Dear Nurse Beth,
I a 62 years old and have been RN for 18 years. Am interested in doing private duty caregiving/companionship/sitting. No heavy duty nursing. How do I get started? Agencies are paying crap!
Dear Wants Private Duty,
Have you considered Home Health? You would be in a home setting, although you would have a caseload and not just one patient.
Another option is private pay, although it may not be easy to find clients who are willing
to pay out of pocket. In certain areas of the country, well-to-do elderly and/or incapacitated people do pay well for private duty care when they find someone they trust. Often the caregiver will be non-licensed, however. Doctors in these communities will make referrals on behalf of caregivers they know, or who perhaps have worked in in their office.
If you are looking for a skilled position where you perform RN functions, you need to work
under a doctor or other provider, which takes you back to Home Health. Insurance will not pay you directly.
Full-time home health will pay as much as a hospital. You will, however, have a lot of stress with schedulers chasing you all day and pressurising you to see more and more patients. Then keep 1.5 to 2 hours nightly for paper work per admission. Part-time home health is manageable, but a 1 hour visit, plus 2 hours of paper work, plus 1.5 hours of travel will ensure you make about $20 hour. You will pay for gas and car maintenance out of pocket.
Try and find a staffing agency that hires private duty. This would not be permanent work though, and few and far between. There is a lot of pediatric private duty available. It, however, pays about $20 hrly and those kids are total care. The biggest challenge are families. You can make this work out long-term if you can find a family you like and vice versa. Be sure to ask for smaller children as it involves a lot of lifting and transfer.
Last edit by feelix on May 16