Published Jul 16, 2009
I have an interview tomorrow at UNC for a Health Unit Coordinator position. I am currently taking my pre-req's so that I can get into the ABSN program and feel that this would be a good position to see a wide range of the in's and out's of nursing. Can anyone provide me with a job description or a 'day in the life' of a HUC? Thanks guys I really appreciate it.
Never been one, but here's what ours do:
Answer phone/call docs
Put in orders
Put labs on the chart
Order meal trays
Tear down charts
Order new forms and office supplies
Deal with families
Save the nurses butts
And lots of other things! I love our secretaries! Without them my job will be ten times more difficult!
Hmmm...well, as a HUC I would do most of the above mentioned as well as stock supplies, update census books, work with transportation for transferring and or discharging patients, stock blanket warmers, and more I'm sure, but just not coming to mind.
I think it's a great avenue for you to get into prior to beginning nursing school as well. You'll be much more familiar with a lot of things like medical terms, labs, etc. It bode very well for me before I began nursing school!! And not to mention, it could be your foot in the door too!
The other posters have done a good job listing the tasks. I just wanted to add that the best Unit Coordinators stay on top of everything that is going on in the unit. They know who's got what issues going on, who went where for a test, etc. They act as "Traffic Control" for the unit. You've really got to be a good multi-tasker who can reorganize priorities quickly when a pt starts going down the tubes. The nurses depend on you to help them do their job, and to some extent, also the doctors (where the UC puts the doctor's orders in the computer).
I did UC for a year, then cross-trained to the PCA role. I did UC/PCA throughout NS. My UC job ultimately led to my going to NS on the company dime in exchange for a two-year work commitment.
It can be overwhelming at times, and you will be a center of the whirlwind, so to speak. But, when you are good, you make that whirlwind manageable for your unit. It took me six months to get good at it, and I am a very fast learner.
I learned how to read drs handwriting, how the unit runs, and typical orders for many diagnoses as a UC. The one thing it doesn't give you much of is pt interaction. It will help with "book" knowledge, though.
HUC's are responsible for answering the phone, answering the door in locked units, ordering supplies by computer(the nurses and stock clerks will list what you need to order).
UNC has computer order entry, so you will be freed from trying to decipher bad handwritten doctors orders. HUC's get the doctors orders and put them on the chart and transcribe new medication orders into the patients medex.
A good HUC does get to know lots of people and a good HUC is a treasure.
The interview went well and I have a follow up interview coming up in a few days as well. The information helped. Also, I do know basic medical terminology but are the some specific unit terms that I should know. If you could point me in the right direction I would really appreciate it. Thanks again,
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