A call for our benevolent rescuer to assist a little old lady who is “groggy/won’t wake up” at the local nursing home. I am also groggy, mainly because I’m working a night shift for some stupid reason.
The nurse hands me some paperwork, and through a spirited attempt at speaking the English language, relays that the patient is more tired than usual, and won’t wake up.
A quick glance at my watch tells me it is, in fact, bed time. Even for little old ladies. Especially for little old ladies.
“What kind of medical problems does this delightfully somnolent female have?” I half-heartedly inquire of the nursing staff.
“I don’t really know. She isn’t my patient. Tonight is my first night with her.” is the reply, as she hands over a stack of paperwork.
“Here, you can have the Power of Attorney papers back. I don’t think we need to call her son in Connecticut at this time of night any way. I’ll take the Med Record, though.”
Her Med Record tells me that she has bladder problems, thyroid problems, and dementia.
And, what is this? Someone gave her a milligram of Melatonin at 9 p.m. A repeated side glance at my watch confirms that it is approaching 10 p.m.
No wonder she is tired.
“Did you give her these medications?”
“Yes, I did. Those are my initials in the little boxes.”
“Well, melatonin is supposed to make you tired and sleepy, especially when you take this much.”
“I just give her what is on the paper.”
“I understand. But she will be fine. She doesn’t need an ambulance, much less a trip to the hospital.”
“The doctor says she has to go.”
Sigh. “Which one?”