So, who LOVES LTC?? I need inspiration!

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by NurseCard NurseCard, ADN (Guide) Guide Expert Nurse

Specializes in Med/Surge, Psych, LTC, Home Health. Has 13 years experience.

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wishinguponastarLPN

wishinguponastarLPN

Specializes in Rehab, LTC. 217 Posts

I noticed you have a Louisville Cardinal Avatar, are you from Louisville, KY? Just wondering because that is where I am and have worked in a few of the LTC facilities.

With that being said, I personally enjoy LTC. When I was was looking into becoming a nurse I always said "I never want to work in LTC. Having the same residents, passing the same pills, omg how boring!" Well let me tell you that it is not! There is always something going on and you really grow to love these people.

Not sure what the place is like where you are going but I have worked in a few place that I personally wouldn't put my worst enemy in. Those places usually pay really well, but you are going to work for that money. Staffing sucks and there are usually multiple falls, skin tears, wounds, ect. Even under those circumstances you come to love the residents.

I currently work for a really nice facility. The pay is a little less but it is worth the paycut. I am able to actually spend a little more time with the residents and really make sure we are meeting their needs.

The good thing about LTC is you can also get a routine down and it makes for a really nice shift. As an RN are you going to be on a cart or working as charge? Do they use CMT's (medicine tech)? Do you know how many residents you will have and how many nursing are on a unit and how many CNA's? These are all important things to know going into a facility. Good Luck!

NurseCard, ADN

Specializes in Med/Surge, Psych, LTC, Home Health. Has 13 years experience. 2 Articles; 2,847 Posts

Wishing: Unfortunately, all I know right now is that I'm going to be

working third shift. This particular facility, I already know, has had it's

share of problems. I'm trying to keep a very positive attitude. I work

for a large company and I do have the option of moving around.

And yes, I am from Louisville. =) The only facility in Louisville that I've

worked in is Central State Hospital.

The DNS did give me SOME idea about staffing ratios when I first

interviewed, but unfortunately I still feel a bit vague about that.

srimer

srimer

6 Posts

I am a DON in an LTC. I came from an acute care background, so I wasn't sure if I'd like it. I went back to acute care TWICE until I realized that I really enjoy long-term care. It's not like it used to be. The residents are much more acutely ill, so we do quite a bit of advanced nursing (all except for ventilators). My nurses enjoy the close relationships with the residents, and when we rehab someone home, they have a wonderful sense of accomplishment. Any job is what you make of it, so GOOD LUCK!!!

Ita

Ita

Has 39 years experience. 6 Posts

I left a surgical position at the hospital to go to LTC two and a half months ago. I was tired of the increasing "role distress," finding myself losing the joy in the profession, dreading my shift, overworked to the point of not caring anymore. Charting that the thing was done was more important than doing the thing well, or doing it at all. It was becoming harder to keep patients safe. I was feeling like a robot.

Going back to long term care has been an opportunity to rediscover the art of nursing. It's a chance to see the whole person and to realize that a fundamental aspect of nursing is to accompany another person in their journey with illness and disability, lending encouragement as well as technical skills. Sometimes it means just being there, thinking about that person and wanting the best for them. The details are everything, like drying between the toes or making sure the bed is locked in the down position or thinking of ways to help the person find meaning in their day. It's not a place for caregivers who lack emotional maturity.

Time management and prioritizing tasks are as important as ever. And charting requirements are ever present. But LTC requires that the caregiver likes people, is willing to communicate and has a generous spirit. LTC gives the caregiver a chance to demonstrate the belief that maintaining the health of frail, chronically ill, sometimes demented human beings is important work. Frankly it is a chance to develop that kind of unconditional love that makes us better human beings. Google the EDEN PHILOSOPHY of elder care if you really want to be inspired about LTC.

Now I am nice and busy at work, look forward to my shifts, sleep better, have more energy when I'm off for the rest of my life and I feel more human somehow. Do I like mastering some of the more technical nursing skills used at higher levels of care? Yes. Do I want to advance somehow in my profession? Yes. I can still find ways to do that. After all we have the internet.

sheilamarie

sheilamarie

14 Posts

NurseCard,

I enjoyed working in LTC, I worked with a good team of CNAs and Nurses as well. The most Rewarding for me was when a family member came up to me and had asked "who took care of mom/dad today?" And my reply would be so & so did, and the look of appreciation, happiness that the family member had for the individual that took the extra time to make the family member look nice, was a "PRICELSS" reward. And that to me makes it all worthwhile, and there is no amount of monies that can match the gratitude felt from w/n you as a nurse, knowing you have a good team of cna's and they go above and beyond when doing pt. care.

Granted you get really attached to that particular pt/resident and when the time comes where they pass away, it is hard as hell, BUT too you have to remember if they are critically ill and are in severe pain and suffering, it is only the right thing to do is to allow them to pass on and be in piece. If the family is there w/their loved one I have cried with them, and there is nothing wrong w/that, we are human too and have feelings just like the family.

I truly love working in LTC and it does have its ups and downs, but I understand if a pt/resident wants to die, not to pro-long suffering & pain. Put yourself if there position if you will.

Best of Luck to you NurseCard, hope all goes well for you! :nurse:

Nurse Mentor Nancy

Nurse Mentor Nancy, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in Geriatric Assessment, management and leadership. Has 47 years experience. 44 Posts

I agree that one of the rewards of working in a LTF is the long term relationships with residents and their families. There are other advantages, too. Although CNAs often do much of the hands on care, depending on the facility and shift, LTC nurses have opportunities to be closer to the bedside. As a manager, I don't have to just sit at my desk doing paperwork. I can do everything my staff does. I can mentor my staff to be the best nurses and CNAs they can be. I love the independence and challenges of LTC nursing. Physicians visit only every two months so we nurses are in charge. We must be able to catch changes in residents' conditions quickly and take action. When we save a life using our assessment skills and critical thinking, see a resident go home because of our excellent rehab or have a family thank us for helping their loved one die in comfort and with dignity, we are rewarded beyond words. As one of my staff told me the other day, "This is what nursing is really about!"

Edited by Nurse Mentor Nancy

tarasmith

tarasmith

3 Posts

Hi there, I am an RN and have been working since1995 here in Ontario Canada. Great pay job, can't complain as it is competitive with all the other union paying hospital jobs in the area. I sincerely love LTC. It's a different kind of busy as opposed to the hosptial setting. I love the relationships that you build with the residents who live at the facility I work at. There have been a few times where I have wanted to quit or apply for another job, which I have and tried but I have never left. The reasons were for poor management and a low moral at my workplace, not because I got tired of the work as it is all 3 shifts that I work, mostly nights with the odd day shift. I too pray for the Lord to show me the way when I am stressed out at work, or when I thinkIshould be doing something else. I have just started another part time job doing Foot care for a 234 bed home as I just finished back in the spring completing my basic and advanced foot care for RN' s.

All I can say it that you just need to give it a try and see if it's for you. Hope this helps..Tara

danigrl034

danigrl034

5 Posts

I love my LTC job. Where I work I take care of personal care and independent living. I hate that people- including in our field- think that it's not skill oriented. I do on the spot assessments, emergent care, education and training, and have been part of numerous codes. I also am grateful to be able to form relationships with families and residents. It's not uncommon to take care ofa 100 yr old independent resident @ my community! Because we have less turn over than hospitals and other facilities my staff is top notch and best of all- for the most part I'm my own boss. What else can you hope for in a job? Ok... weekends and holidays off but that's asking for a miracle in healthcare! :)

dtroia22

dtroia22

8 Posts

I am so happy to finally see a positive thread on LTC! I love LTC because 1) my residents, 2) my residents, and 3) my residents! They and their families have become a sort of extended family! My kids love visiting my residents on my days off! Even though you get attached, and we all know their time is limited, it is so rewarding to know that I have helped to make their last years as bright and as happy as possible!

lpncal

lpncal

Specializes in LTC, Med-Surg, Home Health. Has 7 years experience. 10 Posts

i just got a job as well, working in ltc. i worked in another facility as an lpn and didn't think i would like it. mainly that was because my mom was an rn in a nursing home, and i would go visit her as a child and saw all the "zombiefied" people walking around, or in wheelchairs and it burned that image into my head. after moving here, ltc were the only jobs around for lpn's so i took it. it was a really nice facility, and that made a lot of difference. once i got to know the residents, the job became much more fun. its all about building relationships with the residents. to me, ltc is good because there isn't as much stress as hospital work, yet you don't totally lose your skills either. i've yet to start the new job....waiting on the background check, but i'm hoping its as rewarding as it was when i was an lpn.

patriece1991

patriece1991

8 Posts

I have been a CNA since I was a senior in high school (I am now a senior in nursing school!) While a CNA isn't the prettiest job...I really enjoyed it! I worked in a nursing home. I loved taking care of the residents there and really being able to bond with them and form relationships. Every person in there felt like my grandma and grandpa. : )

I am not sure what specialty I am most interested in....But, if I ended up in LTC one day, at a good facility...I would not be bothered by it! I know everyone isn't the same. My fiance (also in nursing school) thinks I am crazy for liking LTC...and I dont think any of my nursing friends would feel the same way! Ha. It takes a special kind of person for this specialty. I hope that God blesses you in your job and I hope that you really enjoy it! : )