Certified home health nurses help provide rehabilitation, surgical follow-up procedures, and long-term care for patients who have been discharged from hospitals and are recuperating under direct supervision. Home health nurses work in a range of settings, including short-term ambulatory recovery centers, clinics and physician's offices, and long-term nursing homes.
Those entering a nursing career should be caring, responsible individuals with physical aptitude and solid emotional well-being. They may be required to work long hours, under stress, or in emotionally trying conditions.
Growth in Home Health Nursing Careers Predicted
The Department of Labor predicts a 39 percent increase in jobs for home health nurses. Nurses who have training in complex procedures are needed in this career sector as more and more elderly patients are discharged early from hospitals.
Career home health nursing training is available at community colleges, medical trade schools, vocational colleges, and at nursing care facilities. Home health nurses that work in facilities that receive federal reimbursements from Medicare are required to pass a competency exam. Requirements in some states may include licensing. Career candidates may be required to pass background checks, take CPR classes, and undergo medical tests for tuberculosis and other diseases.
Nursing aids who work in nursing care facilities are required to undertake 75 hours of state-approved coursework leading to a certified nurse assistant (CNA) designation. Nursing class work may include training in taking and recording vital signs, administering medications, assisting patients in and out of beds, changing dressings, and providing therapeutic massage.
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