Specialties Geriatric


I am interviewing for an MDS/Care Plan Coord. position on August 9th. I have done this previously (3.5 years ago.) I know there have been some changes but think I can probably figure those out once I get back into it.

I really enjoyed doing this position in the past. I want flexibility and I am hoping that this employer supports that. In my past job I was allowed to come and go as I pleased as long as I was present for care plan meetings. I also don't want for this to be a 40 hour week position. I know that at times it gets crazy and hectic. Admissions tend to come in spurts. I know all of this and realize that some weeks there will be over 40 hours and some weeks less.

Since I have been out of it for a while I have some questions. The facility is 100 beds with 10 beds skilled. Currently there are 92 residents with 6 skilled. If MDS, RAPS, and care plan meetings are all I have to do I would think this is doable in less than 40 hours most of the time.

When I did MDS before, therapy, social services, dietary, and activities filled out part of the MDS and did their own care plans. Do you all have this at your facilities as well? I don't know if this is the norm. Also, do you have many residents or family members attending care plan meetings? Where I did this before I had about 7 care plans for the meeting a week and usually had at least one family member in attendance. I alloted 15 mins for each resident. Is this parallel with what you all do?

Also, I know salaries vary across the board. On average, does the MDS nurse earn more than the floor RN by at least several dollars? When are part time and full time benefits offered at your facility (number of hours). I would much prefer to remain in an hourly position. Are you allowed flex. in your jobs or do you have to do 7-3:30 type thing? I enjoyed being able to come in at different times. This allowed me to talk with all three shifts and also assess the residents at different times of the day.

I know, so many questions. Thanks for your time.



356 Posts

At our facility, the MDS coordinator works forty hours a week. She does all of the nursing entries on the MDS from assessments that are done by the floor nurses, but she spends lots of time digging through the charts for information! Therapy and dietary and social service all do their own portions. We have ninety skilled beds, but very low tech, low key residents. At any time, we have about ten medicare residents. We average one or two admissions per week. Her salary is just about the same as mine, but much of that has to do with the fact she has worked here for almost twenty years. I do think it should be a high paying job ~ it's so critical that it be done right and that requires the right person! She is salaried,but I don't think hourly would be a problem either.

Care conferences are once a week and about half of our families attend. They are scheduled in fifteen minute slots and usually go from nine till one at the latest. If there is a new admission and family is coming, we do allow more time for those conferences.

My RNAC works 8-4:30, but I think that is because of her regimented personality, which makes her a wonderful RNAC. I would have no problem with the job being flexible as it can be done at any time of day, as long as there is the care conference attendance! Being there on different shifts is probably a plus.

Hope this helps!

Hi, I love doing MDS/Care Plans. I currently do all of the Medicare (Have about 20 on Medicare A right now), and my co-worker does the ICF. We have 128 beds. She can get the ICF done, and actually helps me on the Medicare. I usually have overtime. It takes alot of time to get all the admission stuff done. I hope if you take the position, your DON is as wonderful as the one I work for.

Please feel free to ask me any questions that you may have. Good Luck! ~Robin


328 Posts

Thanks to both of you for taking the time to respond to me. donmomofnine you sound like a great DON- can I come to work for you? I am looking forward to my interview. The job can be tedious but I really loved it when I did it before. Do you all know anything about the MDS 3.0? When will it be implemented? I also have a couple of more questions. What is the LPN's role in the MDS? Are LPNs able to do everything with it except do the final sign off? I just resigned from my home health job yesterday. I loved my job but things were happening in the office that I didn't like. There is an LPN who works in the office there who is also very unhappy. Her role was to go over the Oasis (home health form similar to the MDS) and transmit it. I know she's looking to leave but would like to still work part time. I think she would be wonderful helping me (assuming I'm offered the job) to help with overflow as needed. What are the pay scales for an LPN in this position. We're in a rural area in the SE so pay is a little lower.

I am a LPN, and I pretty much run the show as far the MDS office goes. I am responsible for the Medicare A residents, and we just promoted up an RN to take over my former position MDS Coordinator for the ICF residents. While it is true that a RN has to sign the RB2 date (date of completion), she is only signing that it is complete, not correct. Thanks, Robin


328 Posts

Thanks Robin. That's good to know about the LPN's. There are so many regs and they are always changing. The second MDS job I had I worked part time and helped out when the census increased. Some weeks I worked 40 plus hours and some weeks only 10. I had one hall of ICF patients (64) that I did all on. I then helped her out with extra Medicare when it got busy. I found that the same nurse doing the same pt. for quarterly, changes in condition, and yearlys provided good continuity. The main thing I had trouble with was getting other disciplines to fill theirs out on time. I don't think there's ever a good solution to that- it's sort of like babysitting. Do you use programmed care plans or do you make up your own? I know that in nursing school care planning was shoved down our throats and I never thought I would need it. I was glad though for all of the exposure to it when I first started doing MDS's. Did you have much care planning in nursing school or did you have to learn it as you went? Do you stick to NANDA? Do you use NIC/NOC- I find that a little confusing.

No, we didn't spend much time in LPN school on Care Plans. I learned on the job. I actually spent time as a MDS/Rap/Care Plan trainer when our facility was part of NHC. I have always been a person that wanted to learn more, so it came in handy when the MDS position became available. We have alot of pre-programmed info in the computer, but I usually write my own. ~Robin


17 Posts

Are ther traveling nurse positions for the MDS RN in Long Term Care? I have been a MDS nurse in Ky since the beginning of MDS and I love the job but now I think I would like to travel and do MDS"s, maybe just fillinf in for facilities whose MDS Nurse has quit, Just working in the facility unti they can find a replacement for the one that quit.

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