Mels brother is out of the ICU. Stable, with his blood pressure down to the 140/80 range, back up to 20% kidney function, and down to one dialysis session per day.
He was admitted last Thursday, and moved to the ICU Friday, with a hypertensive emergency, renal failure, and pericarditis. The proper medication, and a pericardial stent to drain the fluid moved his heart out of danger; and they've been focusing on his kidney function since.
It looks like he may end up with a kidney transplant. He's been on the list for years, but they're apparently moving him up because of this.
Meanwhile, my mothers emergency housing assistance ran out, and she still refuses to move in with us. She was supposed to have completed her paperwork to move to long term housing assistance several weeks ago; but being my mother, she didn't. Mel has been running her around from SSI to DES, to every other bureaucracy trying to get things sorted out.
Technically speaking, she should have been on disability since 2003; but they kept denying her (their policy seems to be "everybody is lying about disability so we'll just deny everyone until they either give up or sue"). Now, in order to get housing assistance she needs to get the disability sorted out.
The good news is, once she does (and it's approved), six to eight weeks from now), she'll be getting $900 a month in housing assistance, $940 a month in direct disability payments, $400 a month in food aid, medicare/aid, and state medical (called ACCHS or "access" here) and prescription coverage; which is equivalent to another $2500 a month or so out of pocket.
Not that I'm enthused about my mother taking the equivalent of a $60,000 a year income from the government; but that's the system.
This by the way is part of what we've been floating her every few months until we cut her off last year. That, and the legal bills, have kept us in a pretty poor financial situation; and the ongoing legal bills (we owe $17,500, and expect another $20,000 to come) will continue to do so at least through 2009.
But we're all alive, and reasonably well, and reasonably happy, and together; and that counts for a hell of a lot.