CHAPERONED and CHAUFFEURED DOCTOR VISITS
I was Mom and Dad's chauffeur. Just before Dad was released from the hospital to come live with us, I asked the doctor what they thought of letting Dad drive. The doctor said, "You would be negligent to let him drive." I responded, "Will you put that in writing?" In Dad's mind, it would only be a matter of time before he would be driving again. I never had to show him the letter. All I had to say was that I had it. After a while, he stopped asking. Instead, he would tell people, "They won't let me drive." I would smile and say, "Yes Dad, you can't see, can't hear, can't turn your head, and your legs are like rubber. Other than that, there's no reason you can't drive." He would smile sheepishly and say, "Touché."
Even though Mom went into the doctor's office with Dad and took notes, she was sometimes afraid to ask questions. She was afraid if they challenged the medical treatment, they would lose their free military medical privileges. And when we discussed the visit afterwards, I could see that, even with her notes, it wasn't always clear to her what had transpired. And I had unanswered questions. It was a little crowded in the examination room with all three of us plus the doctor, but that's the way we started doing it. We wanted to get it right. Mom and I both now took notes and asked questions. MORE>