Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Wednesday Update For Ben

Ben was awake and watching television when we walked into his room this morning. They had started him on his breathing trial at 8:00 AM. His vitals was good, no fever and alert at that time. His nurse Neelima who has been with him for 3 days in a row which is very odd said that she did some exercises with him this morning as it appears the physical therapists are not coming now. Marla and I did some exercises with him again a little later after I had rubbed lotion on his feet and hands. Ben was making silly faces during the morning. He could not make any verbal noises today like he did a couple of times yesterday. We were watching Rachael Ray and she had some burgers on her show. I asked Ben if he was hungry and he nodded yes, so that is a good sign. He has not had solid food for over 6 weeks. Ben's long time buddy Ed Byrne came by to see him today. Problem was, when I spoke with Ed on the phone around 10:00 AM telling him Ben was awake enough for him to come, Ed didn't get there for over an hour later and by that time, Ben was started to fall asleep from being on the breathing trial. I think Ben realized he was there because he looked at him a few times and could hear his voice, but by the time we came back from lunch around 12:30, Ben was totally asleep. They only had him on the breathing trial for 4 hours. The respiratory therapist today said she doesn't like leaving him on it so long that he gets totally drained which is what happens sometimes if they go over 5 or 6 hours. Each therapist has their own ideas on how long he should be on it. I spoke with the floor doctor, Dr. Shin, just before we left to come home. He said that he is about ready to suggest Ben go to the Sub-Acute Trach Care Unit because there is not much more the hospital can do for him. He needs specialized care to wean him off of the ventilator, get the trach out and do physical/occupational/speech therapy which is what these units are all about. Only thing is I worry about the financial part of this care because Kaiser ONLY pays for 60 days of it. If Ben has to be there longer than 60 day, I have to start paying 100% of the bill and they are NOT cheap. I've been told to get government help I would have to take his name off of everything…our bank accounts, investments accounts, our home (which we do not own the land that our home sits on, we have a land lease), our vehicles, etc. I do NOT like that idea, but would do it if it got down to where it was absolutely necessary, but there are still no guarantees even if I do that that he would qualify for that government help. We need prayers that if he goes to one of these units that he will recover in the 2 months that Kaiser covers or in just 1 or 2 months past that that I might be able to afford.


  1. Oh --so many decisions... I'm sorry Kay for all that you are going through. Hopefully Ben will get better ---but as you say, you have no guarantee. I'm still praying hard for his recovery. AND I'll also pray for you to make the best decisions.
    Hugs and Prayers,

  2. Lots of problems to figure out but I think you can cope and handle each thing as is comes up. My prayers, Paula


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