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Home health nursing as a new grad?!

Home Health   (1,623 Views | 4 Replies)
by NurseAN94 NurseAN94 (New) New

333 Profile Views; 12 Posts

Hello everyone! I am graduating with my BSN next month and I just landed a job as a home health nurse. It’s actually a residency program where you are paired with a preceptor for 9 months and you take on assignments together. There are also 2 in class days per month where you learn about insurance, case management, and brush up on nursing skills. This program is through Rutgers university and after completing the residency they give you 2 free classes towards getting your masters degree. It seems like a cool deal but I’m just really afraid I’ll be missing out or limiting myself by taking a home care job straight out of college. Most of my classmates are looking to start in hospitals and I always thought that is where I would start too so I’m just a little skeptical to take the job. I guess I’m just wondering if you’d still learn as much as you’d learn if you were working in a fast paced setting such as a med surg floor? And I’m really wondering if it’s even a good idea to take this job as a new grad. 

Im also wondering if it’s going to be hard to get a job working in a hospital after only having home care experience. I don’t want to limit myself and get stuck in home care if I happen to hate it. I do have experience as a home health aide and I did like that so I am open to the idea. 

Im also worried about the pay. I live in northern nj where nurses in the hospital are paid around $34 an hour, but I highly doubt a home care nurse would get paid that much since I have a bachelors degree and I would not want to work for less than $31 an hour. 

If anyone has any insight that would be great. Thank you! 

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1 Follower; 623 Posts; 2,874 Profile Views

The agencies here usually won't take a new graduate because the nurse is required to work autonomously. There is not as much opportunity for advancement in HHC as in a hospital.  Many times acute care folks underestimate the skill sets of HHC nurses and you may have difficulty transitioning from HHC to a hospital later. I think sometimes they think we go to patients homes and read to them or something.  LOL.  I used to do a lot of picc's, ports, wound vacs and other high acuity nursing tasks and assessments, now that I am in a hospital I don't get to do those things anymore, it's all farmed out to others.  I find it ironic.  Also, the charting and EMR systems are totally different, the requirements are totally different. 

My other advice is decide asap what you want to be doing in 10 years, unless you want to try and survive being a bedside nurse till you retire?  (that is if your body holds up). 

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NRSKarenRN has 40 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion.

5 Followers; 10 Articles; 14,655 Posts; 161,658 Profile Views

Welcome!!!

Since this is a Home Health residency program, from your description sounds like there will be  good support as paired with a preceptor for 9 months.   Before accepting this offer, arrange a ride along with oneEdit of the staff to see what Home Health entails, and chat if program being offered is exactly as stated by management.

My prior employer with 600+ staff covering, Philadelphia city and suburban area stopped hiring new grads  despite similar 6 months residency as only 1 out of 10 RN's was still with agency at 6 month mark. 

In our area, IV infusion provided and managed by infusion companies only.   Major nursing activities focused on  Nursing assessment. medication management with patient education disease process, tons of wound care and wound vacs, Pleuevacs, drain care, post-op Hip/Knee replacements along with bariatric surgery, oncology, palliative care, telehealth for CHF/COPD/Diabetes/chronic disease management.   These are skills that are transferable to hospital settings.  

Two of my staff working central intake were able to transition to hospitals after that golden first year as quite knowledgeable in case management + requirements for transition to home care.

Best wishes finding a position that fits you!

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12 Posts; 333 Profile Views

Thank you both for sharing! My plan is to actually go into case management after a few years of experience. I am open to working for insurance companies or a hospital really. I just know I don’t want to be doing bedside nursing. I’ll do it for 2-3 years bur I don’t want to do it for much longer than that. I’ve been doing research and I see a lot of companies want you to have some experience in home health nursing before applying to be a case manager. I did get more information and the residency program will actually be 12 months long, from sept 3rd-aug 31st. I also love the flexibility of the schedule, and the relationships I’ll get to build with my clients. I did receive my offer letter and the pay is also amazing. They are offering me $39 an hour. I feel like this is an offer I can’t refuse! The benefits package is great also.  

Did most of the nurse residents in your program quit because they did not feel like they were equipped with the proper training & knowledge to continue? I don’t think a 6 month orientation would be long enough to just be out on your own afterwards either. 

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198 Posts; 2,317 Profile Views

Hi, 

I know this post is old. I’m also in new jersey. How is home-care working out for you ? Im a new grad myself with 7 months experience looking to get into a home care residency program.

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