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HHA turned maid

Posted

Specializes in Psych.

I would like to start off by saying yes I am grateful that I am employed but finding a job is not that difficult for me. Another thing is that I am grateful my pay is good but I am not a housekeeper, that is not what I signed up for. When I became employed for the couple I worked for I thought they both need medical care. Miraculously one of them got better even though he is not as strong. So I've now been employed almost four months with them and I do care for the other (basically total care) but all the other employees are not CNA's or HHA's. They typically start off as housekeepers and as their employers age they help take care of them. I see things from a more medical prospective and have recommended some things and they are not to thrilled. They also do not understand that I a mandated reporter. There was a lot of neglect before the man became sick and nothing was ever said. Anyways to the point - I get a phone call today that my cleaning isn't good enough. Not from my bosses but from one of the other ladies. She is always calling me while I'm not working. Yes I suck at vacuuming curtains, I'VE NEVER DONE IT B4. I keep the place clean but I guess I am supposed to polish everything constantly, clean windows, and all this other stuff I've never been asked to do. Urgh I actually miss facility where it was more about patient care. How do I get them to understand I am a CNA not a maid? I have no problem cooking a meal, washing soiled linen, and so forth but I'm not a maid. What would you guys do?

I am a Home Care provider as well, and we do provide a service that LTC work does not. Basically we are CNAs/Houskeeping when you take on Home Care. It is reality and I always say for someone that does not like housework and you just want to work as a CNA Home Care is not for them.

Our service provides people with help so that people can still live in their homes. That sometimes includes Housekeeping chores to keep a household running. LTCs have their own cleaning department but unfortunetly we don't have that.

This job is not always easy because sometimes the clients standards can be different then your own. I always try my best to do things the way the client wants it done, and if they have some critism for me I take what they have to say, and I say ok I'll try to do it differently, or better next time.

There is another side to this as well though and that is they can start to take advantage of you. For instance Mrs. Smith wants me to mop her floor while using a toothbrush. Sorry that is not going to happen. But sometimes I do go the extra mile if I know they need it done. I worked for one couple where the women was the client but the man had issues too and could not do certain things. So I offered once to shovel their sidewalk because their grandaughter gave up on it and she needed transport to be able to get to her front door to bring her to an appointment. Sure that is not part of my job discription, but if I see a need sometimes it does not hurt to go the extra mile. Sometimes you have to have a servants heart and know even the housekeeping is as important of a task as a bed bath

There are certain things that my agency says we do not have to do either. Like wash cars, cleaning out the garage. mow the grass. We caregivers do not do these type of things. If you have doubts about certain chores they want you to do ask your facility if indeed you are required to do certain tasks. If your agency says no you do not have to do that, then you will have to explain to them that your agencies rules do not allow you to do that task and they will have to have someone like a family member do it for them.

For you with your coworker I'd somehow just tell her that you are sorry, and you will try to do a little better next time, and I am learning from mistakes I might have made. But if you know you are doing a decent job then just let your agency know you really are doing the best you can and you believe your coworker is being a tad bit picky.

SoCaliLVN, CNA, LVN

Specializes in Psych.

Unfortunately I don't work for an agency so I have no one to refer to really. Their daughters interviewed me and hired me, asking me to start the next day. He pays me with a check every week. The complaints from one of the ladies who has been there the longest started about two weeks ago when I reported to one of the daughters that her mom had pressure ulcer and it wasn't healing. These ladies don't exactly turn her q2hours as I was trained to. Actually we have no LVN or RN who we go to and the doctor they call to write prescriptions basically orders band aid type stuff that tears skin. I told them to order mepilex and she's healing better. We were all just hired at different times. The home is spotless. It's huge and collects dust at times but it's pretty much spotless. I do leave notes or tips so we can all be on the same page but maybe they feel like I'm stepping on their toes. Sorry my writing is all over the place

duskyjewel

Specializes in hospice.

I'm not even sure this job counts as employment hours for renewing your CNA certification. Be aware of that risk, because usually for those hours to count, they need to be with an agency or in a facility, somewhere you're supervised.

It might be time to talk to the daughters about how you're feeling that your duties and the expectations of you are not a good fit, and lay out your parameters. It may just be time to move on.

Ok I understand a little better now what is going on here. It is hard thing to do private care and I for one would never do it. There are too many things that if they were to go wong could effect you as a CNA.

You need to PROTECT YOURSELF!!! If your client were to fall the family might sue you. Also DOCUMENT EVERYTHING!! I am concerned over these pressure sores. If a Dr. would look at them they might put it on you that you have been neglecting her, and it is hard for you to say otherwise. So many legal problems it makes me scared for you honestly. By working with an agency when this type of things goes on we have nurses at our fingertips and we are protected under the agency.

I'm not even sure this job counts as employment hours for renewing your CNA certification. Be aware of that risk, because usually for those hours to count, they need to be with an agency or in a facility, somewhere you're supervised.

It might be time to talk to the daughters about how you're feeling that your duties and the expectations of you are not a good fit, and lay out your parameters. It may just be time to move on.

And this from duskyjewel :yes: She is right that you need to work at some form of agency or facility to be able for your hours to be able to renew your certificate.

JustBeachyNurse, RN

Specializes in Complex pediatrics turned LTC/subacute geriatrics. Has 11 years experience.

In order to count you need oversight by a licensed nurse (most states an RN). In my states you can only be certified as a CHHA if affiliated with a licensed home health agency under supervision of an RN. RNs secure medical orders as needed but there are limits as to what in home aides can do, wound care & assessment is often relegated to skilled nursing only due to the assessment component and treatment orders.

You may want to reconsider this job and consider working for an agency.

SDALPN

Specializes in Peds(PICU, NICU float), PDN, ICU.

I'd report the pressure sores and then I'd get out. You can even get out and then report it. But they need more care than you can provide. You are risking your certification. You state that you can get work easily. So you will be fine without them. An agency will back you better if the cleaning tasks get too extreme. Good luck!

SeattleJess

Specializes in None yet..

Ok I understand a little better now what is going on here. It is hard thing to do private care and I for one would never do it. There are too many things that if they were to go wong could effect you as a CNA.

You need to PROTECT YOURSELF!!! If your client were to fall the family might sue you. Also DOCUMENT EVERYTHING!! I am concerned over these pressure sores. If a Dr. would look at them they might put it on you that you have been neglecting her, and it is hard for you to say otherwise. So many legal problems it makes me scared for you honestly. By working with an agency when this type of things goes on we have nurses at our fingertips and we are protected under the agency.

And this from duskyjewel :yes: She is right that you need to work at some form of agency or facility to be able for your hours to be able to renew your certificate.

The voices of reason have spoken!

Yep, I'm not all the way through reading this thread but from the time I finished the opening post I was thinking, "Get out of there!"

No trouble getting a job? Then get thee to an agency. I loved my short time at ResCare, a home health agency, before I got a job with a SNF. I could pick exactly what I wanted to do. Like you, I specified "no housekeeping or cooking" because that did nothing to advance the skills I needed to progress to a hospital tech job or maintain my CNA license. When my agency did send me to interview with someone who turned out to want housekeeping and cooking, I was paid for my time and mileage and could turn the job down with no problem at all.

Don't waste energy thinking about irrelevant personality issues or how to solve problems in areas where you don't want areas (i.e. housekeeping.) Get clear on your goals and needs. (I bet you'll decide this job doesn't meet them.) Then do what you need to do to take care of yourself with dignity and respect for all.

Let us know what happens, please!

SeattleJess

Specializes in None yet..

Unfortunately I don't work for an agency so I have no one to refer to really. Their daughters interviewed me and hired me, asking me to start the next day. He pays me with a check every week. The complaints from one of the ladies who has been there the longest started about two weeks ago when I reported to one of the daughters that her mom had pressure ulcer and it wasn't healing. These ladies don't exactly turn her q2hours as I was trained to. Actually we have no LVN or RN who we go to and the doctor they call to write prescriptions basically orders band aid type stuff that tears skin. I told them to order mepilex and she's healing better. We were all just hired at different times. The home is spotless. It's huge and collects dust at times but it's pretty much spotless. I do leave notes or tips so we can all be on the same page but maybe they feel like I'm stepping on their toes. Sorry my writing is all over the place

I'm just going to repeat what has already been said. This is a high-risk situation for you. If your client is developing pressure ulcers while under your care, you are going to be presumed to be contributing to the problem. Arguing that your care was impeccable and the other caregivers' negligence was the only source of her injuries is risky. Says who? And even if you could eventually prove your noninvolvement, why buy a lawsuit or professional complaint? Sure, documenting is better than nothing but look at the Big Picture. You're a mandated reporter. If you think the care is deficient, report it and get out.

Submit a written resignation detailing your concerns, "as I have reported previously." I don't think you're going to win a ******* contest with the other employees who have seniority.

SeattleJess

Specializes in None yet..

I am a Home Care provider as well, and we do provide a service that LTC work does not. Basically we are CNAs/Houskeeping when you take on Home Care. It is reality and I always say for someone that does not like housework and you just want to work as a CNA Home Care is not for them.

Our service provides people with help so that people can still live in their homes. That sometimes includes Housekeeping chores to keep a household running. LTCs have their own cleaning department but unfortunetly we don't have that.

This job is not always easy because sometimes the clients standards can be different then your own. I always try my best to do things the way the client wants it done, and if they have some critism for me I take what they have to say, and I say ok I'll try to do it differently, or better next time.

There is another side to this as well though and that is they can start to take advantage of you. For instance Mrs. Smith wants me to mop her floor while using a toothbrush. Sorry that is not going to happen. But sometimes I do go the extra mile if I know they need it done. I worked for one couple where the women was the client but the man had issues too and could not do certain things. So I offered once to shovel their sidewalk because their grandaughter gave up on it and she needed transport to be able to get to her front door to bring her to an appointment. Sure that is not part of my job discription, but if I see a need sometimes it does not hurt to go the extra mile. Sometimes you have to have a servants heart and know even the housekeeping is as important of a task as a bed bath

There are certain things that my agency says we do not have to do either. Like wash cars, cleaning out the garage. mow the grass. We caregivers do not do these type of things. If you have doubts about certain chores they want you to do ask your facility if indeed you are required to do certain tasks. If your agency says no you do not have to do that, then you will have to explain to them that your agencies rules do not allow you to do that task and they will have to have someone like a family member do it for them.

For you with your coworker I'd somehow just tell her that you are sorry, and you will try to do a little better next time, and I am learning from mistakes I might have made. But if you know you are doing a decent job then just let your agency know you really are doing the best you can and you believe your coworker is being a tad bit picky.

Yes, it's all a matter of degree and how far you're willing to stretch. I interviewed with one lovely, lovely couple for a HHA position through an agency. My entire job would have consisted of cooking them meals "from scratch" with organic ingredients, providing transportation and doing housework (including ironing the sheets.) No CNA skills needed!

There are some limits to accommodation, though, even if you're willing to push the limits. You need to be careful working outside your job description. If you're injured while doing that you may be disqualified from L&I benefits, etc.

JustBeachyNurse, RN

Specializes in Complex pediatrics turned LTC/subacute geriatrics. Has 11 years experience.

I'm just going to repeat what has already been said. This is a high-risk situation for you. If your client is developing pressure ulcers while under your care, you are going to be presumed to be contributing to the problem. Arguing that your care was impeccable and the other caregivers' negligence was the only source of her injuries is risky. Says who? And even if you could eventually prove your noninvolvement, why buy a lawsuit or professional complaint? Sure, documenting is better than nothing but look at the Big Picture. You're a mandated reporter. If you think the care is deficient, report it and get out.

Submit a written resignation detailing your concerns, "as I have reported previously." I don't think you're going to win a ******* contest with the other employees who have seniority.

Failure to report as a mandated reporter can have serious repercussions. Working as a CNA or HHA without nursing oversight can also be disastrous.

SoCaliLVN, CNA, LVN

Specializes in Psych.

Thank you guys for the input. I hadn't even looked at it in regards to my hours needed and so forth. It really worked with my school schedule and pays better than most but I would rather go broke than risk my future as I am pursing nursing. I will be typing up my concerns and notice before heading to work today. My primary concern is for the patient/client and not keep the furniture in guest room polished. Once again thank you for helping clarify what I should focus on

i think you are doing the right thing. I feel sorry for your client, and I think she needs a good advicate to make sure these pressure sores are taken care of and the rest of her needs are met properly. But the way the family is going about her care it is not the greatest, and she needs more monitoring of care. If they want to keep her at home with them I understand that but something has to change. Maybe you could ask the family if getting a agency to help them is even a posibility if her care is more then they can handle on their own.

Missingyou, CNA

Specializes in Long term care. Has 20 years experience.

I agree! I think it's a good thing you decided to leave this family. This job has red flags all over it!

SO many things could easily go wrong for you here....ESPECIALLY because you are a CNA. I know you're only trying to help but, even the fact that you are sugguesting things to put on a pressure sore could be looked at as going "outside your scope of practice".

The client could get fall/get hurt, the family sues you. ...the family could sue you for what THEY decide is neglect by you for any reason and you have nothing/noone protecting you like a homecare agency.

I could go on and on too, but most of it has already been said.

The pay may be more, but it is SO not worth the risk! :nailbiting:

SoCaliLVN, CNA, LVN

Specializes in Psych.

Quick update - I went in yesterday and called the MD. Normally that's considered out of my place but I want to cover all areas. They said they want to see her and I believe it will be a house visit. Today I spoke with the main housekeeper and I let her know that I cannot work like this. She insisted I wouldn't get in trouble, that none of us would. In the end she said she would find someone to replace me. I am going to email the daughter a copy of the letter I am giving to the mister. If I am missing anything please let me know. I want to tie any loose ends and make sure that I'm covered and that she is left under good care.

Here's hoping my luck with jobs hasn't run out.

I'm glad you gave us an update.

For all the legal things I am not sure if you should need to do anything else so I am hoping someone else might have the answers you need to that.

The main housekeeper apparently does not understand the reasons you are leaving. It is not just because of the pressure ulsers that you are leaving this job. It is because of the things that COULD happen in the future that could ruin your career. This won't effect her one bit in her job choice as a housekeeper, but it could you.

Also, I'm not saying that someone is going to get in trouble, but what makes her the fountain of knowledge and can be so sure someone couldn't get in trouble. Those type of sores do not magically appear over night. The household and cargivers need to learn a few things to do so that they can prevent these from happening again. You can do the right thing and be turning her every 2 hours as required, but if the other care givers and family are not doing it the prevention meassures your doing become usless. If they get educated on how to take care of a bed ridden person these type of things can be prevented.

If you do have any more communication with the family see if they can get some lambs wool. I had a client that was bed ridden for 2 to 3 years. He only would be up in a chair for about 1 to 2 hours and then back in bed. he never once got a ulcer or even a bed sore. All do to proper skin care from us care givers and his wonderful wife. We were there two different shifts a day that were 2 hours a shift. The rest of the time his wife did everything for him. He got a bed bath twice a day, and if his skin anywhere got the slightest red we would put bag balm on it. He also had a little lambs wool rug that his feet and ankles rest on and it worked great.

Good Luck in everything. I'm sure you'll be able to find something much better and wished you quit months ago

Edited by mvm2