I cared for my Aunt Naomi until she passed away five years ago. She was in and out of the hospital and nursing home before she left this world. If you're ill and in the hospital, it's best to have someone who can advocate for you. Here's a perfect example of what I'm talking about:
Aunt Naomi had been in the hospital for a few days. On the third day, the nurse told me they were discharging her to go home. Naomi insisted that she didn't feel well. I informed the nurse that she needed to go to a nursing home in her condition. We couldn't take care of her at home. Here's what the nurse had to say:
Nurse: I'm not letting her go to a nursing home. She will go downhill in a nursing home. Sometimes family just has to step up to the plate.
Me: I'd like to speak to the doctor.
The nurse goes to the nurses station and calls the doctor. I'm watching from the hallway as she's speaking to him.
Nurse: Blah, blah, blah, blah.
She comes and tells me the doctor wants to speak to me.
Doctor: I can't approve the nursing home for Naomi.
Aunt Naomi is sent home by ambulance. As I got her into bed, she said she felt really sick. An hour later, I sent her back to the emergency hospital via the paramedics.
After some tests were run, the doctor informs me that she has pneumonia and a blocked bowl. They had to run a tube down her nose into her stomach to pump out the green bile that had backed up. It was not a pretty sight.
Lesson Learned: My Aunt Naomi would have died a very unpleasant death at home if I had not acted decisively. There were other relatives in the house, and I asked them what they thought we should do. All I got was "I don't know." Take action when you know something is wrong. Don't let medical personnel intimidate you. Take control when you see other family members are being passive or apathetic.