In my earlier reply, I forgot to say anything about the upside of home nursing. I love the independence, being able to advocate for the patient, having doctors say, "Okay, I trust your judgement, let's do what you suggest." (Wouldn't most hospital nurses love to hear those words!) I also love that the patient has more control, and can be treated in familiar surroundings. I think it's great that we're able to allow a patient to die at home, if that's what they want. I also enjoy constantly learning new things: new procedures, encountering new diseases and situations. We're like G.P.'s in that regard - we nurse them from the cradle to the grave. My first call of the day might be a 6 month old with asthma, my next an 86 year old dying of cancer. I've always loved variety, and this is one job where I'll rarely ever be bored.
The downside is the lousy pay, much less than hospital nurses in this area - $18-19 an hour, whereas hospital nurses start at about $22.00 an hour. I also get paid per visit only, and don't get any compensation for travel time (though I do get mileage.) I would like to know what company Nightstar works for --- would you mind telling me? Sounds like you've got a great deal there! The company I work for is non-profit, which is probably why we aren't paid as well as some of the others. The bright side of that is because we started out as a Christian organization, I'm not afraid to offer to pray with my patients, if I think they need the spiritual help.