A Winning Belt Turns Into WrestleMania
It was a moment of clarity.
Unfortunately, my attempt at making a bright, clear consommé has for the moment turned into a muddled chowder!
Even worse, it was writing this column that started it.
I’ve written so often in this column about using my Molift assistive device for transfers that I had a YouTube link ready to go to demonstrate it. Then, somehow I didn’t have the link anymore, so I looked up a new one. The new Molift link reveals a new strap for the device made by Swedish manufacturer Etac that allows a carer to lift a client for standing transfer without help from others. It looks safer than other options and appears to be less work.
Many moons ago — when the moon was 10.36 inches closer than it is now (that was seven years ago, peeps) — an occupational therapist (OT) from the U.K.’s Health and Care Professions Council, a regulatory body, gave — or rather loaned — me a Molift. This is how it is done in the U.K. However, its very existence seems to have been lost in the pale, pale moonlight of time.
I certainly wasn’t trying to lose a carer. I’m a lump who’s obviously getting incrementally weaker. However, standing up is incredibly good for me, even if only for a few minutes a day. It also means I can wear pull-up incontinence pads. In fact, I’ve now got a terrific new system in which the pad is shoved in the back of a pair of knickers.
If I couldn’t stand up, I’d have to use wrap-around pads that I’d put on in bed. Of course, I’ve been weak enough before that this has been a necessity. Somehow persisting in efforts to stand up is one of the ways I battle MS. My neurologist was surprised I could still do this.
I’ve been challenging medical orthodoxy for such a long time — including with my response to urinary tract infections and in fighting to become a patient of a lymphedema clinic — that I’ve only just now gotten used to getting things done.
So I bought the new strap, which works wonderfully.
But now I must take my licks and grind through the bureaucracy. First, an OT from the council must assess it, which I managed to organize in just a week. She verbally agreed that the strap was beneficial to me. Now, the home healthcare company must train its operatives to use it.
As I write this, I’ve received a couple more calls from the OT, who is scything through the bureaucracy amazingly, all by herself. She’s coming back tomorrow, and the home-care company has agreed that she can train my carers. If all goes well, I will have circumnavigated a morass of Catch-22s.
If not, I’ve made the mistake of kicking the hornet’s nest just as it’s getting warmer!
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