That's funny I have been wondering the same thing. I'm a new RN (less than 2 years experience) and all I've done is home health and hospice. I get a lot of crap from older nurses for not doing any hospital / acute care (which seems to be the staple of getting hired anywhere else). So I do tend to go back and forth in my mind if I'm doing the right thing. I'm a full time salaried RN for a dual hospice/home health.
Pro's I've had:
-I honestly like the freedom of scheduling your own day and the ability to give really good care one pt at a time.
-I'm expected to see 4-5 pts per day, or less if it's very far. Pretty much anything I can cram in my 8 hour salary time. Which is reasonable.
-I get a musical soundtrack between patient visits (radio or pandora).
-You can youtube procedures before you go into a patient home.
-Easy to run a quick errand between visits which is nice. Especially my Starbucks runs.
-It's interesting and sometimes fun going into different peoples homes (in my opinion). I'm in LA so I can be in Beverly Hills mansions, Beach houses or straight up in the ghetto (lol). It varies day to day.
-I'm with a stable home health agency that's been in the game for at least a decade and always has >150 pt census at any given time with solid contacts. (Ideally try to find a dependable agency based on years of operation, the average length of stay of the staff and their happiness.
-I get salary, benefits and mileage reimbursement. Which can add up $$
Con's I've had:
-I'm in LA/OC area so I do sit in some of the worse traffic you'll ever experience.
-I'm on my ass A LOT. So I walk 30-45 mins at least 5 days/wk to prevent DVT. I'm dead serious, I'm afraid of getting DVT or getting jello legs.
-I feel pretty much trapped with my honda civic hybrid. Fuel efficiency is a must to survive in this field. I do see some of my other RN school friends who are in ER driving BMW's and Lexus's which is nice (not a necessity though!)
-If you do on call, it's extremely easy to get burnt out. Some agencies force you to do rotating on call if you want the full time position with benefits.
-I have to furnish my own assessment supplies: BP Cuff, pulse ox, stethoscope, thermometer and other things that comply with bag technique. I keep a surplus of spare supplies, admit packets. I made my own office with drawers & all in the trunk of my car. (That may vary with different agencies.)
-CHARTING IS THE DEVIL. Oasis-C is a 22 page ***** that almost all the time, runs me wayyy after hours on my own time off. Gets pretty overwhelming.
I guess it really depends on you and what will make you happy in the long run. I like what I've been doing so far.