Typical Day For A Home Health Nurse - page 12

Not a bad day today... started back per diem today. 6 cases, all in the same township. Not my usual zip codes though, so I did waste some time and scheduled visits akimbo, instead of in a line... Read More

  1. by   KR
    Hiya. ICU RN here with 6+ years of experience. Looking for a change. Think that I am going to schedule a ride a long with one of the local HH agencies in the upcoming weeks. I really don't know a whole lot about HH. Most of what I know is from reading these posts on the HH forum. I am looking for a job where I can work straight evenings. For quality of life issues, I really need to find a 3p-11p job. I was wondering what questions I should ask my ride a long or interview person? What did you wish you had asked or do you reccomend asking? This is what I have come up with so far.
    1- Is this job hourly or salary?
    2- What do you consider full time?
    3- Do you get paid per hour (regardless of if you are driving, doing paperwork, making phone calls, or seeing a pt.)?
    4- Or do you get paid per visit?
    5- Do you get a company car?
    6- Do you get a company cell phone?
    7- Do you get reimbursed 100% for gas and mileage and wear and tear on your car if you do not get a company car?
    8- Do you have laptops or do you have to do the old fashioned paper charting?
    9- What kind of orientation do you get?
    10- What is the average daily/weekly mileage?
    11- How many square miles, or counties, etc does this agency cover?
    12- Know I need to ask questions on my personal safety but do not know how to work that ?

    This is all that I can think of off the top of my head. Any input would be greatly appreciated. TIA.
  2. by   shansky
    I have been an in home peds LPN for many years through various agencies .The work is with children with trach, vent , gt, and many medical problems , but they do great in home with the right care. I love the work , but the pay has actually decreased over the last 10 yrs ! I heard that LPN,s can contract with medicaid directly and skip the agency and get much better pay for a lot less "agency" hassle. Does anyone know how to do this ? shansky
  3. by   Ks mommy nurse
    Quote from shansky
    I have been an in home peds LPN for many years through various agencies .The work is with children with trach, vent , gt, and many medical problems , but they do great in home with the right care. I love the work , but the pay has actually decreased over the last 10 yrs ! I heard that LPN,s can contract with medicaid directly and skip the agency and get much better pay for a lot less "agency" hassle. Does anyone know how to do this ? shansky

    Yeah, I'd like to know if that can be done (contract through medicaid and skip the agency). I've been doing this for a few years with the youngest being 18 months to an 89 year old. My pay has increased with each agency that I apply to. But I know that eventually I'll be at the cut off point where I can't demand more pay. That's why I'm looking into going back to school.
  4. by   questioningRN2007

    I have been out of the nursing field for about a year. Before that I worked on a medical-surgical unit at a hospital for a little over a year. I absolutely hated it. Now I have the opportunity to do home health nursing. I have a job right now that I like; it's not as challenging as nursing and sometimes I miss nursing. The agency pay is good, I would be making about 38% more than my current job plus mileage and cell phone reimbursement. The biggest drawback to me is the on-call stuff. I would have to be on-call one night a week and one weekend a month, or maybe a little more. They also do rotating on-call for holidays. Is this on-call schedule normal?

    Any advice would be appreciated!!!
  5. by   Ks mommy nurse
    Here I am again, I just posted raving about HH and now my patient got admitted to the hospital last night. I had to convince the parent to take her to see her doctor. The doc strongly suggested that she be admitted tonight. That's probably a down fall about HH., if your pt gets sick enough you don't get to work. I might find my usual fall back case, that always needs a nurse to do a shift til she goes home again. I'll be praying for my lil' precious patient to get well. I ask those who read this to do so as well. Thanks.
  6. by   teaka
    I have been in home health the last 7 years straight and about 12 years total. This seems like a pretty typical on-call schedule. On-call is one downside to HH. Plus, a lot of HH nurses I know sometimes finish their documentation at home, especially if paid by the visit. If you would be hourly then this may not be an issue for you. But, the benefits personally and professionally, in my opion, you will reap being a home health nurse usually out weigh the on-call.
  7. by   cathy54
    I really would like to do HH. I have just left a Nursing Home. Lord willing I will NOT work at another one. I need a change in direction. I believe that HH is it. Thanks for letting me know what to expect.
  8. by   benami313
    Hi all,
    After the required 1 year of medsurg in the hospital post nursing school,(hated it!) I have decided to try home health. I am starting part time, so no mileage, no benefits, and no computer. I'll try it out and see. I went out with a nurse today, and I had to drive my shiny new car through horendous neighborhoods and park there! Got it scratched too! I am a bit spoiled and sheltered, and this is a little scary! I do want to make a difference and be a good nurse bla bla... Sigh! Pay is per visit. I got hopelessly lost on my way home, and decided to splurge $500 on a GPS navigation system. I cannot afford to be lost on winding highways, when I have to pick up kids from school!
  9. by   luzababy
    I've been doing Home health for a few years now and going back to the hospital. Benami313, if you're seriously thinking about working for a HH agency, you really need to look into an agency that pays mileage because you are going to be using your car A LOT. Don't forget car maintenance. Instead of needing an oil change every 3 months, you're looking at every month and a half. Also, think about gas...with prices going up, it can get pretty pricey.
    I'm leaving because of the paperwork. The pay may be a little better, but when it comes down to it, you're actually getting paid less because you're CONSTANTLY working. And as soon as you think you're back on track, the cycle starts all over again. Not only that, but it's the constant phone calls...the office will call you ALL DAY LONG, racking up your phone bill. My last phone bill was >200.00 -- a huge ouch on my pocketbook!
    The good thing is you can set your own schedule; you're not stuck inside a hospital all day long; and you can run errands in between patients.
    Good luck and hope everything works for you!
  10. by   Wgbem
    I have been doing home care for 4 years. Rather than investing in a GPS system, why don't you just map out your assignment before you head out. I have used that method and www.mapquest.com has become my best friend. That has worked great for me.

    I hope that helps.
  11. by   benami313
    Thanks guys. The mileage thing is definitely an issue, but I accepted a little more per visit in lieu of that. Mapquest is great, and I do use it a lot! But life is so unpredictable. One or two people cancel on you midway through the day, and suddenly I don't know how to get from A to C! I use mapquest as a backup, but the GPSis great! I recalculates when there is road work and detours and things that would otherwise have flustered me greatly!
  12. by   CapeCodMermaid
    I also bought a GPS and I'm using it as a tax deduction next year. The joke in my family is when they were handing out senses of direction in Heaven, I couldn't find the line!
    My company gives all the nurses a cell phone so at least the phone bill isn't an issue and they have a mileage reimbursement, but I know what you mean about the wear and tear on the car....and my poor body trying to maneuver through some of the yards and houses is like being on Fear Factor!
    Would it be rude to ask what all y'all make per hour or per visit?
  13. by   ruseenmetoo RN
    Quote from regnursein99
    Great thread, Hoolihan.

    I have worked Med-Surg for 4 years and 1-1/2 years with Hospice.

    I just took a Home Health job and will start March 6. I will do some case-manager and some home visits. Altho I did home visits w Hospice, and had done a little cross-training w HH, this will be a real change for me. I am really looking forward to it. I have an ortho prob w my left ankle and really needed to get a job where I didn't pound the floors for 12-14 hours.

    We are going all computer and have lap-tops for our paperwork in the field. Do you have experience w this? I am fairly computer-competent and have no fears of it.

    The thing I have NO experience w is the insurance stuff. With my Med-surg backgraound, the nursing skills and documentation skills are what got me the job. How hard is it to grasp the insurance, OASIS, etc.???

    Any input will be welcomed.
    Oasis is a killer but once you get it you will be so proud of yourself!! Don't get frustrated, hang in......