Restraints at the state hospital?

P question

It’s been awhile since I’ve written.  As usual, things with Brandon never get busy when I’m relaxing at home with nothing to do.

The state hospital admitted Brandon several weeks ago as scheduled.  Part of my dilemma in writing this book is where to end it.  Do I include the most recent sagas while working on the past?

At this point, Brandon is his usual self.  He’s refusing all medication and therapy.  He dropped 60 lbs. again (“but he’s currently at a good BMI (Body Mass Index)!”) since August.  The private case manager saw him last week.  She reports that she has never seen him this psychotic.  The person supervising their visit also reported he had been recently placed in restraints for banging his head.  Of course when I called to inquire about it, there’s no record of it in his chart and no one on the unit has confirmed it.  So, what really happened?

Without getting too specific, let’s just say this hospital had a problem with restraining patients in the past (common?).  Since I’ve had so many headaches with Brandon, I decided I needed to contact someone at the top from the beginning of his admission.  I’ve been talking with the Assistant Clinical Director about Brandon’s future.  She happened to mention an accreditation body has been there recently for inspection.  I’m guessing one of the hospital’s goals is to decreasing the amount of restraints used, so considering the upcoming inspection, the staff probably didn’t document it.

I’m pretty sure it happened.  I asked Brandon if he preferred being in the hospital rather than jail (he was there 6 mos.) and he answered “Well, in jail they just lock everyone in their cells if there’s a problem.  Here, they hold you down.”  Brandon says some pretty bizarre things, but there’s usual some kernel of truth in what he says.

This is one of the problems with being far away.  You just don’t know what the real story is.  And I find myself saying “What?  When did that happen?” much more often than necessary.

The clinical director promised to look into this.  If he was restrained, then they can petition for emergency meds.  The faster they put him on medication, the quicker they will do another incompetency evaluation and try to restore his competency.  If he’s still incompetent, then they may consider civilly committing him so they can realistic plan for his future.

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2 thoughts on “Restraints at the state hospital?

  1. Pingback: Emergency Meds v. physical restraints « Its Madness: On Guardianship of the Mentally Ill from Afar

  2. Pingback: Forcing medical treatment for severely mentally ill « Its Madness: On Guardianship of the Mentally Ill from Afar

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