What is the deal with this psychiatric hospital?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Whatsername, Apr 7, 2009.

  1. Whatsername

    Whatsername New Member

    Am I just lucky, or has anyone else had an experience with your child's psychiatric hospital that can only be described as h*ll on wheels?!
    my difficult child has been in since last Thursday. Upon admission, I was told that the average stay is 5-7 days. I was told that I could expect so many phone calls keeping me in the loop with everything. I was told that at visits, we were encouraged to bring snacks and board games. Well... yeah right. I have to call there if I want any information. ANY Info! I get passed around from dept to dept. Yesterday, at the Family Meeting, we were told that he would certainly be out by Wednesday or Thursday and they wouldn't dream of keeping him over the holiday. I chatted with the SW today, she says that the doctor has a tentative discharge date of Monday the 13th! She says she doesn't know why anyone would have given any other date. I call the unit to get updates on him, and the charge nurse gives a short one liner like she is annoyed to even talk to me. The doctor calls and leaves a message at 2 on my home phone when i ask to be contacted via cell during the day cuz i work. I phone him back at 3 and he's gone for the day. They tell me they are going to have a treatment team meeting today and because of some misunderstanding, that doesn't happen. Tried to bring enjoyable items to visits, they say that's a no-no even tho i have forms that say otherwise.
    At this point i am very fed up. I just want to go get him! Oh and on top of that, I get a call from fiscal saying that the insurance doesn't feel he needs to be there anymore so they quit paying. I asked, why don't they discharge him then? The doctor still feels he needs to be there. They are going to help me get medical assistance for him, but still!!
    Sorry this is such a long rant. As you can see, this is our first time, and god-willing the last, at a psychiatric hospital!:ashamed:
  2. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Well, they sure don't sound very organized or like they communicate amongst themselves very much. I think 5-7 days is a common amount of time BECAUSE most insurance companies don't pay for longer than that for an acute stay. If they are getting assistance to pay for a longer stay, this is a good thing. The day may come when you need to access that "assistance" again and it appears that whatever agency you can get your difficult child's name in now could prove to be an asset as time passes. But, if you can't afford it out of pocket, you might want to let them know that he can't stay longer than what they can get covered by someone else.

    I think all of us who have had to put our difficult child in the psychiatric hospital have ended up frustrated for one reason or another. One common reason is that when they come home, there isn't much change, if any. Good luck!! Are there any other phosps around you in case you need to go this route again?
  3. helpangel

    helpangel Active Member

    They have done that stuff to me too in the past. Her first psychiatric hospital stay the nurse just dialed my work number and handed Angel the phone - one of my co-workers said "I think its a prank but it could be your kid" so I took the call yep it was Angel 6yo first time away from home scared out of her mind and all I could think while talking to her is I want to get my hands on that nurse!

    Here we have option of 2 psychiatric hospital and I am to the point now I absolutely won't allow her to go into one of them. For some reason the crisis center always tries to get a bed in the one I hate first, I just don't get that! And then they get really offended when I pull out a discharge summary from 2005 and declare in a loud voice Dr. $#@%@ almost killed my kid. When they look at the summary and read the part about "mom refused consent for Ritalin" then further down the page "discharge medications - Ritalin LA"; then and only then will they put a call to the good psychiatric hospital to see if they have any beds.

    I would give it to them in writing that when admission took place that you were under the impression that you had insurance coverage to cover this and if insurance isn't paying please send discharge as not many could afford to pay out of pocket for this. Who knows it just might get him home for the holiday.

    So sorry you have to be going thru this nightmare, I hope he comes home soon.
  4. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm sorry you are getting the run around. It shouldn't be like that. The first two times our difficult child was in the psychiatric hospital they kept him for 3 1/2 and 3 weeks. The doctors. were able to convince the insurance company it was needed (and it was but we weren't getting the run around).

    Do you have anyone there that you can talk to so they can help you with connecting with everyone else?

    I'm sending gentle hugs your way.
  5. maril

    maril New Member

    Others give good suggestions and helpful information.

    My son had his first (2-day) stay in a psychiatric hospital in 10/08 and it was a learning experience for us all. difficult child was "freaked out" by the violent behavior of one of the other patients there and was so glad to come home. Other than my son's negative feelings about the experience, I felt the staff was helpful, and nothing out of the ordinary occurred. He is currently hospitalized in a dual diagnosis program; so far, so good. I do keep my eye on things, ask relevant questions, offer information that I think is important (i.e., medication intolerance/reactions -- my concerns), and generally feel that our role as advocates for our kids cannot be underestimated; am not ashamed to speak up if I feel I am justified. With that said, I certainly do realize the importance of and am comforted by the fact that my son is in the hands of professionals! Just the opinions of one old mom for whatever that is worth! ;)

    Good luck to you and your DS. I am sending positive thoughts and hugs your way.
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2009
  6. Whatsername

    Whatsername New Member

    Thanks for your replies everyone! Yesterday was rough, and the rant was much needed. I've now been able to collect my thoughts. I have a phone meeting with the doctor today, and no matter what, we are getting him home for easter, even if it is on a pass.
    As it turns out, the reason they want to keep him longer is because they want to trial a medication (per difficult child). I can understand why they want him there for that.
    I do plan on writing a letter. A very thought out, and professional letter.
    Marilynne, you are absolutely right about being an advocate for him!

    Everyone have a nice day!
  7. maril

    maril New Member

    It sounds like today is a little better, and I continue to wish you luck and hope you have a nice day, too! Hang in there. :sunny: