A home health care primary nurse is a professional who helps coordinate and direct a home care patient’s care. These men and women are responsible for independent management in the home health population, which requires strong advanced assessment skills, teaching and decision-making skills.
Depending on the skills required for care in your home, your family member may be assigned a home health care nurse, home health care aide or companion. Nurses are responsible for medical care and treatment, and the responsibilities they have vary widely depending upon the situation they find themselves in. Most home health care aides and companions will work under the supervision of a home health care nurse, who often meets with the patients shortly after starting home care and also checks in with the patient and their family on occasion to ensure they are receiving quality care.
When patients require a higher level of care, such as dressing changes, IV medication administration or ventilator support, your family member may be under the direct care of a home health care nurse. People of all ages with a variety of conditions require home health nursing, such as those who suffer from congestive heart failure, cystic fibrosis, spinal cord injuries, stroke or dementia, to name just a few.
To practice as a home care nurse, your provider will need a bachelor’s degree from an accredited school of nursing and have taken and passed their board certifications. While obtaining a degree, nurses often take science classes such as anatomy, biology, physiology and chemistry along with liberal arts courses. Programs also include psychology, leadership, statistics and communication as well as clinical rotations in a variety of settings.
The expectation of a board certified nurse is their ability to assess the mental and physical needs of their patients, carry out the care required to keep their patients stable and at home, and collaborate with other providers on the care team. While their role is independent and one on one with your family member, they are part of a larger team caring for your loved one.
Once hired, a home care nurse will conduct an initial physical assessment and evaluate the environment as well, looking for anything that might impede your family members mobility or recovery. Nurses are also responsible for educating patients and other caregivers about procedures, pain management and nutrition. They will provide support, feedback and communicate with your family members primary care provider.
A home care nurse generally works independently, but also collaborates with the rest of the care team, including the family members. While they are a necessary part of helping your loved one stay at home, they are a guest in your home and should respect your family’s relationships, food preferences and standard of living. The bottom line is home care nursing attracts professionals who enjoy working independently, while networking within the community to help their patients remain stable and living at home.
Are You Ready for Nursing Care for Your Loved One?
It is difficult to relinquish care of your loved one to someone you don’t know. However, to avoid burnout or reduce overwhelming stress, it may be necessary. This is where we excel. At Anodyne, we’ll help you find the right caregiver for your family member to ensure they are healthy and well cared for. Call us today! We are excited about the possibilities for you and family.