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Response to True Blue American (Reply #56)

Mon Mar 23, 2020, 12:42 PM

62. Part of my last job in the hospital was to notarize health care documents.

I made sure all concerned understood what they meant.

I would look both the patient and their assigned person in the eye and said "Accepting this responsibility means that you are speaking for the patient when they no longer can speak for themselves. You are not deciding what to do, you are carrying out their decisions."

I cannot count the times I looked people in the face and said "You are supposed to do what mama or daddy said, not what you want".

A surgeon once asked me if I would withhold treatment from a loved one...I responded that I had at their direction and that I slept just fine. My mama said do not put a tube to feed me if I cannot swallow. Do not put me on a machine if I cannot breathe. She had Parkinson's Disease that was no longer responding to medication shipped from the company (the newest thing). She had had multiple small strokes. When she developed lung cancer (never smoked, but lived with my father who did...he died at 50.. and taught in public schools where teacher's lounges were smoke pits), we did not treat it, we kept her home. Her death certificate listed her cause of death as lung cancer due to second hand smoke. She has been gone 29 years this April. I miss her, but I know I did what she wanted.

When she was diagnosed with cancer the doctor started listed things that could be done for treatment. I responded that he was not her Health Care POA, I was and she was not going to be treated so she could suffer longer from Parkinson's. She could not speak and could barely swallow by then.

I know I went on but it seemed necessary to share.

TNNurse...actually, Alice Beth

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TNNurse Mar 2020 OP
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True Blue American Mar 2020 #56
LineLineLineLineReply Part of my last job in the hospital was to notarize health care documents.
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