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What to expect


I'm going for an interview for a home health agency today. I am completely new to home health (i've done LTC, camp nursing & clinic nursing). I know that they said that each nurse is only assigned to one patient. This company provides services mostly to pediatric patients with trachs, vents & gtubes. I'm pretty excited about being able to use my skills to provide quality care instead of just slinging medications at them as quickly as I can.

What should I expect to be doing for these patients besides the regular nursing stuff? Will I also be doing assistance with ADLs like bathing? If the child is school-aged, will I be involved in that part of their life?

I'm also assuming that there may be a bit of downtime, which is ok, but I like to stay productive and busy. What types of things would I do in the downtime? Will/can I help out around the house? Can I read? Do activities with the patient if at all possible?

Try the private duty nursing forum as well. I'm sure there are members who read both but Home Health is intermittent services versus assigned to one patient for a shift.

Tell you what I know of specialized private duty nursing - very little downtime, maybe at night there is more. The cases I'm familiar with nurses were responsible for all ADL's, they help with homework if applicable, read, do ROM, reposition, assist with trips to MD offices, assist the PT/OT if they come into the home, take the child out of the home for walks when applicable... in other words, they are 100% responsible for everything when they are in the home. I know many nurses who have done some private duty and many of them really enjoy it. Good luck!