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Friday, March 27, 2015

Begone, Old Bed!

One of the first things I did, when we got the settlement, was order two things that Bob desperately wanted for a long time (and Medicare would not pay for) but now we could buy:  a power wheelchair and a new bed. That was back in August.

Finally, we got the wheelchair in January.

And Wednesday, the new bed arrived.  Can you believe it has taken this long?? Heck, meantime, after ordering those two things and waiting of their delivery, I bought a wheelchair van, and bought and sold a house... jeepers!

You might remember Bob's old bed, which was the rather creepy, "standard Medicare bed". It was semi-electric, meaning that only the head and foot could be lowered or raised electrically. Otherwise, you had to get on your hands and knees to use a hand crank, sort of like the crank of a Model T Ford, to raise and lower the bed. I tell you, that is a pain in the you-know-what for any caregiver...

And, on a side note, it's been really sad to see the inferior quality of the types of medical equipment that Medicare "allows" not just with beds but pretty much everything ... and jeepers, you'd think the government (Medicare) would figure out that if they spent a little more money on actual decent equipment for home use, that it would enable more people to stay in the home -- as caregivers would have adequate equipment and not get so goll-darn worn out  -- not to mention (for example) a good bed will prevent pressure sores, and a decent wheelchair will give independence and etc. etc. AND don't they realize how much we (at home unpaid caregivers) actually SAVE them money as opposed to nursing home costs???? grrr
Bob in the old bed, shoulders "off the top" -- pillows held up by the slide board...

Anyway, Bob was also truly uncomfortable. I remember when he first got home from the hospital and kept telling me that his bed was "dippings" meaning sinking in the middle. I remember him begging me to "FIX IT!" and how he would actually point his finger at me so accusingly and yell "FIX IT!" and how very helpless and frustrated and geezus sometimes in tears I was when I couldn't "fix it" for him.... (the service tech I called and who came to look at it and told me to put plywood over the springs! Which I did, but that still didn't "fix it".) And I had to tell Bob to "deal with it" because we couldn't afford a better hospital bed.... And he did, all these years. And the first thing he asked for, when we got the settlement was "a bed"...

Also, with the old bed, I had to jam the slide board between the mattress and springs to hold up his pillows because the plastic headboard wasn't tall enough. And he was always wanting to be "boosted" over the top because the bed did not accommodate his 6'3" frame.

So, it only took 4 years and 3 months, but I finally was able to "fix it"!!!! (Lord almighty, what a difference having some money makes...)

And it gives me great pleasure to document the demise of the old (much hated) bed (off to be donated to the local hospice organization) and the delivery of his new, fully electric bed with not just two different positions, but a total of seven positions (with variations of each of those). And it is "caregiver friendly" in that it can be raised or lowered to my level with the touch of a button. It also features a trendelenburg position and reverse trendelenburg, for adjusting his position in bed. And the bed is "extra tall" (80 inches long) to accommodate his frame.

Goodbye Old Bed! As Bob looks on.

Oh gosh, look at Boomer's ears! ha!

This may look (and feel) like an arcane torture device, but it is,
in fact, the creepy "standard Medicare-approved hospital bed for in-home use" (no exceptions made -- I asked)....

Hello New Bed! No "dippings" with this thing!

It has 3 joints for positioning (instead of 2) and is topped with a super thick foam mattress.

Headboard and footboard of real wood! And an attendant control on the footboard. Wow.

And one Happy Bob!

And on a side note, remember how crowded we were in the old house ??? With Bob nearly blocking the front door and no  room to manuever and nowhere to sit for company???

Bob's new "bedroom" has room for all the things he loves, plus medical equipment and cabinets for supplies and plenty of room to maneuver for transfers, etc. ...
AND seating area for guests (our old living set is out of storage and back in use again!)


Anonymous said...

Great news for both you and Bob. Not only with a comfortable bed for Bob, but also one designed for ease of use for you. Those larger rooms with wood floors a great benefit too. Take care.

Hugs & prayers, Dan

Anonymous said...

Wonderful news...for you both! I wish I could say I'm surprised at how long it took for the new bed and w/c to arrive. Or at the "quality" of the bed Medicare covered... Sadly it's not surprising. I've said for a while now, "With managed care it's a wonder any of us get care.".
Am I jaded? Probably so...

J.L. Murphey said...

Great news! BTW, I remember when all hospital beds were hand cranked. It took a while to get the electrical controls to work right.

I love your new floors!


Jenn said...

Bob looks much more comfy! And the old bed, well, don't they just look like the roll outs motels offer? Diggin' your new space and added comfort. Thank goodness.