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Hospice nurse orientation

Hospice   (4,997 Views | 5 Replies)
by RNmommynk RNmommynk (New) New

637 Profile Views; 5 Posts

Hi everyone,

I am a new grad that has recently secured a hospice nurse position at a home hospice company. I have an extensive background as a CNA, but I have never done home health.

My question is: what should be included in a orientation for a nurse? The company I am employed with is a very small family-run business that doesn't have a "formal" orientation, since they don't seem to hire often. I know my rate of pay and that seems about it. I have followed a nurse, but mostly that has shown me what happens during visits and not policies/procedures (like how to fill out my time cards).

What information should I ask to my supervisor? I've only ever worked for corporations that have formal orientation.

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1 Follower; 2,074 Posts; 36,425 Profile Views

Yikes.

I am not certain how to respond other than with concern for you.

Ask your manager for the P&P manuals and for basic house keeping orientation...you know, the communication, education, HR, stuff like documenting time.

Good luck.

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434 Posts; 5,687 Profile Views

Most hospices have a couple days on general "stuff" that is not RN-specific -- filling out timesheets, infection control, how the company is organized, how a hospice is regulated, etc. Then there are several days or weeks on RN-specific topics, such as pain control, last days, dyspnea, symptom management, wound care and skin care, regulatory stuff, deaths, bereavement, self-care. Finally, somewhere in there you learn the computer system. My hospice has had a three-week orientation for many years.

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33 Posts; 1,478 Profile Views

Congratulations on your new job! I've been a nurse for five years years and just started with a home hospice company and like it so far. As far as training goes: I spent several days learning Medicare policies, infection control, and what seemed like a gazillion other computer-based educational materials. I was in the office learning how to keep track of my mileage, time, how to use McKesson for patient documentation, and getting my business cards. This last week, I was out in the field with another nurse observing and learning what paperwork I need for which circumstances. For instance, our patients that are in facilities require different paperwork & documentation than our patients that are at home. I practiced contacting the pharmacy, the DME company, and the doctors. I hope this gives you an idea of what to expect and I wish you the best of luck!

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118 Posts; 3,041 Profile Views

Thank you all for your replies! I waited it out to see how things would play. Apparently, the person I followed isn't on the "team" that I will be on, but she was supposed to show me the basics of the visits.

My manager has been very supportive this week and has filled in the gaps in my knowledge. It is a very small company (that is expanding), with very little nurse turnover. This is why they don't have a "formal" orientation. I did do an educational packet/tests and have completed my computer training. Then I will have two weeks of 1:1 training with the patients I will be taking. :-)

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QuiltDog specializes in Hospice Nursing.

134 Posts; 2,699 Profile Views

My hospice has a very comprehensive 90 day orientation program for all clinical staff. There are a number of computer training classes and day-long classes on symptom control, pharmacology, and technical skills. We schedule our new staff to observe different members of the transdisciplinary team, and then to work with a preceptor of their discipline.

Most nurses I have worked with have found the 90 days to be a little long, but I would rather have too much orientation than too little.

Good luck to you - hospice nursing is an incredible career!

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