I've been a floor nurse for a couple years now and totally burnt out from bedside. I'm looking into hospice. I applied to an Admission RN position at a hospice company and was just wondering what exactly are the duties and expectations? The company's website only has a generic description and doesn't provide much insight to it.
I would very much appreciate any info. Bedside nursing continues to cause me too much anxiety...I feel like I've aged 20 years from the running around and 12 hour shifts... I only realize now that maybe bedside just isn't for me...
Jan 27, '13
Been Hospice nurse for over 10 years. I would be surprised if you were hired as an admission nurse. Nothing against you. Its just you have to have a very good understanding of how hospice works. Plus the admission nurse is under stress a lot. you may have 2 or3 admits a day. Admits are from 2 to 4 hours long. I would start out as a field nurse. But if your getting burnout on at the bedside care wait to you do the dying bedside care. You get very attached to the patients and the family are very demanding. I some time call the care. ICU at home care.
Jan 27, '13
I appreciate your honesty. I don't want to go into something if it may not be a good fit for me.
I heard about this hospice company through a friend. She is a case manager but does field work (if that makes sense). She loves the job and loves working for this company. They didn't have any CM positions open and admissions RN was the only one available.
Anyway, I am still looking for my niche; to be in something I can be happy..just like my friend. I just don't want to make any rash decisions
Jan 27, '13
Some people prefer admissions. You are working more on the business development side of things as opposed to strictly direct patient care. You are still going out and meeting with families but it is almost as though you are meeting with them, reassuring them, making sure they have what they need and then sending them off to their team to work with them on a regular basis. Also, the hours are usually from 9-5 or so. Some people really like it. And also I don't see why you couldn't be an admissions nurse with your qualifications as long as they meet the specifications of the job description. I say go for it.
Jan 27, '13
We encourage new applicants to shadow for a day so you get an idea of what to expect. Ask the hospice if they allow this. Good Luck! Admissions seems to run very different at each hospice.
Jan 27, '13
I've only been in hospice for about 1 1/2 years, but absolutely love it. I started out in case mgmt and now just do admissions, which I actually like a lot more than I thought I would when my manager first asked me to take the job. I work for a fairly small agency, so I do the prequalification assessment to make sure they qualify, do admission mtg with family and explain all about hospice and the services we provide, do initial order of supplies and meds, then do all the paperwork and turn it over to an rn cm. the hard part of the job is that it can be very crazy at times when last minute urgent admissions come up, so it makes it very hard to plan your day. but as long as you are flexible and can roll with changes, it's a great job. best of luck to you. hospice is very different than hospital nursing, but (at least in my opinion) is so much more rewarding.
Jan 28, '13
Having been an admission nurse for 2 years for hospice, I would recommend that you start out in hospice doing primary or on-call nursing if the field before starting with the admissions team. There is so much knowledge from experience that you need...knowledge about hospice in general and how it works with your agency.
Going into an admission visit, it is vital that you can teach/reassure patients and familes what hospice actually is, what your agency can offer them, how the different teams will be involved in care, etc. It seems vital to know the philosophy and standards very well to handle all the questions throwns at you, and experience is the best way imo. You are normally by yourself on those visits, and although you can normally call supervisors with questions, it would be helpful if you can speak to concerns from experience and from a hospice/agency perspective.
You will need to be comfortable evaluating patients to see if they are appropriate for hospice by meeting eligibility criteria; knowing what kinds of aggressive treatments are acceptable to continue while with hospice (i.e. blood transfusions, radiation, etc.); understanding what the patient's and families goals of care are...and if those goals are in line with hospice philosophy; addressing symptoms present during your visit, and providing emotional support and reassurance to patients and families about what is going to happen next, and what hospice will do in a given emergency situation, etc.
The list goes on. Don't let this deter you from hospice though. All these things can be learned and integrated. I am just recommending you work on the inside for a while and it will help prepare you to better deal with whatever comes your way at each visit.
Jan 29, '13
An RN with bedside experience could be trained to be a hospice admission nurse.
It is a very different role from CM...you have no ongoing relationship with the patients...you admit them and move on to the next.
On that level, some nurses do not find the admissions job very rewarding because of the lack of relationships.
Mar 30, '15
Hi there! I was just wondering if you ended up going for the admissions job? I'm also extremely burnt out from bedside nursing! I've just spent the past year travel nursing and am now looking for a new job. I do have 5 years of oncology experience but had minimal experience with end-of-life/hospice cases. I remember dealing with the admissions nurse when I worked inpatient and always thought it seemed like such an interesting job.
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