My blood pressure is up!

My loved one with dementia lives in an assisted living facility.

They have an outbreak of Covid19. In the past week 5 more residents and more employees have tested positive.

I cannot visit her.

Only for urgent medical needs should we take our loved ones out of the facility.

The vaccine will not start being distributed until next week. Thus they are still vulnerable.

I am using telemedicine with my loved one to manage health issues. The most difficult part was helping her get both her video and audio on at the same time. Her primary care is very thorough and knows how to work with memory impaired patients. We learned that my sister is experiencing dizziness. We looked at the most recent blood pressure reading and it was running low. A more current blood pressure reading is needed.

I cannot visit her. Covid19 is spreading through the facility. The management advises not to take residents out unless for urgent medical needs.

I called the facility’s nursing office. They call it the “wellness office”.

I explained what I needed and was told we don’t take blood pressure readings. I actually forgot that information. They are nurses without stethoscopes and BP cuffs but they do have a wrist type device. I was not offered that option.

I had to softly threaten to take my sister out of the facility that has a Covid outbreak to get a blood pressure check. I explained the need a second time.

She offered to speak to her manager the director of nursing who is not in the office until later today. I asked that she do that and if the answer is no I told her I would be taking my sister out of the facility to have that performed.

I don’t like threats nor do I like threatening.

There were other ways to hold this discussion.

This is a unique situation in a unique time of our lives.

If this was my staff I would have expected my request to be handled differently.

I get it, she has a standard operating procedure and I forgot this was not a service (for $5k plus a month).

Could she not have said, “let me look into this and get right back to you?” I would not have thought anything about that. If she was given permission a reminder during the follow up call can be added.

Do I risk my loved ones health by waiting for a blood pressure reading in house or do I risk her and the community’s health by taking her out of the facility for the check?

I have the luxury of purchasing and delivering a monitor to my sister’s facility. I live 6 miles away. Not everyone with a loved one has that option.

My next task is to purchase a home blood pressure monitor for my sister who was a nurse. She knows how to use it, just does not have access to one.

Second thought, my next task is to take my own blood pressure.

HartFelt wishes that all our loved one’s in assisted living are well with no Covid outbreaks.