Hello. I have an idea for a nurse who seeks more independence and autonomy, esp. one who is interested in the aging population. So many of my friends (in their 40's-50's) either relocated for career reasons, or have a parent who is now experiencing medical/physical problems their children are finding difficult to manage. How about a service in which a nurse is contracted to perform an assessment of both the parent, the family unit, and the current living situation. We have been doing assessments throughout our career. Then, the nurse could provide a "care plan" of sorts dealing with potential options in which to address with the entire family. If the parent is currently being treated for some disease, we could provide input in the expected progression and treatment options. We could make suggestions on how to create a safer home environment should the parent wish and is able to remain in their home. Screen and hire in-home assistants. Help navigate the complex world of insurance and treatment regimens. Act as a liason between the physician, patient and family. The possibilities are endless. Also, with the practice of elder care law expanding at a tremendous rate, think of how a nurse could provide our unique insight into the needs of an aging client and their caregivers......create a framework in which to work to provide for the much needed security of eventual long term care. I realize that Geriatric Care Managers provide much of these services, yet there is no requirement that they be nurses, or actually have any medical background. Has anyone else pondered such an opportunity for nurses who want to expand into their own businesses? Does anyone currently provide such services now? Please share your thoughts with this forum. Sincerely, Robb from Arkansas
May 7, '09
The jobdescription you gave is exactly what I am doing right now and I love it. I have been a nurse for over 30 years and lost my office/ surgery type job due to my boss retiring. I knew I could no longer handle the hospital or clinical type nursing , but I had a love for elderly care and have been taking care of my aging parents the past 6 years. I contacted an agency that does comprehensive adult and geriatric care management, they weren't even hiring, but gave me a part time job and it has been great. I am learning the different agencies and resources in the area and working with elder care lawyers, hospice, psychologists, neurologists and social workers. Two of us go out on the initial assessment, I do the medical part and the geriatric counselor does the mental and social evaluation. Sometimes it is a one time consult, other times we end up being the client advocate and help in coordinating care, especially if a family does not live in our area and need help with their parents. I have no added background in geriatric nursing , but have learned about the problems and concerns while going through it with my parents.
This is an excellent new area for nurses, and I know it will be growing in the future. Nurses are paid well for doing assessments and can set up their own schedule. It helps to study up on dementia, parkinsons, depression etc and the meds used in these dx. I got my contact by going through a senior resource catalog that I got at the hospital. I looked up websites and just sent an email to the one I liked and got an interview!
Hope this helps. Let me know what you think.
May 9, '09
Thank you so much. I had a instinctive feeling that there is an emerging market for this servce. Your information is most helpful, and I will begin to send letters to the elder care lawyers in the Little Rock area. Can you offer any more resources I could explore. For the past five years, I bave been a case manager in hospice practice, yet wish to start a business with an attorney friend of mine who would be excellent in the area of elder care. We both love geriatric medicine, and would like to be an advocate for this growing population. I was diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer at age 42 (seven years ago) which had moved to the bone when it was found. I love hospice work and would like to take my service further. Again, thank you for taking the time to respond to my post.....your kindness and thoughts are much appreciated. Robb
May 12, '09
My thoughts are with you Robb, it was hard to hear about your cancer, I hope things are going good for you.
I think getting involved with Eldercare lawyers is excellent. They also will be able to suggest any consultants in the area. We often share clients with lawyers and they reciprocate. you might also look into and study up on dementia, parkinsons, bipolar disorders , depression, and the resources in your area for these patients.
Last night I was at ER for 3 hours with one of my clients who was having a hypertensive/ anxiety attack while her daughter was away on a trip. You really get to know these people well and often end up counseling the family members more than the clients. Tomorrow I will take the client to her primary care physician for followup on her BP meds and then show her an assisted living facility on Thurs. We hope to get her into to one very soon.
Thsi gives you an idea of what this position entails. Hope this helps. I will give more suggestions when I am not so tired! Keep in touch.
Sep 2, '09
I so see the need for this service. The care managers at the hospital I work at are so bombarded with patients that they can't effectivley provide there services, thus leaving patients to fend for themselves. I've experienced this personally with a family member. Secondly, elderly patients whom receive care through clinics and whom have not yet been admitted to a hospital have not been assessed or given resources. I have been thinking about starting a business providing these service including the begining steps of how to care for the elderly i.e. body mechanics, pt care, respite services... Can you email me through this site to give more info? Thank you.
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