From the category archives:

Healthcare Workers

Tips for Dealing with Stress

by Howard Gerber on July 11, 2013

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yoga, relaxation It would be nice to have a world where going to work was always a great experience: co-workers were always eager to lend a helping hand, and patients smiled and said thank you. While that may happen some of the time, it’s unlikely that everyday working in healthcare is blissful. In fact, in can be very stressful. [continue reading…]

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Is Oncology Nursing Right for You?

by Howard Gerber on June 20, 2013

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Oncology nurses are usually RNs or nurse practitioners who specialize in working with cancer patients. Working as an oncology nurse can be extremely rewarding, but it also has its challenges. As with all specialty areas of nursing, it is essential to weigh the positives with the negatives in order to decide if oncology nursing is right for you. [continue reading…]

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Dealing with Homesickness on the Road

by Howard Gerber on May 16, 2013

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Starting a travel assignment is a great opportunity to meet new people, see a new part of the country and learn new skills. Although it is an exciting time, it’s normal to deal with some level of homesickness. This may especially be true if you are leaving children or a significant other behind. While you don’t want to forget family and friends back home, you don’t want homesickness to spoil your time. Consider some of the suggestions below to cope when you are missing home. [continue reading…]

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If you are planning on working as a healthcare traveler, you may be working the overnight shift, also known as the graveyard shift. Although physical, speech and occupations therapists will almost always work day shift, nurses are needed around the clock. Whether you will be new to working overnight or have been doing it for years, it can be a challenge to work through the night. [continue reading…]

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It’s normal to have a few fears when you start a new job or move to a new area to live. When you work as a nurse traveler, you combine both a new living environment and a new job. It’s no wonder you may be a little apprehensive. Keep in mind that everyone gets a little nervous starting a new travel assignment, especially if it is their first. Below are some suggestions for overcoming a few common fears nurse travelers may have.

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Starting out on the Right Foot in Nursing

by Howard Gerber on February 21, 2013

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If you’ve finally finished nursing school and started your new job, you may be wondering…what’s next? Launching a new career is one of the most exciting events in life, but it’s also nerve-wracking and overwhelming. You’ll find out pretty fast that no matter how hard you studied, you can never be 100% prepared for every situation. No school can teach every possible scenario…and no nurse can remember everything they learned right out of the gate. Take heart and don’t get discouraged. Here are some things to remember to make getting started easier.

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Home Health Care Nursing

by Howard Gerber on January 31, 2013

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Home Health Care Nursing

Nurses are unique individuals. Some love the high-stress, fast pace of a hospital or busy clinic, others like the individualized approach of a doctor’s office, and still others like the personal, one-on-one interactions best found in home healthcare. Would you be happy in such a position? Do you have the skills and the temperament?

Responsibility
One of the most important things to consider is the intense responsibility that home healthcare workers face. You’re the only one there to observe the patient and make a diagnosis. You can’t be there 24/7, so you might walk into any situation at any time; a patient who has forgotten to take his meds, who is in distress, who has had a reaction to a drug or treatment. Your assessment skills must be top rate, you don’t have the luxury of not knowing what to do, and above all, you can’t panic.

Triage Skills
When you do need support, you must be able to clearly describe the patient’s condition and recommend a course of action for approval. You’re not a doctor, but you’re there. On the spot. You know the patient, his condition, his medications, his vitals, and his wishes. You know how he reacts to care and to stress. The more concise information you can convey to a busy doctor, the better the outcome for the patient.

Decision Making
Can you act independently, make decisions, think fast on your feet? That’s the name of the game for home health workers. Today’s tools, like smartphones and tablets, make it much easier to collaborate with peers than in the past, but you’re still out there on your own most of the time. There’s nobody holding your hand or looking over your shoulder. You have to know what to do and be responsible enough to do it.

Social Skills
One thing a home health nurse should always be mindful of is personal boundaries. Even though you’re there to help, often every day, you are entering someone’s home. It’s important to remember that in order to respect your patient, you must allow them dignity and privacy. You may have to inform, educate, and even counsel family members, and carefully deal with family relationships. Families are never perfect, and long illnesses can be frustrating and strain family finances to the breaking point. Diplomacy is often your saving grace.

If this all sounds like you, home health care might be the perfect career choice. It’s personal, fiercely independent, challenging, and most definitely rewarding. You can build real relationships with patients and ensure that they get personal, consistent care.

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