A Day in the Life of An El Paso In-Home Nurse
An in-home nurse is a necessary and challenging profession. Like any health care provider, it requires a lot of training, technical knowledge, skill, but it also requires other qualities like compassion, patience, communication skills, and creativity. El Paso has a vulnerable population that requires these services and hundreds of in-home nurses make the journey every day to see their patients and do their part in maintaining the overall health of the community.
The training required to be an in-home nurse is usually quite extensive. These nurses usually need to have a solid foundational medical-surgical background. Usually, these nurses have a year or more of experience in acute care and work closely with physicians. They travel to a patient’s home to monitor a condition, provide basic care, administer medications or treatments, or provide basic physical therapy.
The Day Begins…
Today we will follow a nurse in her typical day. Our nurse for today begins her day by checking patient files and reviewing the patients she must visit. An in-home nurse will often visit several patients each day. They require their own transportation and are often working in the same area of town, though not always. A lot of it varies on where their patients reside and their needs. She drives up to the home and visits her first patient.
She begins by saying hello and making conversation. Maybe they talk about the weather or about important things going on in the news. This is part of making a patient feel comfortable and developing close relationships.
She might begin by taking vital signs and checking for pain or other types of discomfort. She will make the patient comfortable and ensure that everything looks good. This all depends on the patients need and particular condition. She will ask if the patient has been taking the medications and how they have been feeling. Any issues? Side effects? Problems?
The nurse will likely also interact with family members and get their perspective and feedback on how the patient has been doing. If the patient requires physical therapy, the nurse then guides the patient through the necessary movements, demonstrates the movements, and gives further instructions.
In-home nurses need to be independent since they are out there with patients alone. They are not disconnected from the patient’s overall medical care, however, they are at the center. They are the frontlines of their treatment and they communicate or take notes for the head physician on a regular basis.
The Need for Creativity
One largely discounted aspect of in-home nursing is the creativity needed to provide what is needed for the patient. In a hospital or clinic setting, a nurse has all the available tools and equipment that could possibly be needed. Working with patients at home means that nurses have to do with what is available to them. So if the patient needs to keep their feet elevated or need some minor wound care, a nurse must be able to think outside the box and provide these minor comforts in the best way possible.
There are many objectives of providing medical care at home. One of the main ones is that it helps patients remain independent. Independence can actually have a considerable impact on a patient’s health, as it helps them care for themselves and prevents a slip into depression. There is also a certain amount of comfort that comes with people staying in their own home while in recovery or treatment. They are surrounded by family members and in a familiar environment.
The Right Care For You
When having someone come to your home and treat your loved one or yourself, you want the best possible care. Someone that is not only qualified but is attentive and creative. At Desierto all of our nurses are highly-trained and experienced, but they are just the kind of people you want coming by your house.