Insight into home health

  1. Hello everyone, I have been an RN for 15 years in a hospital setting in various specialties. I am getting burnt out with the hospital and am thinking about going into home health. I would like some feed back from those of you that are already working in HH. Pros and Cons. I don't mind driving in fact I drive 80 miles round trip now, I am tired of not having time with my patients and thought with this field I could spend time and give good nursing care. Also any questions I should ask when applying for a position, in the event I go this route.:spin:

    Thanks,
    Char
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   EricJRN
    Char,

    I moved your post to the Home Health Forum for more responses. Good luck!
  4. by   Cattitude
    Quote from RN0202
    Hello everyone, I have been an RN for 15 years in a hospital setting in various specialties. I am getting burnt out with the hospital and am thinking about going into home health. I would like some feed back from those of you that are already working in HH. Pros and Cons. I don't mind driving in fact I drive 80 miles round trip now, I am tired of not having time with my patients and thought with this field I could spend time and give good nursing care. Also any questions I should ask when applying for a position, in the event I go this route.:spin:

    Thanks,
    Char
    Hi
    Try reading some of the older threads, you should find a lot of useful info. Good luck!!!

    Beez
  5. by   nurseangel47
    Hi, I use to be a home health nurse and fairly recently so feel that I can answer a bit of your questions. The key is organization. If you're a highly organized nurse you'll be fine. The average daily driving range if 100 to 200 miles, give or take 25. Average total daily cases you're expected to see is from six to seven pts per day. The documentation is what gets to you. It takes at least 2 hours to complete or at least close to completion a new admission. It takes about an hour or so to do a visit's worth of paperwork.
    So...I ended up with a very long day doing paperwork at home for free for the company...and I've tried several different home health places to be sure it wasn't "me"...I just couldn't put in the 12 hour days for five days in a row and not be compensated. The average mileage pay is around 35 cents per mile unless it's gone up...most places will only give what the government requires them to give which is minimal because not only does it have to pay for gas, it wears on your vehicle in general maintenance plus the tread on those tires doesn't go anywhere but thinner while driving so much! Peeps don't take those factors into consideration...they just say, mileage, oh boy, extra money! No, it's not "extra" money...it's not nearly enough to compensate for the auto defects you accrue in abusing the vehicle on the road! LOL Anyway, it would be a good thing for you if you could take a per diem nurse case load at a home health agency. That way, you can set what days/hours of the day you'd want to work, and it'd be a different pay per case than the hourly rate the other nurses make there who work fulltime with full case loads. I hope that this helps a bit. Lots of chf, diabetes, PICC lines for anti. tx., complex wound care, that sort of thing.
    I think it'd be a huge break for you from the hospital setting, too. So...good luck.
  6. by   homehealth43130
    You either love or hate home care - I have been working in home care in some capacity or other for 28 years. You need to be confident of yourself and your skills, organized and able to work independently. Also realize that home care is going through a major focus change. If you don't like change, then home care may not be the right place for you at this time. Good luck in your choices.
  7. by   pagandeva2000
    It appears that home health nursing for the LPN and RN are a bit different. I have notes to write, but don't travel from place to place, and the paperwork that is mentioned here is not my headache for the day. I found home health nursing to be better because I have all day to tend to one patient, and can address their holistic needs. I have only been doing this for a short period of time and only one day a week (have a full time job at a hospital, and just became an LPN recently)...so, I have to interact more here to see the benefits and disadvantages.
  8. by   nurworld
    Home Care is a good thing for many nurses, lvn's, and cna's. I must agree on several comments; first it is up to you as an individual to manage your time wisely and be organized. Secondly, it's a good feeling to be able to manage your patient care in accordance to your love in the field of nursing. I, personnally hated the bureaucracy in a hospital and really enjoy having more one on one with my patients. I've only been a D.O.N. for a home health agency for a month, and already I look forward to putting in place the right team for this agency. If one schedules accordingly and hires enough staff you can cover different areas with LVN's and RN's together...
    Las Cruces NM--- Nurworld
  9. by   caliotter3
    I found the best job I ever had in home hlth after LTC experience. While I have found always at least a little anxiety over being there by myself, the ability to focus all of my energy on one patient at a time was a tremendous boost for me professionally. The paperwork is manageable and so is your routine as long as you stay in charge of yourself. What can be difficult is intermittent/episodic visits versus continuous care (4 to 8/12 hr) shifts. I prefer continuous care and won't do intermittent visits if I can get the right position. However, one of the biggest pitfalls I found was that my car died a horrible, prolonged death from me doing home hlth. I was only paid mileage on one position, and it did not even pay for the gas. Home hlth pay is low also, unless perhaps you are in a nurse supervisor position or the Director of Clinical Services. With your 15 yrs hosp experience, you would be hired quickly by any agency. You pretty much can make your experience what you want provided you get the right agency/right patient(s). Hope you try it and get a good situation for yourself. Good luck.
  10. by   nurworld
    My experience so far with the agency I am helping start off has been wondeful. I expect that my input will help make it a success, and that I can bring aboard quality, dedicated, and well organized RN's, LVN's, etc..
    If you know anyone in southern NM that would be good to talk too, let me know.

    Nurworld
  11. by   NRSKarenRN
    Welcome! Read the stickies at the top of the page to give you general outline of this field and give you heard start before you plunge in.
  12. by   nurworld
    Hello Char,

    I fully understand your frustration on Hospital bureaucracy. I've recently went into home health and so far it's been a good experience. If you are a dedicated, organized person, you'll do fine. There is alot of paperwork, but nothing one can't handle. I am looking for LVN's and a couple of RN's, you know anyone in Southern New Mexico?
  13. by   Cattitude
    hi all.
    i just wanted to perhaps clear up a few things for people reading this that may are thinking about home health. even i was getting confused reading some threads as it seems some of us have very different roles/jobs and different experiences as far as pay, mileage also.

    1. in home care there is shift work where you are caring for 1 pt. in home for 8-12 hrs. there is also what i do, visiting nurse and thats going from pt. to pt. depending on where you live the amt. of pt's you see in a day varies. that job can also be different depending on where you live and what type of program your patients are on. most pt's are on an acute type program and require things like dsg. changes, lab draws, iv meds, foley changes, etc. i work for a chronic program and we see little of this although it does happen once in a while. our pt's stay on our program for years until they die or transfer to facility.

    2. in rural areas it seems that the mileage can run quite high over 100-150 per day? i put about 10-30 miles on my car per day. i live right outside a major city

    3. pay. i have read that people say its low in home health. mayve true in some areas. in ny they actually pay higher in home health than they do in the hospital. i work for a hospital based home health agency. i f right this minute i decided to transfer to a hosp. position, i would lose about 10-14,000 per year!
    :spin: anyway, most of this info i got from reading theses boards, from all of you, please correct me if i am wrong.

    i just thought this might help anyone looking to change.:smiletea2:


    beez
  14. by   pagandeva2000
    i agree with you, that in new york, lpns get paid better in home care than in hospitals. i have a private case on saturdays that pays $250 for 10 hours, and if i had taken both days of the weekend, it would only be $100 less than what i bring home from the hospital in two weeks. in the hospital that i work for, i do have many deductions such as ira, credit union, union dues and insurance, however, i am less stressed and can put more time into my one client and really feel that i contributed to their holistic care.

    Quote from casbeezgirlrn
    hi all.
    i just wanted to perhaps clear up a few things for people reading this that may are thinking about home health. even i was getting confused reading some threads as it seems some of us have very different roles/jobs and different experiences as far as pay, mileage also.

    1. in home care there is shift work where you are caring for 1 pt. in home for 8-12 hrs. there is also what i do, visiting nurse and thats going from pt. to pt. depending on where you live the amt. of pt's you see in a day varies. that job can also be different depending on where you live and what type of program your patients are on. most pt's are on an acute type program and require things like dsg. changes, lab draws, iv meds, foley changes, etc. i work for a chronic program and we see little of this although it does happen once in a while. our pt's stay on our program for years until they die or transfer to facility.

    2. in rural areas it seems that the mileage can run quite high over 100-150 per day? i put about 10-30 miles on my car per day. i live right outside a major city

    3. pay. i have read that people say its low in home health. mayve true in some areas. in ny they actually pay higher in home health than they do in the hospital. i work for a hospital based home health agency. i f right this minute i decided to transfer to a hosp. position, i would lose about 10-14,000 per year!
    :spin: anyway, most of this info i got from reading theses boards, from all of you, please correct me if i am wrong.

    i just thought this might help anyone looking to change.:smiletea2:


    beez

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