HH nurse, PDN- private duty nurse?

  1. Hi. I hope this is the appropriate place to post this. I am writing my resume and i want it to accurately reflect what i have done, of course. The thing is this. I don't have any work experience except for 4 months at this certain hospital because i was a new grad. I had to then stop work because i needed to take care of my mother who was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML). Because i am a nurse and she is my mother, who trust me dearly, i was the person to care for her and so i stopped work. I utilized a lot of nursing skills while taking care of her (administered subcu chemo, did her blood transfusions, monitored her, and kept her ocologist updated re: her condition). I also read up on a lot of things before doing them even if i have done them because she is my mom. I pretty much took care of her everywhere! But all of this was done out of love and understanding- that is, she didn't like pay me or "formally employ" me. My mom is a doctor and so her oncologist alowed me to do these things as he also knows i worked at this hospital where she received her inpatient tx, where he works, where i used to work. I know the policies and practices of the hospital and i know the staff there so i could do these things "informally". I have these skills but i don't know what title i could use to put these skills under. Any suggestions, pls.? I knew my limitations but i also knew i could take care of my mother and i learned many things along the way (but not putting my mom's life at risk), which could be useful to put in the resume. Could i use the title of private duty nurse or if something else, do you have suggestions? Thanks!
  2. Visit purplecotton profile page

    About purplecotton

    Joined: Sep '05; Posts: 76; Likes: 2
    Specialty: med/surg & a tad of onco.


  3. by   caliotter3
    You did a good job of describing what you did for your mom. Please accept my praise that you could take care of your mom. Many people, for various reasons, can not care for their sick family members. Only have two suggestions: thoroughly describe what you did, as you did in your post, and call it private duty nursing. Also, you might be able to obtain a reference, preferably written, from your mother's doctor, attesting to your performance in these duties. Good luck.
  4. by   purplecotton
    Thanks for your thoughtful words. It is unfortunate that my mother died recently, though from complications which may have been avoided if she opted to do the BMT right after her first chemo. tx., immediately when in remission. Her blast cells went up to 95% when she relapsed inspite of another set of chemo. txs. Her leukemic cells just grew more resistant. The choice was ultimately hers. She was a "better to live a close-to-normal life and die early than spend more time in the hospital" kind of person. Quality over quantity. Doctors (like my mother) are not easy patients to treat but i love her for all that she is:heartbeat . We grieve but we don't despair. Anyway... back to the reality of it all.. there are succeeding problems.

    #1: If i use the title of PDN in my resume, in many applications i have encountered, they ask for the NAME OF YOUR EMPLOYER, NAME OF YOUR SUPERVISOR/MANAGER, SALARY BEGINNING TO END. And these are boxes i MUST fill since i will be using PDN as my title. What would i put in these boxes?

    #2: References must be more than one. If i have an "employer" wouldn't that be my dad since most of the care was given at home? Also, the nursing staff who were there while we were in the hospital (must it be a like the charge nurse- a nurse with authority, or just those who have observed the care)?

    Double thanks!
  5. by   caliotter3
    In this case, I would write down the name of your father. Make no mention of the fact that he is your father. For amount of wages, assuming that you were living in the home, you might list the minimal amount for renting a room in your area, or you might just say "room and board provided" (so that you don't have to explain that there are no tax records for wages that would exist if you had a conventional employer). As for the nurses in the hospital, try to get the highest ranking nurse who observed you if she is willing. You might want to compose a letter yourself. Usually people are more willing to sign reference letters if the letter is written for them. Likewise, you could compose a letter for your father's signature, leaving out all indications that you are members of the same family. I know how hard it is to do anything when you do not have references, so I hope you can get around this successfully. My condolences on your mother's death. I am glad that she was able to have her last days the way she wanted them and now she has no further suffering. My best wishes to you and your family.
  6. by   purplecotton
    Thank you very much Your help is greatly appreciated...really. Though having his name (of course, his last name included) on the letter in plain black and white...then they know my last name... I think they would end up asking if we are related in any way. I just don't want to do anything that would make them think that i was "hiding" something because then they would question my character.

    I agree with your idea to write the recommedation letters knowing that most people, busy as they are, don't have the time to do these things. Not directly related to my situation though- say my employer was an institution, wouldn't the letter need to be on special paper (paper with a letter head). So, this means two things: i would then need to make a draft of the letter and let them type it onto their paper with their letter head or i request for their stationery and completely make it for them?

  7. by   NRSKarenRN
    Placing my manager hat on here....

    Sorry: You were not hired as a private duty nurse so can not claim that as a job you held. To do so would be considered fradualent in the eyes of most HR and Nursing Managers.

    What you can do is list under "Job Experience" the formal hospital position.

    then have " Additional Experience" category:
    Date to Date:
    provided nursing care to Dr. XYG, family member, under direction oncologist Dr ABC. Administered at home subcu chemo, blood transfusions, IV care (insert type IV access), performed Nursing assessment with weekly + prn assessment to Dr ABC.
    Add in any lab work, catheter care, or other clinical skills performed.

    This is showing the nursing skills you utilized without trying to look like fraudlently padding resume IMHO and explains why you have employment gap honestly. Ask DR ABC if they would be a reference for you.

    That type resume would get you hired by me, instead of going to the trash bin when it come out pt was family member.

    Home infusion companies possibly would consider hiring you especially with Oncologist reference.

    Good luck and hope you find your niche.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Jan 19, '07
  8. by   caliotter3
    NRSKaren gave good advice. However, I think you misunderstood my intentions in my reply to your problem. I was not suggesting that you "hide" anything, just that you do not draw attention to it. As a matter of fact, I intended to make this response that properly worded the fact that you were caring for a family member could be addressed in all letters of reference for you. That would remove the onus of family member. After all, it is not your fault that you took care of a family member. And, to be open about it, I, too, spent a good deal of time taking care of a family member, my mother. Problems arose. I was directly told by an attorney, that I could be held liable for anything illegal or bad that happened to my mother while she was in my care. The attorney told me that it did not matter that my mother was not paying me money for her care, I was still liable for her well being, and should leave the situation in order to protect the status of my license. That is why I am very careful in the amount of involvement I dare to get into with home health care clients, whether employed or not. When even just asked questions, I refer people to their healthcare providers, their attorneys, and/or referral agencies. Once you are gainfully employed in a traditional employment situation, you can put this "family member" special situation behind you.
  9. by   purplecotton
    That's alright. I do have to take everything into consideration. All the advice you give is worth everything to me . Ultimately, it is i who must make the decision and think things through. Just replying to my post was what a kind a thoughtful nurse would do. Because i am new to this area, i am asking for help. I don't have any plans of getting into HH or PDN nursing but because it seemed to me to be what i was doing, i posted here. I just had to know for the sake of preparing a decent, well-made nursing resume that would be truthful and work harmoniously with my application data. I just don't want to leave out an important and current learning phase of my life. I am actually interested in becoming an oncology nurse. Memories are hard to forget. Time will tell. Thanks for all the input.

    Take care!
  10. by   MJMRN
    hello..i would like to ask..where could i found the APDNPP?? i would like to become a member of PDN.. thank you... my no. is 09158862633
  11. by   Jenn55e
    What does APDNPP stand for?
  12. by   Kyasi
    On our application there is a section to 'explain any gaps in employment'. People often use this area to describe care given to an ill family member. You could then list your mother's doctor as a personal reference (ask him first!) Although this was not an official 'job' I would certainly take that experience into consideration if I were reviewing your application.

  13. by   Kyasi
    I replied to this post yesterday but don't see my reply. I will try again. On our applications, there is a place to explain any gaps in employment. This would also be a good place to give these details if you see this on an application. I take this into consideration as 'experience' if I see it on an application. I would suggest using the oncologist (with his permission) as a personal reference on your application. I admire the kind of selfless people who will put their personal life on hold temporarily to care for a loved one. That is the kind of employee I like to hire. Best of luck to you.

  14. by   Kyasi
    I admire the kind of selfless people who will put their personal life on hold temporarily to care for a loved one. That is the kind of employee I like to hire. Best of luck to you.


    Geez! I looked 3 times for my first reply and couldn't find it so wrote a second one. Then when I couldn't seem to remove it, I edited it to just say the above, which I didn't say in my first post and now have 3 posts here. Isn't that a 'remove this post' button??? Sorry for all these replies.