I spent 4 days at the Coquina Center for rehab after having a total right hip replacement. I arrived on Monday night and 15 minutes later my roommate arrived. She was a 90 year old woman with a broken pelvis. The first night was the beginning of the 4 day nightmare I was about to embark on. There was a patient in the hallway screaming at the top of his lungs for his mommy all night long. The lady next door had the tv turned all the way up all night long. I brought a sound machine with me which did little to drown either of them out. This happened every night. This was supposed to be the short term rehab wing. Well they had a couple of long term care residents there too. One of the things you need most is rest when you're recovering and I sure wasn't getting any there. I complained to enough people about the lady next door with her TV turned up all night long that they finally ordered head phones for her or at least they said they did.
I asked for dinner when I got there. It was so disgusting I couldn't even eat it. I never ate one meal that came while I was there. After being there for a couple of days, I learned there was a breakfast bar where you could get breakfast cooked to order.
I started realizing that my roommate couldn't remember things that had happened just a few hours earlier. This became a big deal when it came to pain medication. They had her on pain medication by request. Well that's difficult when you can't remember to request it. She also had a fear of taking pain medication because of a bad experience years ago. So she was trying to just take tylenol. I kept explaining that she needed to take the real pain meds so she could start getting better. But when the nurse would ask if she wanted pain medication she would say tylenol. This also confused her when the nurse would ask her as she thought she was taking everything she could. When I finally talked to her enough and got her to start requesting pain medication, they would forget to bring it and one time at 3:30 in the morning the nurse said he didn't want to give it to her because he wanted to make sure she could have more when she had physical therapy. That was ridiculous as PT was hours away. So he didn't bring her anything.
Every time she had to go to the bathroom one of us would pull the call button, wait 10 minutes, then pull the other call button, wait 10 minutes and then I would walk to the nurses station to get someone. This happened every day, almost all day long.
I stopped using the bathroom in the room. They would take her bed pan and turn it upside down on my hand rail to dry so I would have to move it to go to the bathroom. It took me 3 days to get the bathroom cleaned. The floor was sticky and it smelled disgusting. The last day I was there the trashcan was overflowing with soiled diapers and there were used gloves on the floor. They also wouldn't show up in a timely manner to help her back off the toilet. One time I was at the nursing station again, trying to get someone to help her and she got back in the wheel chair on her own. This was very dangerous for her to try but she got frustrated waiting so long to get help. They even locked me out on the patio one night. I was reading a book after a friend brought me dinner and the door wouldn't open when I went to go inside. I walked around the front of the building and came in the main entrance. I stopped by the window on my way in to tell them the door didn't work. She said all the doors automatically lock at 6pm. I said it would be nice if they told us that or put up a sign and that they really needed better communication there and she agreed. They have 3 patios. There was a button you could press if you needed assistance but there were people there that may not have been able to do that and could get stuck out there.
I wouldn't recommend this place to anyone. It's easy to see how these places get away with so much when so much of their population can't remember anything. When her family members would ask how she was doing, she would say she was happy and everything was great because she couldn't remember the previous hours and probably wouldn't have said anything anyways not wanting to upset her children.
On the upside, the PT and OT staff was very good there. It's a shame the rest of the staff wasn't as good as they were.
When you're looking for a place for a loved one, it's not enough to tour one. You have to spend some time there. Watch the lights come on over the doors and see how long it takes for them to respond. When I asked what the acceptable response rate was they said 12 minutes. Well for a 90 year old that could be 5 minutes too long when you have to go to the bathroom.