New home health nurse. Advice/tips needed.

  1. I will be starting a new position as a home health nurse at the beginning of Nov. I have almost 4 years of hospital experience in med surg and telemetry and also some prn work at a prison. Any advice or tips you all can provide for this new journey is much needed!

    Thanks!!
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  2. 21 Comments

  3. by   RN4life08
    Be ready for alot of paperwork but don't get discourage it gets easier! I was reading your post and it totally reminded me of my situation. Just started hh in July came from hospital setting have about 4.5 yrs experience. HH is such a different world... much easier then hospital from clinical skills standpoint. Love the flexibility that comes with it! Some days I miss the hospital because when you done with your shift your done... this is definitely not the case with home health. Key is to stay as organized as possible and keep up with paperwork!!! Good luck
  4. by   sirdearis88
    Thanks! I'll keep this in mind.
  5. by   mluvsgnc
    Not sure if you'll be with adult or peds, but with peds you not only get the patient, you get the family! That is a consideration. Also, you will probably find that the clinical/skills aspect gets repetitive, and you may not feel challenged after a while. And yes, there is a lot of paperwork. Most HH does paper charting (although there are exceptions), so be prepared to write all your narrative notes. It will be a very different environment from a med surg unit at a hospital, but I think a lot less stressful, so embrace the positives and good luck!
  6. by   KittyLovinRN
    Quote from mluvsgnc
    Not sure if you'll be with adult or peds, but with peds you not only get the patient, you get the family! That is a consideration.
    You get the families with adults too.....

    Sent from my iPhone using allnurses.com
  7. by   prettymica
    I left HH two months ago. I like the ability to plan my own schedule most days. I did not like the amount of paper work and idle time sitting around in my car waiting on set times to see patients. I also did not like that patients aren't guaranteed to be home so that means I wont get paid if I didn't see that patient. I worked weekend baylor so I was still required to do a 12 hr shifts. Even if I finished early, the company want me to hang around just in case they needed me and I was not getting paid( I was paid per person). I was seeing up to 16 patients a day. I miss the money but I don't miss the travel up to and over 600 miles in 3 days and trying to stay either cool or warm in my car will waiting on a specific times to visit a patient. I was so sick of bringing paperwork home I would try my best to chart in the car on my computer.
  8. by   KittyLovinRN
    Wow I feel very fortunate with my company. We do five 8 hour days w some weekends but I'm never in the field the full 8 hours, I'm paid salary up to my 6 patient/productivity points and any extra is paid at a different per visit rate.

    Unfortunately I do bring more paperwork home than I'd like but definitely not 12 visits worth, I don't blame you for leaving.

    Sent from my iPhone using allnurses.com
  9. by   rnrg
    My home health experience has always been hourly pay for shift work. Shifts typically are 4, 8, 12, 16 hour. Its very much repetitive. And mist times not challenging as far as clinically. I'm a pediatric trach/vent RN. You are always on call. The hardest part for me is the highly unfavorable working environments. (Drug violence ridden areas. Homes with bug infestation, filthy homes, inept caregivers, child abuse, unpredictable environment) I also do not enjoy the fact that my paychecks are not consistent BC if my pts get admitted to the hospital, my shifts are canceled. Remember that home care is not rigid like facility care. I wish you luck!
  10. by   mluvsgnc
    It seems there are different types of HH. In my situation, I did a meet and greet with the family and patient- neither of us was committed for any reason at that point. I personally wouldn't work in a "drug violence ridden area," a bug infested place, somewhere where I suspected child abuse, etc.) Once both parties were ok with one another and felt it was a good fit, we orient with another nurse for 2-3 shifts (8-12 hours) and then go out on our own. I only have one pediatric client, and he is mostly stable (although he is trach/GT/deaf/blind/CPAP/ etc. dependent), so stable but with a lot going on.

    To the OP: are you going to be working with an agency that sends you out to multiple places, or just with 1-2 clients?
  11. by   SDALPN
    Home health is visits. PDN is shifts. Hope that helps. So depends on which one you are doing how they will test. There are more PDN nurses in the PDN forum. If its PDN, you need lots of experience before working in that environment.
  12. by   sirdearis88
    Thanks everyone! I start next monday . I will be working with the adult population.
  13. by   Holisticlifern
    I really enjoyed reading this thread. I will also be starting a new home health position soon. Ive working in the PACU all of my career (5 years) I will be doing home care per diem and hopefully full time in the future
  14. by   Holisticlifern
    Good Luck! Please continue to share, I will be starting home health in the next few weeks too

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