I have worked in a neonatal ICU for several years. We have a group of nurses volunteered ourselves in the home care service. And we provide home care to babies whom discharged from our unit, which require special care like tube-feeding, gastrostomy feeding and home with oxygen etc. As it is a volunteer service, we do not collect any money from the parents. I am just curious to know whether any of you are doing this as part of your unit or on permanant basis? And how do you assess the home nursing care and any documentation required after each home visit? Are there any hospitals' neonatal units providing the home care service like us too? I am really keen in learning more about this area.
Our unit does provide home care visits, but it is definitely not a volunteer thing. We have a half dozen or so staff nurses that work part time in the unit and part time in home health. If a baby goes home with special needs (feeding tube, oxygen, TPN, etc.) then we send our home health nurses out for visits. They visit the day after the baby is discharged, then 2-3 times a week until things settle down, and after that every 1-2 weeks just to do a check-up. They contact the baby's pediatrician if any changes need to be made with the baby's plan of care. If a baby goes home with a trach (with or without a vent) or on dialysis, then the family gets 8-24 hours of private duty nursing instead, and are not seen by our home care team. Both the NICU home care visits and private duty nursing are covered by insurance or Medicaid.
I can't imagine doing it for no pay - it is a hard job, running around visiting all these babies and working with their families! There are a few nurses that babysit our graduates for free, but I would never do that personally - too much liability!
Last edit by Gompers on Feb 20, '06