MedPro Blog

home health

How to be a Successful Home Health Nurse

If you work in home health, you know the numerous benefits there are to working in this profession. These benefits include more flexibility and the ability to form closer relationships with patients. This is great for a nurse who really treasures the relationships they have with their patients.

There are some great skills and qualities that nurses can learn and hone in on in order to make them an even more successful home health aide. Here are five of the of top skills and qualities:

1. Great communication
Communication is a very important skill when it comes to working as a home health travel nurse. You need to be sure to listen to both instructions from the doctor and to anything the patient is saying to you. They might be telling you about how a medication is making them feel, how symptoms are getting better or worse, or they may just want to confide in your about something personal.

2. Be alert at all times
It is very important to remain alert and attentive while working in a home health setting. You are there to help your patient feel comfortable and relieve the care they need, and they may need help carrying out day to day activities. Do not get distracted by being on your phone or doing other tasks when you should be paying close attention to your patient. They could easily fall or get hurt, and they also may need help remembering or being administered medication. This takes your full attention!

3. Flexibility is key
One of the most important skills to have is flexibility. You need to remember that you do not only keep track of your patient’s health, but also with their daily activities. This can include bathing, feeding, dressing clients as well as helping with light housekeeping, laundry, and meal preparation. Always be open and flexible about what kind of tasks you might have to help clients with during your shift.

4. Be patient
You may notice that some days, or some patients, are more challenging than others. You may feel stouthearted or overwhelmed, but you have to remember that part of your job is to care about the emotional well-being of your patients as well. You might have a patient that is dealing with more pain or more emotional trauma than another, and may cause them to behave differently. Always try to remain patient with each person and their unique situation.

5. Empathy goes a long way
If you are ever unsure of how to handle a situation, try and think about how you would feel if you were in your patient’s shoes. Are they having a more emotional day? Are they in more pain than usual? Are they dealing with a personal issue in their life? Life events, pain, and other factors can cause patients to behave differently. One day they may be very quiet and not want to talk, and instead of taking it personally, you should try and to give them space and imagine how you would like to be treated if you were dealing with something challenging in your life as well.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that about 4.9 million patients received home health care in 2013. According to Hofstra University, home health care nursing was on the rise in 2017 and is on the path for continued growth in 2018 due to Medicare disbursements and population growth.

Looking for your next travel nurse job?

If you’re wondering how to find a travel nurse job, it’s a snap when you work with a travel RN recruiter like MedPro Healthcare Staffing. The experts at MedPro will help you find placements in the best cities for travel nurses. And because we want each assignment to be your best yet, we offer the MedPro Experience program—a personalized employee experience program that embraces and celebrates you! To learn more and begin your travel nurse career, contact us today at 1-800-866-8108, or apply here.