Home health experiences so far..Register Today!
- by Asands Sep 2, '12When i worked at a hospital i never heard from patients how much better another nurse was or how much more knowledge nurse A had than me. In fact I got compliments that i really know how to get along with patients and that im competent. Since working in homehealth thoughnoticed the relationship between nurses and patients are much stronger than in a hospital. So much so that if you happen to take over a patient from a nurse theyre going to point out everything that you do wrong in their eyes and retell everything you do to their regular nurse. This has happened to me a few times. Im a call-in for nurses who are sick or on leave and i seem to be the butt of patients irritation. For example, i was helping an elderly who has been recieving home health for years lady take a shower (she was wheelchair bound due to a broken leg). While helping her dress again, i got her underwear and tried to help her in it. I didnt think about hte fact that she couldnt take her underwear off while standing up on one leg and she told me that and ask how long ive been working in homehealth because the other nurse who takes care of that knew that well. Well maybe it was true, but ive always worked at a surgery ward where we hardly had people who were in wheelchairs. Anyways, I realise I need to get a tougher skin but it really gets in my skin when im compared to other nurses whove had years of experience and ive just started. I notice that other patients start doing it to me as well and telling me about this or that nurse and i dont confirm or deny what they said.
Has anyone else had experiences in home health like this?
- Sep 2, '12 by bigtownRNI work full time in home care as a case manager, and I do most of my own visits. You are right that the nurses and clients develop a closer relationship, and the clients get into a pattern, a routine in how they like things done. I often have clients tell me that they don't like it when another nurse does a visit, either because of personality, not being as thorough, or not doing things the same way. I think being in their home may make a difference because it's more intimate and personal. But it's also the fact that they see the same nurse over and over, and get so used to that.
When I do visits for another nurse who is on vacation, I try to ask how the client likes things done before I start doing the cares.
Being that you are doing things like dressing patients, I am thinking you may be doing the type of home care that is one patient per shift, and not the multiple visits daily? I think that would be even harder because the patients are with you the whole shift. I think it's also harder dealing with those kinds of patients because if they need 24 hr nursing, they have little control of much in their lives and have to rely on others for so much. This translates into micromanaging their nurse, I think.
- Sep 2, '12 by nursel56I think what happened there is extremely common in home health, especially with long-term clients who have little turnover in their staffing. As bigtownRN mentioned, their patterns are usually unique, and so deeply ingrained in such cases they assume what works well for them is the correct way to do things everywhere, which gives rise to questions about how long one has been a nurse or how long one has been working in home health care.
I wouldn't take it personally at all. The familiar patterns they develop help them feel more secure and give them a measure of control. I think the best way to deal with it, is ask how they like to do things ahead of time, or when they become upset because "none of their other nurses do it that way", stop, and pleasantly tell them to tell you what steps to take next. Normally that defuses the situation.
I've noticed many clients tend to resent nurses who don't realize their home is not a hospital (in their viewpoint) where we display more doctrinaire expectations due to the workload. It isn't you at all.