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Hal_Dol

Hal_Dol

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once-retired B.Sc government biologist

Hal_Dol's Latest Activity

  1. Hal_Dol

    August 2013 Caption Contest: Win $100!

    Sleep? Once I get home I fill the cup with rum and coke.
  2. Hal_Dol

    What do you call your "greatest" compliment?

    I have been an LPN for about 7 years; but I got the compliment I treasure most when I was in LPN classes and working 3-11 as a CNA in a LTC facility on the weekend. A call bell rang from the room of two elderly ladies. As I entered the resident in bed A said, “My legs are aching, could you tell the nurse I need a pain pill?” I went to the nurses’ station, only to find the nurse in an involved discussion with the family member of another resident. Back in the patient’s room I explained the nurse was tied up with an emergency and probably wouldn’t be free for 15-20 minutes. “I can’t get you the pain pill, but maybe I can make you a little more comfortable while you wait.” After re-arranging the pillows that supported her leg I massaged her leg for 3-4 minutes. She thanked me and said she did feel a bit better. Since I was in the room anyway, I went to bed B and asked if she needed anything. The lady said, “No.” Knowing this lady was a retired RN, I felt especially flattered when she looked over at her friend in bed A and said simply, “You have the touch.”
  3. Hal_Dol

    Which Hospice companies are Good to work for?

    New Grads Getting Accepted In Hospice--For Becky8 et.al. I have worked in hospice for 4-5 years. When I first applied---after 3 years in a nursing homes---they said they wanted me to have had at least "some" work in home care settings. After about 1.5 years doing home care for an agency immediately got hired into hospice the first time I applied. Things may be different elsewhere but that was my experience in Florida. Hal_Dol Pain makes man think, Thought makes man wise, Wisdom makes pain endurable. Tea House of the August Moon
  4. Hal_Dol

    Denial, not just a river in Egypt

    Hello All: Just had a case of Alzheimer's patient whose wife insisted he liked the TV on all night. Patient had been awake about 36 hours---mumbling/ babbling (no specific words)/lip smacking. I had turned the TV off to see if lowering the stimuli in his room would help. Wife woke up for her "nightly check" of patient and turned TV back on. No difference either way; Ativan didn't help either. Lesson: I'm updating MY living will to specifically say the TV must be off. My fear is that the attending hospice worker will have the TV on and I'll die at 4:10 AM.....with the last thing I'll hear being an infomercial for how to make money in real estate! Tewdles wrote in earlier post, "I hope too that your guy gets to have a comfortable and dignified death."
  5. Hal_Dol

    Nursing, the field of medicine or customer service?

    WOW, long thread....guess it touched a sensitive nerve. I didn't wade through all the posts so maybe this point has already been made: (heard from an extremely competent charge nurse, after smiling at a patient BUT firmly telling him he couldn't have/do/whatever the request was.) Out of hearing of the resident the charge nurse said to me, "I'm here to save his ass, not kiss it!"
  6. Hal_Dol

    Question about LPNs in Hospice

    Kaylee3: I think I understand your question/dilemma; had the same problem when I first approached a hospice provider. My solution was to quit the nursing home job I had and go work for an agency. They frequently placed me in private homes, and occasionally I even ended up doing hospice cases. When I went for my interview with VITAS a year or two later, the nurse administrator looked at me and said, "Aha, now I can put the application and the face together!" My application was good enough to get me the interview; but it was the fact that the she remembered me---favorably it seems --- for the care I had given to one of the clients she was looking in on when I was on duty. From there the interview was a breeze. In fact, what I remember most about the interview was her comment, "Never insult another nurse in the county....someday you'll be asking him/her for a job."
  7. Perhaps Not On Topic I have only been a nurse for 5 years; and do not work in a hospital but from what I've noticed/read everywhere (medical + public sites) hospitals are primarily interested in whether you have a valid license AND are still alive-and-available. What I am trying to say that with the current shortage you probably have the luxury of doing what YOU like/want. At 63 years old I'd say doing what you like/LOVE---as I do now---will make you marketable simply because: -you'll be working hard -you'll be learning because it's interesting to YOU -cheerful and pleasant to work with because you want to work there aka it's not just about the money. PS:JUST as I hit the print it button---and NOT after reading the first reply---was when I saw the advice from CathyLew was so close to mine
  8. Hal_Dol

    Vitas Experience?

    Hello Youngheart....: Hospice just seems to be "my niche" ; I was a total disaster in a hospital unit, even a skilled care nursing home. (At the nursing home had this "terrible" habit of spending a moment talking to the residents instead of doing my charting. Finally got not-so-gently-pushed-out-the-door.) I am now in the LPN-to-RN transition program at the local community college. At the "introduce yourself" on orientation day all the fresh young visionaries, who were NOT LPN's already, were gushing about how happy they were to have finally been accepted / I've always wanted to be a nurse type of comment. When it was my turn I said, "I'm already an LPN, and I LOVE the job I have. But the company I work for only hires LPNs for night shifts. Well, I'm 63 years old---so around 4:30 am my body says, 'Why don't you get a day job'. Becoming an RN will just open new doors for me." Allan PS:Guessing from your online name you aren't just out of high school, true? Personally I'm a retired government fisheries biologist with a B.Sc. in my back pocket and 25,000 miles of coastal and offshore sailing during my "retirement". Only got into nursing in 1999.
  9. Hal_Dol

    Vitas in dfw area nurses( beware)

    There IS another view of the world---and VITAS. Perhaps dfw has problems, all I can say is--as an LPN that has worked for VITAS in Florida for 3 years--the company has treated me very well. This includes tolerating me say "No thank you" to shifts because I have an assignment due in 2 days in my LPN-to-RN transition program. In reply to the second post--from the client/family side--all I can add is that it truly pains me to hear that anyone has received poor service from the company I am proud to work for. People make mistakes, and I have no idea what happened in your situation; but I do hope you spoke to someone in the company about your problem. Most of the staff I know strive to live up to the company motto, "Today I'll do my best. Tomorrow I'll do better." Pax Vobiscum
  10. Hal_Dol

    Vitas Experience?

    Though it is 2009 as I type this, I can't stand the thought of someone else reading this thread and believing everything they see! VITAS is the only hospice I have worked for so I cannot compare the service they provide to service provided by other for-profit (aka evil) or non-profit (aka we're all Mother Teresa) companies/ organizations. VITAS has field teams led by an RN who visits 1-2 times a week when patient is stable and daily when there is a signifigant change taking place. During the times of change -- or crisis -- there is 24 hour per day bedside 1-on-1 care. I know VITAS staff this way because I am an LPN that works ONLY 13 hour night shifts on "crisis care". The fact that VITAS continues to grow year-over-year suggests we are doing a good job at filling a need. Pax Vobiscum, Allan Paterson, allan_paterson_1945@yahoo.com Pain makes man think, Thought makes man wise, Wisdom makes pain endurable. Teahouse of the August Moon
  11. Hal_Dol

    Question about LPNs in Hospice

    LPNs are certainly valued by VITAS, a national for profit hospice organization that operates in a number of states. Yes RNs are the “team leader” and make the visits to see how the patient is and what his/her needs may be. Then when the patient’s condition becomes unstable around-the-clock care is started and staffed until the patient is again stable. In the day ---when family, or the visiting RN can give meds---staffing is with a CNA. However, night shifts are ALWAYS staffed with an LPN. That way meds can be given, wound care done when needed, etc. and the family can get some much needed sleep. I have been working for this company for 3 years as an LPN and absolutely LOVE my work. I feel I am being treated well, appreciated, and respected by my superiors. LPNs are still being hired, as the census increases.
  12. Hal_Dol

    Roll Call, LPN to RN Students!!!

    If anybody cares: -Told my orientation group I loved my current job, but the company only hires LPNs for night shift; and at 4am my body says why don't you get a day job--> so here I am in second semester of the local community college. -Hx=Got a B.Sc. in biology at 26, worked as a fisheries biologist with the federal gov't for 15 years. Quit career, quit marriage, retired-and-went-sailing in the Caribbean, etc. Re-married = needed money --> got my LPN degree at a community college 5 years ago. PS : Do the math -- Quit gov't at 40, sailed for 7-8 years, passed LPN state boards at 58.
  13. Hal_Dol

    Life Just Sucks Sometimes

    Situational Depression, Think? My Story is sort of parallel. I was married then quit good government career/got divorced/went sailing in the Caribbean (oops took all SEVEN years of the 1/7 sabbatical )àmoved ashore-got-married-again=back in the same "life sucks" situation {Albeit I did it of my own free will ) During one therapy session the psychiatrist--who no longer took patients with health insurance--said he'd gotten the feeling the HMOs wanted him to just go out in his waiting room and write scripts for Prozac. Now back in LPN-to-RN Transition, I almost failed due to medications ie with the Effexor I just didn't care. (What Me Worry?) Have tapered off and just squeaked through first semester=close call. But I DO believe that medications can help one stop spiraling down and give relief so one can look around/Up and begin to believe that life can be fun. And when I say "fun" it's using the Greek word eudaimonia, not drunked hedonism. PS:A Harvard trained psychiatrist I spoke with recently said that Prozac results in seratonin levels greatly ABOVE the levels in the average population, so in fact patients are being hooked on it. Pain makes man think, thought makes one wise, wisdom makes pain endurable. Tea House of the August Moon
  14. Hal_Dol

    Which Hospice companies are Good to work for?

    Hello All: I like VITAS very much. Have worked for them 2 years as an LPN that does crisis-care shifts of 13 hours each night. All the staff I've worked with are dedicated (no back-stabbing), compassionate, well-trained. Allan PS:I'm 62 y.o. so the ONLY problem I've had is that at 4am my body asks when I'm going to get a day job.
  15. Hal_Dol

    O2 safety

    My Personal Experience: Pt was bed bound with 2 LPM, across the room--20' away--Pt's husband was smoking a cigarette so to build trust I joined him. No problem; and he was using a 40' of tubing attached to his O2 generator set at 2.5 LPM. What I Was Told: Son of a pt was an ENT specialist. He related story of spending 2.5 hours cleaning remnants of beard, burns to nose and mouth only to have pt's family member arrive and say to pt: "George......not again!"
  16. Hello All:As an LPN with only 3 years experience I wanted hospice because I was frustrated by only having time to pass meds and then say "Hello" as I backed out of the room to answer the next call bell at in a nursing home. Hospice has given me great satisfaction from the time to interact with pt AND family. If you too like psychology and think surgeons are just high-paid-mechanics, you'll probably enjoy hospice. Only Drawback: I'm 62 and work 13 hour night shifts so around 4am my body asks why I don't get a "day job".