community vs. hospital?

Nurses General Nursing


Specializes in Geriatrics, retirement, home care..

Hi there, are there any nurses out there who have worked in home care and the hospital? I was wondering about the pros/cons of both. what about the differences in care/salary?any info would be greatly appreciated.

Specializes in Community Health, Med-Surg, Home Health.

I am an LPN that works primarily in a hospital clinic and worked home care on the weekends. I made more in a day as a home care nurse than I do as working in the hospital, but the hospital position is my primary job, where I have union dues, private insurance, savings, 401k and a few other deductions that bring the take home pay down, but are necessary.

Home care is great because I have one client I am focusing on. It is more autonomous for an LPN, more flexible and more relaxing. I can adhere more to the patient's needs and can care for them totally. The disadvantage is that since I am a relatively new nurse, I have no one to count on but myself if something emergent comes up (although I would always call 911 and the agency if in doubt). Also, family dynamics and the condition of the home can weigh on you. I was fortunate, the clients I had were living in clean conditions, so, I was not repulsed in being there. But, there are some families that think you are a maid, have weird requests and you can find yourself in the middle of silly family situations that are not in your control.

The hospital is great as a start because there should be others that support you (but not always-as you can see while reading the posts here in allnurses), have the equipment you need and I think that it is better, personally, to begin in a facility where you can call for and expect immediate assistance if your patients go south. Disadvantages are politics, nurses eating their young, too many patients, too short time to care for their every need (strange or necessary) and being overwhelmed.

I let go of the home health care case because I felt that the family sort of compromised me, and rather than go in with resentment, I decided to move on. I do plan to return, but once I get more bedside experience and a bit more confidence under my belt.

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