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Topic Time for Durable Medical Goods? Go to previous topic Go to next topic Go to higher level

By PDNewbie On 2022.06.25 01:53
When is the time to start obtaining durable medical goods and how do I get them for free?

My 79 y/o HWP was just diagnosed in February, but he seems to be progressing rapidly. He had a UTI last weekend and I had to call my son to help get him in the house. He could barely walk or get on the toilet seat. He could not get up from the couch or a chair by himself and could not move from a prone to a seated position without a lot of help. On day 2, he still could not go upstairs or take a shower or get dressed without the two of us assisting.

Thankfully, he is much better now. He can now do all of those things without help and walk about 5 blocks. However, since this is a progressive disease I want to be better prepared next time so he doesnít get hurt and I donít hurt myself.

He has a cane and We received a walker from the hospital he was just at. I also feel like we may need a raised toilet seat with arms, a shower chair, maybe a gait belt, and possibly a wheelchair for longer distances.

Am I jumping the gun? What is the best way to get these items for free? Is there anything else I might need soon? I want to be ready!

By poollady On 2022.06.25 11:58
His doctor can write a prescription for a walker, chair lift or whatever else you think he needs. Should be covered by Medicare.

By junipersage On 2022.06.27 14:39
I don't have any advice on payment, but my husband is not having as much trouble as you describe but we still have all of those things (except the gait belt). Most days he doesn't need them, but occasionally he does. On Father's Day we took him to the zoo and I brought the wheelchair since our zoo has lots of walking and is very hilly. I never know if we'll need it - sometimes it helps because of gait freezing, sometimes it helps because he shuffles his feet and after a lot of walking his toes bang into the end of his shoes and start to get sore. And sometimes he doesn't need it at all.

He used it about 70% of the time and the rest of the time we put our jackets and water bottles in it, or I had my daughter push me around instead for a rest, lol.

By far my favorite thing though is the stability pole. We have one by the tub and other by the bed. He uses the bedside one to help him turn at night when he gets stiff. He holds on to it and shifts himself. Before we had it, he would wake me up several times a night to help him turn. It's a godsend.

By PDNewbie On 2022.06.29 03:23
Thank you PoolLady. Iíve contacted my Dr. and I am taking the next steps to obtain the equipment I need. I do not have any experience with major medical issues and could really use an instruction book telling me how/when to do some of these things.

Like you, JuniperSage, I need most of this equipment just for occasional use for now. I donít want to be limited to the few block radius that he can walk. So, a wheelchair would come in handy.

I like the idea of a stability pole. I will have to consider where best to use one in our house. Thank you!

By junipersage On 2022.06.29 15:40
I forgot to say, my husband hates the idea of being a "burden" and would far rather see himself as a "helper". For that reason he was initially very reluctant to use the wheelchair. So I have spent some time casually mentioning how having a wheelchair may mean we have a shorter wait in line, or get better service when we go somewhere.

Now when I take the wheelchair with us somewhere, like to the airport or wherever, he feels like he is "helping the family" by giving us some advantage on parking or lines. I always thank him for his "help"! :)

By PDNewbie On 2022.07.01 23:44
You are a smart lady, JuniperSage! I will take your advice and try to also turn a potential negative into a positive.

By NoMatterWhat On 2022.07.09 00:56
Hello and thank you. I appreciate the opportunity to learn from you all through this forum. My HWP has not progressed to the point that we need any of this equipment yet but of course I need to be thinking ahead. We have been thinking about the changes we will need to make to our current bathroom or the possibility of adding on a new one but there are many other things, these other things, we should think about too! I will begin a plan to line these things up. I donít like feeling unprepared. We cannot control everything but we can try to do what is in our power. Sometimes that little difference is enough to help me feel somewhat in Ďcontrolí and I have a better attitude no matter what happens, because I feel that Iíve thought it through and havenít been taken by surprise. I really like the way psychology, kindness (and humor) are used with the addition of these necessary steps. Way to take it head on and handle it gracefully!


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