There is a high demand for home health nurses in several areas of the United States. Home healthcare nurses offer basic nursing services in the community and home setting. If you enjoy taking care of people and working independently, then you should consider becoming a home health nurse.
Educational Requirements for Home Health Nursing
Becoming a home healthcare nurse requires that you earn an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. Once you have earned your degree, you will need to sit for the NCLEX-RN test. Once this is complete, you can then use the honorable title of “RN” for registered nurse. Entry into both the 2 year Associate’s program and the 4 year Bachelor’s program require good grades in high school and college courses. Many nursing schools now require a successful score on the TEAS test.
Home Health Nurse Certification
TheHome Health Nurses Association(HHNA) offers educational resources for nurses in this profession, and they are actively working on a certification program for home health nurses. At present, no professional agency offers certification for home health nursing, as the ANCC retired that credential.
Home Health Nursing Career Opportunities and Salaries
When working as a home health nurse, you will go to the patient’s home and take care of them in that setting. You will provide them with hands on care and help them with daily tasks, such as bathing, feeding, and dressing. Home healthcare nurses help keep the patient in their home and prevent them from having to drive to and from the doctor’s office. These professionals find work with private organizations and agencies, as well as the health department and state directed programs.
The average salary for a home health nurse ranges from $49,000 to $77,000 per year, according to most web sources. This amount of annual pay will vary based on where you are located, your experience as a professional nurse, your degree level, and also your years of practice.
Job Duties of the Home Health Nurse
There are a rising number of elderly people in the U.S., and with this growing number, there comes a need for home healthcare providers. Many older people like their independence, and they do not want to be placed in a nursing home or an assisted living facility. Families also want to respect the wishes of their loved ones and try to keep them in their home. Some of the job duties that home health nurses perform include:
- Administering of medications
- Educating the family and patient
- Assuring a safe living environment
- Transporting the patient to and from the doctor and other places
- Helping the patient with activities of daily living
ANCC (2013): http://www.nursecredentialing.org/HomeHealthNursing
HHNA (2013): http://www.hhna.org/