Act could have helped me.
Would you or someone you know would benefit from CARE Act measures requiring hospitals to help you transition from hospital to home care? If so, we want to hear from you. Send your stories to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The CARE Act, a law in 35 states and three US territories, improves health outcomes, and lowers expensive hospital re admissions by requiring hospitals to:
IDENTIFY – The name of the family caregiver is recorded when a loved one is admitted into a hospital;
INFORM – The family caregiver is notified if the loved one is to be discharged to another facility or back home; and
INSTRUCT – The facility must provide an explanation and live instruction of the medical tasks – such as medication management, injections, wound care, and transfers – that the family caregiver will perform at home.