Russell Harrington is my father.
March 8, 2005 my father went into cardiac arrest after taking a nap. My father was only 57 when my entire family was informed that although the EMT's revived him twice, he was being transported to the hospital, would require immediate surgery and was unconscious. Within 10 days my father required a triple bypass, still unconscious he had a stroke and seizures. After 30 days in ICU he was transferred to an LTACH (long term acute care hospital) for another 20 days or so. After that my father was transferred to an acute rehab hospital for 2 more weeks, then was transferred to a brain rehab group home (his diagnosis was anoxic brain injury secondary to stroke and cardiac arrest), then he was transported to a skilled nursing facility and finally he was transferred to a long term care facility. Within one year, my father was in-patient at 6 different medical facilities! Even through all that my family still hoped there was a chance to bring him home. My mom even built on a screened-in back porch with celling fans and enough room for an outdoor couch so he could spend time outside. You see my father was an outdoors man, worked in the construction field all this adult life.
My father could still walk (with assistive devises at times), looked somewhat normal, but he had been diagnosed with dementia. You see, my dad started to be very aggressive when he was upset, he would obsess over objects or whatever he was fixated on that moment, he would curse around people as never before, he would walk down the street not knowing where he was , who he was with, he was incontinent at times, he was always nervous and could pass out at anytime. It became unsafe to even bring him home for small visits or an overnight stay. We thought that it was best for him to be with us at home, but little did we know, we were wrong.
Through-out all of this as a family we had many questions, but didn't really know exactly what to ask. I know that's a odd thing to say but although I worked in healthcare, I had no idea that we would need to make so many decisions and choices; both financially and medically which could affect the rest of his life... I mean it affects your whole world and my family was just getting by. My mother was blessed by two to three people that really helped us as we were going through this nightmare blindfolded. The best we could do was to take people's advise on what seemed to be the "right" choice. We are very grateful for those that helped, but looking back, it would have been so much easier if we had someone who could have said: "This is what you need to know: This is what you should expect: This is what we recommend you do."
So....In 2007, I decided to go into admissions and marketing at a skilled nursing facility. I wanted to go into this direction of healthcare to help others through the maze our family went through. I knew immediately that not only had I realized my career, I realized my purpose. I also realized my story wasn't unlike others. There are so many families affected by someone they love needing some type of medical assistance. Working in this field has given me the inside track on what is required of home health, skilled nursing, long term care, long term acute care, acute rehab, hospice, assisted living, independent living, Medicare, Medicaid, Managed Care, Commercial Insurance and many other services.
I established Placing Russell as a service to families and caregivers in honor of my father, Russell Harrington. This is his gift to you. Please let us guide you through the healthcare maze.
Carol Hayes, Russell's daughter