Freddie's Healthcare Events
Meeting with Dr. Udekwu
Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014
Meeting with Dr. Udekwu
July 22, 2014
Meeting with Dr. Udekwu - July 22nd, 2014 5:00 PM
After numerous emails and phone calls from Dr. Lawson regarding the possibility and scheduling of this meeting, it did occur as requested alone with Dr. Udekwu on July 22, 2014 in the 5A conference room with he, Eddie and Fred.
We sat down with Dr. Udekwu in the conference room after he asked the unit secretary to pull Freddie’s chart. He had his own paperwork with him including notes he had taken from his evaluation and his time spent with Freddie. He began by talking about his evaluation of Freddie. He stated that there were some responses from Freddie during his evaluation but they were not significant. The conversation turned to the possibility of the sedative medications affecting Freddie’s responses. Dr. Udekwu said that the levels where not at a level that someone couldn’t function but agreed that it was a valid point they very well may have a more dramatic affect with Freddie.
Eddie explained how Freddie showed more abilities when the meds were not administered during GI problems around Christmas but hadn’t been able to respond as good as he had while getting the meds since the switch in 2012. We pointed out in 2012 when Freddie was at his best and almost off the vent during the time WakeMed decided to go after guardianship and stopped weaning Freddie, there was opposing neurological opinions that were just ignored. The meds were switched from simulative to sedative and Freddie has been left declining since. Dr. Udekwu said he didn’t see any reason why the medications couldn’t be adjusted slowly and would follow that up with Dr. Lawson.
I told him how much I appreciated all he had done and tried to do for Freddie over the years. We then discussed with him how we were pleased that WakeMed was now willing to talk and hopeful that Freddie may get the treatments that he has been needing. We told him that we do not want to dwell on the negatives of the past but just want to work with WakeMed positively and do what is best for Freddie. We want to get back where we were in 2012 when Freddie was doing so good and continue to move forward from there. We talked about all that was working to help Freddie and how he was almost off the vent and how everybody was just disappointed when the treatments were withdrawn. We talked about how it will take a lot of effort to get back where we were in 2012 and then we could start moving forward again and how that will take time. I said that the only way to do that would be to put everything that was on the table that was and would help him then. He then talked about how good of a condition that Freddie’s lung was in not having any infection and therefore the removal of that lung would not be an option that he would recommend at this time. He also said that there was no reason why we could not wean Freddie from the vent but he could not assure that it would be successful or not. I said that’s why we have to put everything that was on the table in 2012 back on the table now, if we are going to give an all out effort to help him get off the vent. We will have to have the bronch washes and chest tubes and if needed the surgery on the table if we are going to give an honest effort to help Freddie. He reiterated that the lung was in much better condition now than before and was free from infection and he doesn’t feel that removal now may be necessary. I brought up that he had also said in the past that if the lung wasn’t able to function properly that the only way we could get Freddie off the vent would be to remove it. He said again that the lung really is in better condition now than in 2012 and he thought we should move forward with trying to wean Freddie off the vent to see how it goes.
We discussed with him, the desire for him to take over Freddie’s care. He then at length, explained why he could not take over the care of Freddie. He painfully tried to explain the “autonomy of medicine”. Which he went into how doctors are taught and how they practice medicine. He said with him being a trauma surgeon, he specializes in emergent and life-saving care as the other doctors specialize in vent management and it is a process that takes an extended amount of time. So I then pointed that there had been doctors with different opinions. I said there have been doctors that have wanted to and were helping Freddie. I asked why is it that; if we have doctors that their opinion is what we agree with, why can’t we go with that doctor? He again mentioned the “autonomy of medicine” and tried to explain that the hospital’s system works in a way that wouldn’t allow him to come into Freddie’s care and the system of Freddie’s doctors wouldn’t allow for any of those doctors that agree with us to treat Freddie.
He then brought up that Dr. Lawson had informed him of the facility and the possibility of Freddie being transferred there. I explained to him that with the refusal to treat Freddie over the last couple of years that we had actually been looking for a place like this in trying to get Freddie help. I told him we have been looking into this place since Dr. Lawson had informed us of it. We told him what we knew of the facility and the fact that there is a pulmonologist there and ask him if he could he speak with them. We expressed to him the reason we wanted him to talk to the doctor was our concerns with all the negative records being kept on Freddie to justify not treating was going to present a huge, negative obstacle for Freddie having any doctor take Freddie’s potential seriously. Dr. Udekwu then said he would talk to this doctor. But he said that before he talked to him, he wanted me to go down there and look at the place to see if there was even a possibility that we were interested in moving Freddie there. Providing I liked it, that he would even go down there with me to meet with this doctor prior to making a decision to transfer Freddie.
The meeting concluded with conversation that we were putting everything on the table that needed to be done to help Freddie whether it is done in WakeMed or in a facility if we found that it would be a better option for helping Freddie than WakeMed. Dr. Udekwu said that he would go back to Dr. Lawson regarding the medication changes as well as to discuss the vent weaning. We told him we would continue to find out more information about the facility and that I was going to go there to look at it.