Begin reviewing and replying to peer postings/responses early in the week to enhance peer discussion. See the rubric for participation points. Participate in the discussion by asking a question, providing a statement of clarification, providing viewpoints with a rationale, challenging aspects of the discussion, or indicating relationships between two or more lines of reasoning in the discussion. Always use constructive language, even in criticism, to work toward the goal of positive progress.
Nursing services play an important role in caring for patients and families in the community and providing them the support they need. For patients with problems ranging from chronic health conditions to need of elder care, nursing has proved itself an important part of the healthcare team. In fact, many people now prefer sending their elderly parents to a daycare for nursing, rather than to a long-term care facility.
For this topic, interview a community-based nurse or nurse practitioner who sees individuals in the home setting. Describe the nurse's responses to the following questions:
- What are your job responsibilities?
- Does a correlation exist between your job description and your practice?
- Are you involved in policy formulation that affects client services?
- Do you belong to a professional organization related to your current job position?
I was able to interview someone that I know and she works as the RN for a home health agency. She is responsible for taking referrals if they come through to the office while she is there, completing the assessment for services. During the assessments she averages out what the number of hours the person may need and then send that information to the insurance company. She also along with the business owner or program administrator completes the follow up contacts for the patients. They are completed either 30, 60 or 90 days. She also is in charge of any health related trainings that the staff would have to complete.
She believes that her job description and her actually practice go hand in hand. She feels that she does only what is called of her on most days. There are days she might help around the office just to lend a helping hand but does not feel pressured to do other people jobs at her agency.
When I asked about policy formulation she stated that she does help with only the medical policies that pertain to the client’s care. She does not currently belong to any professional organizations but she wants to look into membership in the future.
Being a home health nurse or nurse practitioner means that the individual that is suffering from an illness receives medical visits in the comfort of their home. “Home care involves a wide range of technical and supportive care for patients after discharge from the hospital, maintaining the health of the disabled people and the elderly at home, preventing unnecessary admission, and meeting the daily needs” (Fatemi, 2019, p. 119). For the purposes of this discussion, I chose to interview DG, a previous coworker that is now a Nurse Practitioner that makes visits to people’s homes. She has been a nurse for 10+ years and has just recently started working in the home health field in the last couple of years.
When asking about her job responsibilities, there were many different things she was responsible for when it came to her patients. Some of the main responsibilities that she had was communication between the doctor and any other person that was involved in the patients plan of care. This is the most important aspect of any job but especially caring for a patient int the home setting because of the time that they are not being monitored by medical personnel in person. Another important part of her responsibilities was to carry out standing order for both acute and chronically ill patients. Based off the data that she communicated to the doctor, orders were placed, and it was then her responsibility to carry out the ones within her scope of practice. Also, while visiting with these patients, she was to assess and detect any abnormal issues and once these were determined, begin early interventions to treat the adverse issue. Another major part of her duties was to educate on the disease process and the medications that are prescribed. Knowing what to expect from the disease process will give the family a feeling of comfort and also help them to know when a major change may occurring with the patient and when they should notify the appropriate staff member. Medication education is important because unlike when the patient is in the hospital, the patient may have to self-administer or maybe the family members will be administering them and with the appropriate education, they will know what side effects to look for and when the medication may be contraindicated. While DG is very passionate about her job and the patients she cares for, she is not involved in policy making processes nor does she belong to any professional organizations related to her current position. When she was asked about this, she did not have much to say about it and after further discussion she stated she would rather be at the bedside actively helping the patients rather than in the office making decisions on policies and not knowing how they were effecting the outcomes of patient care.
As you can see, being a home health Nurse Practitioner can be rewarding because of the difference you are able to make in the patients life from within the comfort of their home but it can also be a very busy depending on the patient load and the acuity of patients along with any unexpected changes that may occur amongst each individual patient.
Fatemi, N. L., Moonaghi, H. K., & Heydari, A. (2019). Perceived Challenges Faced by Nurses in Home Health Care Setting: A Qualitative Study. International Journal of Community Based Nursing & Midwifery, 7(2), 118–127.