Quote from aimeee
Our triage nurses make the same "rate" as well, but we have had many different ways of compensating people over the years. Much depends on how busy they are and of course it can vary wildly from one day to the next. We currently pay for 15 or 16 hours of work for each 24 hour weekend day on call and more if they actually work more. You really need to factor in your compensation scheme.
As far as qualifications...hospice experience is a big big plus, as is some sort of triaging experience....but the biggest qualifications are an ability to listen compassionately, speak with authority yet in a way that soothes and calms, maintain composure under duress, and above all, great critical thinking skills.
Maybe I should clarify what I do. I work a very long shift friday night from 5pm until 8pm saturday. then I work sunday 8am-8pm then mon-thurs 5pm -8am. I do this schedule for one week then I am off for a week. And it continues to rotate this way indefinitely. I feel well compensated for this job because I make a regular RN salary competative for the area that I live in plus an enormous benefit package (30days pto/year, every kind of ins, 401k, stock options, and the list goes on...). Also because we have a full time call staff I rarely leave my house. I have been doing triage since last november and have only left my house 4 time to do a patient call myself. I work from a company laptop, cell phone, and fax machine. I go to the office to turn in paperwork and attend meetings. I absolutely love being able to work at home and make a full time nursing salary. If I agree to work any extra shifts, I get paid extra. If I agree to make visits on my time off, I make a per diem rate for each visit. Our company also pays milage at the government rate and adjusts the rate whenever the government does. I have talked to many hospice nurses in this area of central Texas that are not near as fortunate as I am.
As for skills. You are so very right. You have to be able to compationately listen and advise familys in duress. Sometimes they are crying, sometimes they have a complaint and most often they are greatful. You have to be able to quickly critically think, find a way to stay on track with the algorythms, talk patients / PCG through giving medications, quickly identify which LTCF residents are full code status, ect. You have to be really organized. Not only do we have pt's calling in, but we also provide the service of calling patients that arn't doing as well to check on them. We have scheduled visits, and on-call visits. We do EOB and Admits 24/7. I am also fortunate to have family support on call every shift as well.
I guess you can tell by this post that I can't say enough good things about my job. I absolutely love it. I am enjoying this summer so much. I work a week, and spend an entire week doing things with my kids. Its like having vacation time every other week.