Finally, finally, finally, this week the home health agency sent a nurse to set Bob up for at home feeding tube replacements. Yes, you read that right. At home!!! Which means no more rushing to the Emergency Ward, or to Outpatient Surgery or even the GI doctor's office. Not only that, he will get a new G-tube inserted every eight weeks beginning July 12! And if he ever has an emergency, i.e. his tube explodes or falls out or gets clogged beyond my ability to unclog it (all of which have happened in the past 2+ years), I can just call up the agency and they will send a nurse right out to help me!!!! Whoo hoo!!!!
Oh, and extra added bonus: IT'S ALL FREE!!!
I tell you, this is how the system should work.
But you can't imagine the hoops I had to jump through to get this set up.
And how much I wish someone had told me of this service before now. Or even told me the fact that (this doctor says) Bob's tube should be changed out every eight weeks to prevent infections and tube breakdowns. Because when I think of the grief Bob's tube has caused us in the past: each time it clogged and refused to unclog or split down the side or the y-port cap broke off or the whole thing just plum exploded and the one time, when it fell completely out. And when I think of all of those stressful ER runs, not to mention the expense: think $75.00 for an emergency transport ride and $250 co-pays for surgery.... geez-us.
Tomorrow, they are delivering a backup feeding tube, so I can have it on hand in case of emergency. I had to laugh when the infusion pharmacy called me to tell me this, because it was the same gal that, three weeks ago, I had asked if it was possible to get a "backup" tube for emergencies and she flat out told me no, it was not possible. And if I wanted one of those, to buy it myself. ha!
But, you wouldn't believe the brick walls I ran into setting this whole thing up. Starting with, first the GI doctor, then the GI doctor's nurse who had the order from the doctor but didn't know who to call or how to set it up. That nurse told me to figure it out and call her back. So countless calls later, talking with a lot of people who didn't have a clue, I finally connected with the right person at the right agency and after that, things rolled.
So it's all set up. You don't know a godsend this is going be. And a big relief. But jeepers, why didn't anyone tell me about this service before? grrr...