I’m Just a “Simple User”

I am typing this on a new piece of hardware, an HP Touch Pad.  This little thing is a wonder among wonders.  The only disappointment so far is how many websites do not have an app sitting out there waiting for those of us on this pad.

What is hard to conceive that a lot of us are not Apple Happy? Nor are we Microsoft aficionados. We are the original Palm fans.  And we want more.  I did have to struggle to get my tech support extended, but Palm came through!  The Palm group still within HP are wizards in their field.  Of course I am not a techkie (sp?).  I mean, what do I know of bits & bytes, code, the cloud, social networking?  I only want a stable OS.

The Palm group has delivered a stable OS for YEARS, from the time of Sidekick.  Geez, give me a programmer to give it to me again.  Sync was pure wizardry. It worked so well on my LifeDrive  and Palm Centro.  I, currently, have a Palm Pre2 and unable to give myself a TWO HOUR reminder on my calendar, let alone a TWO DAY one.  What is with that?  I either miss my appointment or I am double booking.  How much time do you think this is going to work for my hairdresser or manicurist?

Now there is “The Cloud” concept being pushed.  Hey, these computer companies have to boost sales somehow.  Brilliant marketing going on here to figure out how to charge us a monthly fee for our own information storage.  I use to be able to keep my own information on my PC and sync what I wanted to sync.  I was also able to pick and choose what I wanted to back up.  Now, when I backup, EVERYTHING goes to a HP Server somewhere.  Bangladesh, perhaps?  Or the African Gold Coast?  Who knows and who is willing to tell me?

I do not want my information on some cloud concept.  There is no true security on “the cloud.”  Ask your neighbor who is in the security field, they will tell you.  Or look up in the sky, even rain drops come down.

Today, I feel like Jimmy Buffet asking, “Where are my Junior Mints.” Except I am saying give me my own computer tools back.  I am only Sunshine Laughing, the “Simple User.”


Try Again

December 7, 2010 :  While waiting for the VA Palo Alto to return my call I made a call to the local hospital in Gilroy, CA. After more than two days and numerous calls I finally reach the Doctor-In-Charge. I inform him I am the Power of Attorney for Dad’s Health Care (POA).  I asked Dr. to call the VA Palo Alto to transfer Dad.  This Dr. says, “The VA won’t take him.”  I am like, “What?!”  I am told again, “The VA won’t take him.”

I call VAPAHCS on December 8 with no success catching the Acute to Acute Transfer Liason.  Same day, I call for the first time to the Patient Advocate Office, the Social Service Department, and attempt to leave my Dad’s primary care Doctor a voice mail.  Meanwhile Gilroy is telling me Dad has to be moved, Medicare will no longer cover him, and make suggestions of skilled nursing facilities (snf).  I decide on a well established facility in Los Gatos, CA and is part of the Good Samaritan Hospital.  I was told this was an inpatient sub-acute stroke rehab on hospital grounds. 

Transfer would proceed on December 9, 2010.  I call my referral from VA Social Services and confirm Dad will have access to his VA doctors while I continue to work on getting him transferred.  I am told at this time, it does not matter where he goes he will be able to see his doctor. 

Sidebar – Major learning curve error here to impart on other unsuspecting Veterans…..yes, you have access but you will have to make arrangements to get to the VA Doctor.  VA Doctors do not visit their patients at any off-site facilities.   Even though I was speaking with a Social Worker. in the VA System, my experience in December and through today, NO full answer or explanation is given to ANY question.  I had to learn and learn quickly to be specific on my informational requests.

When his primary care doctor’s nurse had not returned my call by December 10, 2010.  I placed another call to Patient Advocacy Manager, Margaret Lawrence.  Leaving a message with her co-worker, I had to speak with my dad’s primary and I had to speak to her.  The Transfer Department is not returning my call.

To be continued….


2010 & 2011 have and are my years of continued education.  I have not figured out how to register my Life CE credits.   Blogging seems to be the outlet to at least document my classes.  Hang in with me and watch my blog page evolve as I tweak it and learn.  So far, blog education has been a minute by minute class.  😀

From time to time I will add a Sidebar perspective.  The Sidebar’s will be a sharing of how I have the ability to…. Laugh at the Sun.

I welcome all who arrive here.

Palo Alto VA – In the beginning

I’m going to start on the VA class, beginning, December 5, 2010. This is the day my Dad, Korean War Veteran (he still calls it the Korean Conflict) had his stroke. My first call to VAPAHCS was December 7, 2010 when I asked for the Transfer Department.

Sidebar – The main line at VAPAHCS is as follows: “Welcome to the Palo Alto VA. Where we put the Vet first.” Considering the times I have called over the last 90 days, this phone voice greeting is so so funny! It also is the most hypocritical statement anyone could possibly hear on a daily basis.

As for my informal education of the Veterans Administration, started close to 90 days ago, it has now reached formal education.   I welcome all who take the time to read what I write about my major learning curve.   The energy needed to gather information and knowledge in communicating with the VA Palo Alto Health Care System (VAPAHCS for short), headed by Director Lisa Freeman, could be considered Herculean.  I have nothing but compassion and understanding for families of other Vets who run out of energy and/or patience when dealing with the Veterans Administration.