Hi, I'm new here so really don't know what I'm doing. I graduated 12 years ago with an ADN, but only worked 4 years before starting to have kids. I've stayed home with them since, but now they're all in school so I'm thinking about going back to work. I really only want part time, something pretty flexible and was considering home health. I'm a little scared about jumping back in after being out for so long, and was wondering what others thought. Do you think home health is something that can be jumped into after being out of nursing for eight years? I've actually talked to one place that seems to be OK with it, said they'd give me as long an orientation as I needed. Also was wondering just how flexible it really is. Are you able to be off when you need to?
Aug 24, '06
I think it depends on how your assessment skills are....what type of nursing you did prior to leaving to raise your kids. If you are confident in your nursing assessment
skills, that's half of it. You have to be autonomous, use critical thinking skills.....good nursing judgement. If you have all that, plus a lengthy orientation, you should do okay. You cannot learn home care quickly in my opinion. I would say it takes about 6 months of steady working to feel somewhat comfortable in home care, and at least a year before you start to feel confident. As far as flexibility...it all depends on the agency you work for...and if you are a case manager or prn nurse. I worked as a case manager throughout the entire time my kids were babies and small children. It's flexible but you still have to take call, work some weekends, and some holidays, but it's totally different than working in a hospital environment. The flexibility all depends on the agency and how they work.
Aug 24, '06
I see you're a neighbor to the south. I live in Kansas. I am not in home health, but do make lots of referrals to home health in hospital based case management position I currently have. Just one thing to think about, people are leaving the hospital and going to home care a lot sicker than they used to. We send people home with home wound vacs and requiring complex wound care, all the time. So its not just about assessment, but new technologies as well. Expect that kind of care if you sign on for home health. PICC's, drains and the like are not unusual at all. Good luck in your plans for returning to work.
Aug 25, '06
Thanks for the replies. I worked med/surg for about 1 1/2 years, and really liked it. I feel like I did have good assessment skills--then. Now I've been out so long, I know I won't feel comfortable by myself for a while. After that, I worked in an OB/gyn office, which I loved. Probably not the best background for home health though. The main thing I'm wanting is something that will be flexible so I can be off with my kids and all their activities.
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