What does an LPN do at a group home?

  1. Hello everyone
    I am an LPN student, I have 5 months till graduation. I am interested in working with children and adults with developmental disabilities, and I've seen a lot of group homes advertising for an LPN. What role would I have if I got a job at a group home? What specific duties are there? Just trying to decide what I want to do when I graduate...thanks!!
    •  
  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   enuf_already
    The group homes I've visited use LPNs for medication administration, treatments, and general health monitoring (including clients' health maintenance, injuries, MD visits, etc).

    Some duties may depend on the state where you are licensed as well as the type of group home. These can range anywhere from medically fragile children to adults who have day jobs but need some level of supervision.

    Working with the DD population can be both challenging and rewarding. Thanks for wanting to work with this very special group of people!
  4. by   Lmomma
    Quote from enuf_already
    The group homes I've visited use LPNs for medication administration, treatments, and general health monitoring (including clients' health maintenance, injuries, MD visits, etc).

    Some duties may depend on the state where you are licensed as well as the type of group home. These can range anywhere from medically fragile children to adults who have day jobs but need some level of supervision.

    Working with the DD population can be both challenging and rewarding. Thanks for wanting to work with this very special group of people!
    Thank you! I have worked with children with DD for several years, but am switching gears from education to medicine. Anyone else have experience with group homes?
  5. by   Simba&NalasMom
    Sorry I'm just now seeing this...you'll be graduating next month? Congrats!

    I'm an LPN in a group home for medically fragile MRDD adults. I absolutely LOVE what I do. For 8 years before I got this job, I worked a lot of long term care which left me frustrated and burned out because there were too many people to care for and not enough staff to do the caring.

    In the setting where I work, I do the basic nursing including medication administration and treatments (which includes trach care for two individuals and JT/GT maintenance, flushes, etc). I also have one individual with a catheter, colostomy, and multiple wound care needs.

    In addition to the nursing duties, I spend time assisting the DSPs (direct support professionals, aka caregivers) with their duties including transfers, hygiene, and laundry and other household chores. Because there are five individuals and 3 staff including myself, I also have time to see to the psych/social needs of our individuals, which can include emotional support, helping to pick out which movies they want to watch, and just spending quality time with them.

    When an individual is hospitalized, if I'm not working at the house and have time, I also visit the hospital to advocate and give the hospital nurses and doctors information on their medical histories and personalities. It really helps the hospital personnel manage the care when they have people present who know the individuals well, and it also, I think, helps the hospital folks to see them as individuals and not just warm bodies.

    It is pretty busy most days, but it's so rewarding that we have the time and resources to actually give the best possible care to people.
  6. by   Lmomma
    Quote from Simba&NalasMom
    Sorry I'm just now seeing this...you'll be graduating next month? Congrats!

    I'm an LPN in a group home for medically fragile MRDD adults. I absolutely LOVE what I do. For 8 years before I got this job, I worked a lot of long term care which left me frustrated and burned out because there were too many people to care for and not enough staff to do the caring.

    In the setting where I work, I do the basic nursing including medication administration and treatments (which includes trach care for two individuals and JT/GT maintenance, flushes, etc). I also have one individual with a catheter, colostomy, and multiple wound care needs.

    In addition to the nursing duties, I spend time assisting the DSPs (direct support professionals, aka caregivers) with their duties including transfers, hygiene, and laundry and other household chores. Because there are five individuals and 3 staff including myself, I also have time to see to the psych/social needs of our individuals, which can include emotional support, helping to pick out which movies they want to watch, and just spending quality time with them.

    When an individual is hospitalized, if I'm not working at the house and have time, I also visit the hospital to advocate and give the hospital nurses and doctors information on their medical histories and personalities. It really helps the hospital personnel manage the care when they have people present who know the individuals well, and it also, I think, helps the hospital folks to see them as individuals and not just warm bodies.

    It is pretty busy most days, but it's so rewarding that we have the time and resources to actually give the best possible care to people.
    Thank you! This is exactly what I want to do. Did you find your time in LTC helpful at all? I am concerned about being the only nurse in the building strait out of school. I think I should get a good 6 months experience in a facility before jumping into a group home position. Thoughts??
  7. by   Simba&NalasMom
    LTC experience is always helpful; it's where a lot of us develop our strong assessment skills and time management. Getting 6 months to a year experience in LTC may also benefit you in the event you wind up changing your mind about wanting to work in group homes.

    As far as jumping into a group home, it really depends on the acuity level as well as your level of support. The house where I work recently hired a new grad RN and I was told that after a few days of training, she was not comfortable with the trachs, so she left the position. However, I've worked in other group homes as an agency nurse where the individuals are much more stable and the highest level of acuity is g-tubes and I've wound up doing most of the cooking and wondering why I even needed to be there.

    When looking at a group home as a new grad, I'd ask the following questions: Is there a strong support system present for you, e.g. is there a seasoned and approachable nurse whom you can easily contact with questions? How comprehensive is the training/orientation? I would be leery of signing on anywhere that only wants to give you a few days and then throw you out there. What is the level of acuity/how stable are the individuals? How supportive are the caregivers? I've been in houses where the caregivers are very savvy, helpful, know the individuals inside/out and have been a great resource for me as a nurse; I've also been in places where they can be bossy, lazy, and sit around doing nothing while the nurse runs her tail off. Of course, in nursing homes the CNAs can also make or break you! LOL...
  8. by   dianajh73
    LVNs in our ICF-N homes function as DSPs with extra duties. As someone else pointed out, your co-workers can make or break you. While the administrators usually try and schedule 2 DSPs for the shifts with LVNs, if there are call offs or there is short staff, they are rarely replaced, which means you spend a fair amount of time on the floor doing direct care and housework.

    In CA our ICF-N homes only require LVNs 8hrs/day by the way, not 24hrs. One of the homes only has an LVN 5 days a wk because they can't find a part time person to take the other 2 days. Typically our part-time LVNs work on weekends, which are the worst days to keep DSPs, so they are frequently covering for DSPs.

    LVN duties include: scheduling appointments, bi-weekly assessments, med passes, medication check-in and maintaining supplies, monthly reports of client condition and appointments, attending appointments when possible based on schedule and routine monitoring of health care plan.

Must Read Topics


close