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Old 05-11-2004, 01:16 PM   #1
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Exclamation Friend in Amarillo needs help

I know this is way way off topic, but I know airstreamers have hearts of gold. I have a bed-ridden friend in amarillo,TX, who has diabeties, multiple chemical sensitivities, a staph infection with an abcess the size of a fist. He is in that awkward position of being denied disability, (it takes years to get disability) having no money, no family and no friends in the area. I was wondering if there is anyone in Amarillo that would be willing to do a little good samaritan work. He is probably going to Northwest Texas hospital emergency room this afternoon. He doesnt drive and can barely walk. He needs an advocate- he is too sick to do it by himself and to stand up for his rights. The emergency room has already diagnoised him with a life threatening case of diabetes but gave him no medicines. He needs his apartment cleaned. Could someone find a one time house cleaner and let me know. Mostly he needs someone to take him to the hospital and make sure he gets medication and food. I'll pay (reasonable price)for a housecleaner . But I can't be there ,I can't drive. I wish a church would adopt him. He is a white american 50's and he has fallen through the cracks. He really really needs help. It would involve some time and driving and standing up for his rights. If someone there will help or know of churches or agencies that help (the local state dept seems unwilling to help- maybe because I have complained about his treatment by them so much), please let me know. Right now I am also very sick, but I am not alone and I am on antibiotics. If anyone can help please PM me. I'm not asking for money for him, just kindness, driving and physical support so he can get better. Thanks very much, silver suz
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Old 05-11-2004, 03:39 PM   #2
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Suz, I read you loud and clear on this one and hope that some contacts can come to the aid of your friend. Our oldest son, now 38, has severe diabetes with all the attendant complications; he is on disability. He lives with us and we are his active advocates in all matters because he does not have the strength and abilities anymore to do so for himself. I am confidant, from our experience, that your friend does need an advocate in the vicinity, someone to stand up for him. Is he receiving wound care--essential! What services are working on his behalf? Is your friend living alone? This may be the place to begin. I don't believe our son would be alive today if he were alone and caring fully for himself. Hardly anyone realizes that diabetes is so debilitating, but when you have that plus other factors, the dangers are compounded almost beyond tolerance. Please let us know the progress on this.
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Old 05-11-2004, 04:14 PM   #3
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Silver Suz,
What your friend needs is for someone to contact the Adult Protective Services oon his behalf. APS is the adult division of the Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory Services where many of their staff also investigate child abuse. You may file a report of concern by contacting them at 1-800-252-5400. This agency investigates reports of abuse, neglect, and or exploitation of elderly and or disabled adults. They are charged by law to begin an investigation within 24 hours of your report. A concerned socialworker will immediately visit your friend and assess his situation as to what resources he needs to remedy his situation. All assistance, if offered, is free of charge to any person receiving the services. Investigations are conducted without regard to income or social status. He does not need to be receiving some form of disability in order to be assessed as a disabled person. A wide range of services are offered including paid caretakers to clean his house, prepare his meals and provide transportation. If needed, he will be referred to home health services, assisted with the purchase of medications, and provided advocacy assistance in applying for social security disability or SSI disability benefits. If your friend is without food or clothing, food and clothing will be provided. The agency will advocate for medical care, rent and utility assistance, and other needed services.

At any point, your friend will be able to decline further services as an adult. Acceptance of services from this agency is a client determined perogative. They will not impose services upon adults who are capable of understanding the consequences of their decisions. Only good can come from your referral.

How do I know these things? I retired after 31 years of service from this agency about three years ago. Prior to making your phone call, jot down his full name, phone number, address and as much other pertinent information as possible, so as not to delay the agency's assistance for lack of critical information.

Good Luck
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Old 05-11-2004, 06:53 PM   #4
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Dear Mr. Stephens, I have contacted this agency on 2 other occasions in 2003 for this friend I even have his case numbers.. Once when he was seriously suicidal (I have a master's in psych) and another when he had no food or money and they took him to the emergency room where he was diagnoised as seriously diabetic. The state agency has responded within 24 hours each time I've called. But the local agency drops the ball. Even tho diagnoised with diabetes ,he's never gotten medicine. No one drives him to the places where he is supposed to show up in person to fill out forms. He's too fuzzy to fill out the forms properly or to know what to ask. Since he cant get there -they drop him. It's catch-22. Same with food banks- he needs to go there to get food, and he cant.
He is all alone and too sick to get up and take care of himself and too exhausted to fight the local bureaucracy. I kno what it's like when I'm sick during the day and too sick to even get up and get a glass of water, even tho thirsty. I just feel like rolling over and dying- and that's the way he feels. To say something like- walk to the hospital 1/2 mile away- it might as well be on the other side of the moon. He has no money for food or meds, even asprin. I've intervened on his electirc bill a couple of times and its like $30 but they were going to shut him off. If he got better he could do business from a better computer (graphic art). He wants to support himself.
Georgia, no he has no meds. He has no medical care even with this fist size abcess, last week the infection was an abcess in his back teeth. Obviously the infection has gone thru his whole body and you know diabetics cant fight these off easily. Sometimes I just lie and endure for days before getting my husband to take off from work and go to the doc- I still have the infection after 2 weeks of double dose of antibiotics, and now am on a month of 100mg /day new antibiotics- havent kicked it yet. So I really know what he's going through. Why is it, if he is diagnoised by the ER doc, why dont they give him the meds to deal with it?? It's like that TV ad where you have to decide between electricity or food. I am too overwhelmed to be much help to him, but you are right , he does need an advocate. silver suz
I am too sick to follow up on this one. I don't know what to do. I'm feeling overwhelmed by it. Thanks silver suz
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Old 05-11-2004, 10:02 PM   #5
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I don't know what to say or how to respond. I know that agencies are a lot like hospitals. They are no better than the inidividuals who work there. When in a hospital, you don't have to go down to the personell office to look at a nurse's resume to tell whether or not she is a good nurse. You can tell by the way she comes to you whether or not she cares about you aqs a patient and whether or not she has ever thought what it would be like to be laying where you are and to suffer from what it is that you have. Unfortunately state agencies are much the same. It may be that whoever has responded in the past did not know much about what to do, or like the nurse, never thought much about the problems your friend is facing. If that is what has happened, then I would encourage you to keep calling this problem into the hotline for your friend. Each time you call, someone has to visit. Perhaps, either you will eventually get a better qualified social worker to investigate or perhaps the situation will change just enough to allow your friend to qualify for some program f heor which does not now qualify.
The second factor that probably is in play here is the fact that when I practiced here in rural Central Texas, I always felt that services were not the same throughout the state of Texas. Texas is broken up into a number of regions and services within each region do not necessarily mirror each other. I always felt that in spite of having fewer resources, my rural clients received better services because it was easier for me to get rural neighbors involved in helping people than I felt was the case in more metropolitan areas.
The final thing that may be affecting services is that I understand from what few friends I have left in social services that our current Governor and the Texas legislature have been just about completely devestated most all of the social agencies here in Texas. That was a factor in my decision to retire. I could see what was coming. To date, they have shut down our local MHMR locally. Our local office of eleven now has only three staff remaining. With my retirement, we have no one locally to work with the elderly and disabled. Any assistance must drive here from between 70 and 100 miles away. They have terminated hundreds of correctional officers resulting in the early release of numerous prisioners. At the same time, they have severely reduced the number of probation officers. One probation office in Midland had 7 officers. Each officer had a caseload of more than 80. There are now only 2 remaining probation officers. I can't help but wonder how 2 officers are going to be able to supervise close to 300 criminals each month. When an elderly person is now placed into a nursing home, I am told that application for assistance will soon have to be done over the internet or over the phone. They are closing all of the smaller, local offices. I can't see how that will be very effective for a number of folks including those like your friend. I understand that the same thing is being done for folks needing food stamps and other forms of assistance.
Again, I am sorry. Having taken care of people in who were your friend's situation for over 30 years and in reading about his plight, I just couldn't help myself. I had to reach out and try to help. I guess I hoped things would still work as they did just three or four years ago. I guess they don't. Sorry.
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Old 05-15-2004, 06:39 PM   #6
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Well my friend is in the NW TX hospital in amarillo, since tues. It just took his almost dying to get med treatment. After stabilizing his staph infection and diabetes (His first insulin shots), they operated and removed a grapefruit sized abcess. The latest blood tests indicate a bacteria that maybe attacking his heart- in which case he'll be in for open heart surgery. All because he couldnt get meds in the beginning. There is something wrong with this country. And he is such a talented graphic artist and sci fi writer (Co-'ed with Piers Anthony). Just a little help and he could be a really productive member of society. Still if there is anyone in the Amarillo who could be a coordinator/advocate for him- it would be a tremendous help. Just keeping paperwork, appointments etc on track and asking questions he's too sick to ask. No one in Amarillo? silversuz
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Old 05-21-2004, 04:07 AM   #7
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Advocacy

Suz...
I came on here to post a request for prayers...and now I see your friend's dilemma...and I'm just almost plain too ashamed to even drop it here as part of the post; but I will under the line.

Regarding your friend...I just want to add that he is on my prayer list tonite...even if I can't stay awake for anyone else---he will be prayed for. Here is my earlier post:
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First,
to Amarillo:
Tell your friend to get a Social Security Disability attorney...and File An Appeal. If he has passed the deadline...have him appeal THAT...stating that he wasn't aware he could get an attorney. Lots of people prevail on the THIRD or FOURTH Appeal.


Second, after reading your post...I hate to put out this request...it seems so frivolous...but here goes.

I need good thoughts and/or prayers sent up for Bear & my new home. I found THE perfect place, and then I start hearing disparaging things about it. From a girl where I work, from a couple of other RV park managers. These things all sound like gossip ("urban legend"?) from disgruntled people to me. But, I can't tell. Right now, I'm being "led" by my emotions---and I'm so in love with the beauty of it, the view, the flowers, the neighbors, the manicured lawns, and the Clubhouse is called------YOU'LL NEVER GUESS.... It's called "BEAR's DEN".
So, I really need outside help. (my own isn't to be trusted).

Thanx guys.
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NOW,
God Bless You to Suz, try to get some rest...and you are to be remembered before I close my eyes as well.

Life is so full of changes---and our good health is THE ONLY thing---(beside reaching out to be good to each other)---that matters after all.
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Old 05-21-2004, 06:38 AM   #8
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Dear Help

Your friend at his age is probably a military veteran. If that is the case you might contact the VA for assistance. Diebeties has been associated with Agent Orange used in Vietnam. I was granted an additional disability because of that. I'm sure that if he is a Vet that the VA hospital would be there to serve his needs.

Good luck.
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Old 05-21-2004, 10:35 AM   #9
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He's American Indian in some part- which accounts for high rates of diabetes. No he is not a Vet-that's the first thing I asked. He is also not registered as AM indian as he was adopted at birth. Too bad. He doesnt do drugs, he doesnt drink, and he has no health insurance. If he had had a dose of antibiotics with the first abcess -it wouldnt had gone on so badly. He' s a tremendously creative person, having done books, graphic art etc mostly in science fiction. But now he is too sick- to get work ,to collect money for work he has done. It's a hard downward spiral to break when you are all by yourself.
I think you need to let the forum know about the park you are interested in and see if anyone here knows the place. You need another's opinion. You are too needy for a "Good place" and that biases your decision. So let people kow on a seperate thread what their opinion is on the park, don't forget to put where it is. I wish you a safe place and the comfort of finding a real "home". Remember always choose a site that is uphill and upwind. suz
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