The provision of quality health care services is not a guarantee that patients will recover within a short time. Disease and patient management is a complex process that requires the efforts and support of all stakeholders concerned with ensuring a patient recovers successfully and within a short time. Some health conditions are long-term and this means that there are no prospects of patients recovering from them. However, proper health care services and family support ensures the patient lives a normal and happy life while putting the condition at its weakest level.
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Family support in managing terminal illness is important since it supplements the medical services offered by health care providers. The support that family members provide to their sick loved ones helps the patients to understand that the family still loves, appreciates, and values them. Patients suffering from any illness require emotional and psychological support to ensure they understand their conditions and feel they are still part of their families and society. This paper examines a case study of failed family support to a sick patient and the remedies that could have been used to alleviate the situation.
The case study is of a 15-year-old boy suffering from reversible yet life-threatening kidney failure. The treatment being offered was expected to alleviate the pain that comes with kidney complications. There was no possibility of performing a kidney transplant and this means that the doctors had to use other interventions to manage the condition. These approaches included a healthy diet, exercising, and medication that were supposed to alleviate the condition. The nurses preferred that the patient be taken back home and these services are provided to him while at his parents’ place. This was the best alternative since it reduced the costs of hospital bills and ensured the patient was close to his family members.
Parents and other family members were supposed to offer emotional and psychological support to help the patient to recover faster. However, the boy experienced several recurring and new infections and this means that doctors realized his parents and other family members were not taking good care of him. Sick people cannot take good care of themselves because they are weak and the pain they experience might also not allow them to do anything that requires a lot of movement or energy. Therefore, they need the assistance of family members and friends to ensure they eat healthy foods, take baths, and visit the washrooms when they need to do so.
The determination of the medical treatments and processes to be used to manage kidney failure includes the commitment of the family to provide aftercare services. These services include following-up on the clinical appointments, ensuring that the patient has taken the medication as prescribed by the doctor, and eating a healthy diet. The patient is supposed to live in a hygienic place and this means that the boy’s room should be cleaned thoroughly and regularly. Maintaining healthy hygiene was necessary to ensure that new infections did not develop and the existing ones responded positively to treatment.
The hospital was the best place where the boy would have received treatment and avoided all the unnecessary complications and infections associated with the home environment. In addition, the boy would have recovered faster with proper care and assistance from the doctors and the nurses who would have ensured a strict dietary schedule and the right medication.
The patient in this case study is not in a stable mental state to determine what medical processes are suitable for him. The mental illness affecting the patient could not allow him to make any decision that would improve the disease management program and ensure a positive recovery process is maintained. The Patient Self Determination Act of 1990 passed by the U.S. Congress states that competent people are allowed to make their desires known and what they wished for during end-of-life experiences. Also, extended in this Act was the Durable Power of Attorney which gives a competent person the right to assist in making end-of-life decisions when the individual is no longer competent.
The appropriate surrogate to make the decision should be the one that meets the ethical, moral, and financial obligations required by a patient. In the case of the 15-year-old boy, the mother fits as the surrogate. Other options include asking the court to place the child either in foster care or in a medical facility; however, these options may affect the boy psychologically by taking him away from his home and family environment. The child is unable to cooperate with health care providers since he does not understand how delicate his condition is and the risks he faces. These and other aspects of his mental condition made it difficult for the patient to receive quality medical and family help to live like a normal person.