Medical Manslaughter: Gloria J. Yorke
Imagine doctors that diagnose a patient and follow up on their care with the correct protocols. What would happen if everyone was treated fairly, justly and their requests and desires met by the physicians in charge of their care? Amazing to say the least. When a person is admitted to a facility such as a hospital and their prerequisite information is recorded either in writing or digitally on a computer, their allergies, previous medications and present ones, their past surgeries and medical histories should be readily available to all medical staff. Before administering a procedure or medicine the hospital ID band on their person’s wrist should be scanned. The author shares the history of how Gabriella and Nicholas met and their childhood and her parents. Her ability to run many different hotels as General manager, sales director and other high positions until she met Nick. The story takes a different turn when he is rushed to the hospital and then assessed only to be sent to one what has neurological department and I have to admire Gabriella and her tenacity and her persistence to speak her mind, care for Nick and when he was tied down daring anyone to stop her from unbinding him, yelling for the nurse, getting him moving until the unthinkable happened. He was finally evaluated for rehab and physical therapy when Dr. Hilda German turned the tables inside out and the darkness set in as she decided to administer a sleeping pill for a patient with a serious concussion and brain injury. Questioning her the doctor was dispassionate as the rest of the staff showed no empathy or care either. The next day Nick was not responding, the nurse that came to give him his meds never even realized how deeply asleep he was and claimed she was going to come back later that morning. The start of his downfall but what would Gabriella do to unravel this mystery and bring her love back?
Prescribing a sleeping pill for someone with a head injury and a concussion was not the right protocol and Gabriella’s reaction and the demands she made of the hospital staff did not go unanswered but when Dr. Christina called for Dr. German to come and see Nick, she did not think it necessary to come and the final outcome has yet to be revealed as he did not wake up. Demanding another doctor and who could blame her, Dr. Bobbie Edward arrived and seemed to take matters in hand after hearing her encounters and what happened from the start after his fall and why he wound up in this hospital. Who could blame her for losing faith in the staff and many of them seemed cold hearted, but the night nurse made sure that the doctor gave him the sleeping pill as Gabriella relates to us for her to sit on her fat you know what and not have to get up to care for him during the night. When confronting Dr. German on last time I was impressed with Gabriella’s no-nonsense delivery and I admire her for her persistence and insistence that matters be escalated to higher ups and the result still up in the air and will he ever wake up is the answer?
When your life is held in the hands of a medical professional you must hope that they hold your welfare and health paramount and in this case that was not what happened. The author flashes back to where it all began and how they met and their whirlwind romance and the obstacles they faced when they wanted to marry in the Catholic Church. The story is told by Gabriella and the emotional upheavals both highs and lows are felt by the reader.
When the hospital insisted on discharging him, she stood up to everyone including the administration and got a few days extension to find a reputable nursing home. With the help of a staff member she was able to get him placed in Lavender Gardens but no matter how good or well-staffed they are things go wrong, staff members become lackadaisical and care falls down as we learn when Gabriella creating her own checklist and time frames for Nick’s care allowing the staff to understand her measures would be followed. We also learn more about her father in Jesus and her connection to him when Nick finally they said opened his eyes. But, will he speak, and will he ever be Nick again. Others in the home understood that she played his CD’s all day and night and the understanding among the other patients was heartwarming.
As we learn more about how this nursing home operates, we realize that they do no always care about the needs of every patient. Those that have no family or visitors are often tossed aside and forgotten until others with family members that are visible are cared for. This is unfortunately very true. When members of the staff are fired, suspended or discharged for no reason, or if they tend to side with Gabriella, they leave her wondering and asking many questions. John, the administrator was replaced with someone who had no clue about anything and the head nurse, had it in for Gabriella and in turn Nick.
When she saw that he had a bed sore and that her care plan was removed action was taken by her but if she did not stay with him practically day and night who knows if he would have survived at all. Waking up and finally speaking somewhat and with the help of some of the staff Nick was able to be heard and understood but would he ever go home?
Lives are held in the balance when loved ones are placed in these homes and in this case a hospital that was only concerned with their own needs and wants and when a patient like Nick needed more, they preferred to rid themselves of the problem.
The harsh realities come through and the admiration one has for Gabriella runs high as the final chapters reveal the dramatic conclusion.
The final weeks were filled with stress, dealing with the final days at Lavender Gardens, wanting Nick to be at home in his own environment and having the last Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s with him. With the help of the Hospice staff although at times unfeeling, uncaring in demeanor and the support of Doctor Yurkevich, she got everything in place and took on the herculean job of caring for him at home. With a nurse coming only once a week, another coming three times a week and with the support of the Hospice Chaplain she managed until it was time for Nick to sing his last songs and go to his next journey.
The last few chapters allow readers to understand what happens when someone passes at one, the coroner’s claim that he might have been abused, the preparations needed to sign the documents, the people at the Crematorium and the final farewell will bring tears to your eyes. From a hospital mistake or a medication mistake the events that took place, the changes in her life and the discord that many medical professionals showed with their dispassionate attitudes, their lack of caring, misdiagnosis and a doctor who managed to cover it up and should not go unpunished, author Gloria J. Yorke tells a story of a man who she loved more than life itself, the pictures bring it to life. An doctor with an ego bigger than her head made the judgment to administer Nick a sleeping pill even though, Gabriella objected and ignored her pleas. The next morning he was in a coma. The staff encouraged her to let him go but she is strong willed and will not give up. Doctors become so complacent at times and patients that need constant care are often just fluffed off and told they will be okay even when it is quite prevalent that something is wrong. The Code of Medical Ethics reminds us that doctors promise: to keep the patient form harm, not prescribe unnecessary drugs, show no racial bias, protect patient information and teach their secrets to the next generation” What happens when they forget what they so solemnly promised? Read this story, hear her words, feel her emotional pain and learn the true definition of love, patient advocacy and the ending where we learn about how she and Nick still connect in a special way.
This is a story that defines the true meaning of Medical Manslaughter. Gloria thank you for sharing your story with me and so many others.
Fran Lewis: Just reviews/MJ magazine/MJ network
No comments yet.