April 20, 2013

CDE's Ignore Patients with Depression

I had wondered when I would receive the next email from someone dealing with depression and being ignored by a CDE. This time it was two emails about four hours apart. Both had been referred to a CDE and did need assistance for diabetes. One is a type 1 and the other a type 2. Both had been diagnosed since the beginning of the new year and both were not receiving family or for one even spousal support.

The person with type 1 (19 years of age) was rejected by his family and they did not want him around because there was no history of diabetes and therefore he could not have diabetes. In essence, his family had turned their back on him. He was not welcome in their home and they did not want contact from him until he grew up and admitted he did not have diabetes. Is it any wonder he had depression?

He said in his email that they were almost done with his CDE appointment, but he wanted some information and help with his depression. He stated next that it seemed to him that the CDE could not gather up her materials fast enough and say on her way out the door, that she was late for another appointment. He wanted to know what it was about diabetes that drove people away from him. He knew he had depression because of the parent's rejection and how he was feeling around people. I was fortunate this time as one phone call was necessary and he had an appointment with someone that knew what to do for him. Three weeks later, he sent another email saying that he was happy with the appointment and felt that I had found him the right person. He said he would have several more appointments, but wanted to thank me.

The second person is in his late 40's and is wondering what to do. He had an appointment with a CDE and when she walked in, she asked how he was. He said he answered, depressed, and he said she turned around and left the room. He said he waited for 10 minutes and then walked to the reception area. He was told that this CDE would not see patients with depression. Now he has lost his family and has not been able to find help.

I asked him in a return email what had happened. He said that his wife had been present when he received the diagnosis and over the next month, the situation went from bad to worse. His teenagers rejected him and were asking him when he would have his legs cut off and they refused to change their eating habits. His wife would not change her cooking habits and the highly processed foods and would not prepare separate meals. He said he started cooking again and this helped for a while until the teenagers kept bringing home more horror stories about what happened to people with diabetes. Then his wife said she would not take care of him when things like this happened. He said he came home from work in March and they had moved out and two weeks later, he received divorce papers at work.

He stated that he had tried three different places to get counseling, but could not get an appointment at any of them. I asked if he had talked to his doctor or even to anyone in his church. He admitted that he had not and would talk to his doctor the next day. The next day I received an email saying his doctor had gotten him an appointment with someone and he would let me know if he was being helped. I am still waiting, but the appointment won't happen until near the end of April.

What surprises me is the lack of support the two received and the total rejection by both families. There may have been unknown facts with the second individual, but I have known other divorces where diabetes was the cause and one or the other spouse was not going to help with future health issues. Sad things can happen.

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