How much information of a patient does your agency give you before you accept a case?

  1. regarding a private duty's case....,
    my agency tells me a patient's address and shift & days of a week i work and asks if i can do the case. they don't give me any other information such as age of the patient, what kind of diagnosis the patient has, and what kind of treatments a nurse is likely to give, etc. unless a nurse decide them if she/he accept a case. how is your agency? is your agency the same as mine?
    p.s. i have not accepted any patient from this agency yet because the patients that they have introduced me have had addresses too far from my home, unfortunately....
  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   tothepointeLVN
    When I was doing private duty most of the time I would just get simple details such as trach or vent or G Tube. Mainly because the schedulers are not medically trained so they really don't know. Sometimes they'd give me info about how the moms personality was though which was very useful. If I was in the office I could see the 485 but I almost never was. It's at the house anyways. If there's something about the case you don't like you can decline.
  4. by   caliotter3
    When taking on a private duty case, you find out the specifics when you interview with the client. When working through an agency, it varies. As a minimum, a copy of the 485 is provided. If a new case, might not be told much more than "trach, vent, G-tube" since these are the "big" parameters that they want you to be able to handle. If the case has been around awhile, then you might be told things to watch out for, "do and don't", so that you don't get bounced from the case fast. It also depends on who is giving you the initial info, the staffing coordinator, or the clinical supervisor, or both.
  5. by   dirtyhippiegirl
    When I did agency work, I was given general parameters - age, sex, location, and technicalities like gtube/vent/trach. Depending on who was scheduling, you might or might not get the "real story" about the patient. (Difficult pt/family/definitely don't forget to lock your car. OMG - I went to a particular patient twice before someone bothered to tell me that they had bedbugs.) The 485 was always emailed to us immediately through a secure connection. It was generally accepted that you could later turn down a case based on the 485 as long as you did it in a timely manner.

    (But if your agency worked like mine with outdated 485s, what you read is definitely not always what you got.)
  6. by   Been there,done that
    How are you supposed to know if you can do the case?
    Do the y offer any reimbursement for your time ,going to the client and evaluating their needs?If not, there are a million home care agencies that will not only match you accordingly, but also pay you to evaluate the situation.
  7. by   ventmommy
    The agency we used had a copy of our house rules, a list of my son's diagnoses, medications, equipment and therapies that was provided to the nurse prior to his/her first visit to the house. In my son's room was a complete binder that I made detailing medications, equipment use/cleaning/settings/parameters, and diagnoses with signs & symptoms and causes (ex. cortical blindness secondary to TBI). I also had emergency procedures posted and nurses had to know them forwards and backwards before I would step out of his room while they were there. He also had very, very different vital signs and they had to know those parameters by heart as well.
  8. by   frankie,RN
    i usually get a full report prior to going to the home. but they usually dont tell you about bedbugs, roaches, etc.
  9. by   sailornurse
    They should give you as much info as you need to decide. All medical dx including past medical hx listed and what skilled nursing they require. Home vent??? CPAP/bipap? Any other info such as wounds/dressings, any tubes: foley, peg etc. When I did home health, I had a fax in my home for them to send me the facesheet/referral for me to evaluate,saved me time driving in. Are you doing electronic records? Then you should be able to access medical record to decide if you want to accept the case. We all have different skill sets and you should not be expected to be able to take care of every patient from peds to grannies if you are not comfortable. Tell them what info you need to make a decision, don't say yes/no right away until they send you the info you need.
  10. by   SDALPN
    Thats what the orientation is for. If you work in a hospital all you get is report and then you are on your own. If you are uncomfortable with the typical private duty cases then it might not be the right setting for you. I try to get as much information as I can get and then I'm on my own from there. Sometimes the agency won't tell you all the details about the family because they don't want to scare nurses away or think its a personality issue with the nurses and family. I'm starting to realize that it doesn't have to be a personality issue. If the family gets a new nurse every 3 months, its the family and not the nurses. Knowing the diagnosis before going to the case is important in case its something you need to research before going. I have seen parents that want to drill you on a diagnosis before working with their child. Age is important because some nurses will work with older kids but are afraid of infants. Your agency should be able to provide that information. As for what treatments you might give, you should know how to do the usual treatments. If its some treatment that is very uncommon you can learn it in orientation. If the agency is only introducing you to cases that are too far, its probably because its too far for the other nurses too and they are hoping you might say yes. Also you should tell the agency how far you are willing to travel. Most agencies ask this. But if you are new you will probably have to accept those types of assignments until something closer comes in or opens up. Even then you won't be the only nurse trying for the closer cases. But if you can prove yourself you will have more of a chance of being the first called for the next opening closer to you. Good luck.
  11. by   tothepointeLVN
    Quote from Been there,done that
    How are you supposed to know if you can do the case?
    Do the y offer any reimbursement for your time ,going to the client and evaluating their needs?If not, there are a million home care agencies that will not only match you accordingly, but also pay you to evaluate the situation.
    A million home care agencies? Really? Not lately it seems.

    I would always set it up so I would go meet and greet and then work a full shift then call into the office to say yah or nah. But that's what I was comfortable with. I never came across a case that was scary/risky nursing wise. Otherwise the agency would not pay you. They would not pay you for anything they couldn't bill for. Fair? No but my area is super oversaturated with LVN's
  12. by   JustBeachyNurse
    I get at least town, age, main diagnosis, and major treatments/interventions (g tube, gj tube, critical respiratory, trach/vent, seizure precautions, etc.) depending on who is calling. If the basics are within my comfort & travel zone I will be sent the 485 before meeting with the family/patient (if a new case to agency, post RN SOC visit) or orienting with a nurse already on the case. (I do strictly pediatrics. Some of my coworkers only do older chidlren/teens/young adults, some are neonatal to age 2/3, some are more diverse depending on skill set, background, experience, and cases already oriented to with this agency)

    We do not use electronic medical records for charting, so to see the 485 we need to accept email (not all the nurses will take emails from the office believe it or not) or go to the office to view the document before orienting on the case.

    We are paid a "training" rate that is more than minimum wage but much less than our skilled working rate for orientaiton/meeting the family. The office will verify with the family that we were there and how long (apparently some staff decided to try and embellish hours) since no charting is done (charts serve as our time sheets).
  13. by   nursel56
    Both agencies I work/worked for gave me a copy of the 485 with identifying information crossed out.
  14. by   Blackcat99
    At my agency, I was given a 15 minute class on ventilators and then was told that I could now do ventilator cases. I received a phone call from the recruiter telling me that they had a ventilator case available . I told them No thanks and that I did not feel comfortable with doing a ventilator case. I was told by the recruiter and I quote: "Don't worry about it. Besides this is a private pay patient and we can pay you much more money for you to do this case."

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