Quote from rachelgeorgina
Im really curious, what sorts of things does psych home care involve? What sorts of patients do you see (disorders, levels of acuity etc), what sorts of things do you do with them (just chat, dispense meds, assess safety etc) and what sorts of other supports do your pts have?
Many of the clients have schizophrenia or bipolar disorder or schizoaffective disorder. They usually are non-compliant with their meds if they dont have help in this area. They need help from a homecare nurse who can bring the meds from the pharmacy and make sure that the meds are set up for the week. If possible, the client sets up the meds while we supervise. Some clients take injections such as Risperdal but are not able to reliably go to the clinic every couple of weeks to get the shot. so, we come to the home and give them the injection.
Med teaching and monitoring of the clients' condition are all very important pieces also. We are the eyes and ears of the docs (and social workers) in many ways. Also, we can help clients with support and strategies if they are going through some kind of crisis.
Quite a few patients need a PCA or Home Health Aide part time to help them, as they cannot manage independent living without that support. Supervising the aides is part of what we do.
Many clients have physical things going on such as diabetes or impaired mobility and we help them manage those as well, in the same way that any home health care nurse would. At my company, the psych case managers do not take clients with ventilators or highly complex medical care-those clients are followed by the medical case manager nurses.
In my area there are day treatment programs where the clients can go and attend groups and socialize with other people. I believe that social workers often help with hooking patients up with these-I dont know much about that piece yet.
Hope this helps! Psych case management is a rewarding field-we help keep patients out of the hospital and are an important part of their support.