Home Care Nurse

More than 1.3 million seniors live in nursing homes and other care facilities across the United States. While many of them provide great service, you really have to pay well for quality care these days. It’s understandable to feel apprehensive about giving someone else the responsibility to care for your parents. The last thing you want is for them to be mistreated in their final years.

In this context, home care nurses are a great compromise. You get the benefit of having someone share the responsibility of senior care. However, you also have direct oversight and the mental peace that comes from knowing that your parents are being well looked after. 

In this article let us look at three key qualities that ensure you and your senior parents are very satisfied with your home care nurse. 

1. The Right Qualifications

Caring for a senior isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Older people have a number of unique needs that warrant special attention. Home care nurses, as the title itself implies complete a degree in nursing. This ensures that they are familiar with fundamental nursing principles and the process of offering basic medical help. 

Depending on your state, home care nurses may also need a valid state license to practice legally. This, of course, means that they should have passed the NCLEX. Certifications such as CNA or LPA are also a must because they show that the nurse has expertise and competence in providing direct patient care. 

If either of your parents suffers from chronic conditions, then try to look for a home care nurse who is equipped to handle such individuals. According to Rockhurst University, these conditions include hypertension, osteoarthritis, and cardiovascular disease, among others. 

Hiring an adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner makes a lot of sense in this context. They are specifically trained to help care for people with acute conditions who need close supervision and care. These nurses are ideal if your parents have just been discharged from a hospital, but they still need a lot of care and attention. 

2. A Compatible Personality 

Having the right qualifications is an important aspect for any home care nurse. However, it would all be for nothing if they weren’t a good fit for you and your parents. Like it or not, personality and attitude are important factors that you need to consider. 

There’s no point in having the most qualified home care nurse if your parents don’t like them. Older people can sometimes be a little fussy, and some nurses may not exactly respond in an ideal way. Some of them take on a weird, almost school-teacher-like personality and treat seniors like children. 

They talk to them like they don’t understand what’s happening, and this type of attitude naturally frustrates a lot of seniors. Thus, it might even be worth hiring the home nurse on a sort of trial basis to see if they are a good fit for your parents. 

3. Communication Skills

Similar to the previous point, but quite different, communication skills are as important as professional credentials. Think about it. You are entrusting someone to care for your parents, who may be in a vulnerable state. Qualities like active listening, simple language, clarity, and empathy are going to be critical when caring for seniors. 

Moreover, it’s not just your parents that the home care nurse will be talking to. They will also be updating you if you live away from your parents. You want to hire a home care nurse who knows how to communicate accurately, without exaggerating or downplaying anything.

If you are concerned about your parents and the home care nurse is dismissive or doesn’t provide accurate information in time, that isn’t acceptable. Similarly, if they confuse or constantly use medical jargon, it makes communication confusing and frustrating. 

Remember, you are hiring a home care nurse for your parents to make life easier. If it’s going to take additional effort to deal with the nurse, then that’s a problem that needs to be addressed. 

In conclusion, caring for your parents is a big responsibility that is tough to handle on your own. There’s no shame in reaching out and getting the help you need. After all, both you and your parents benefit from having someone in the home with nursing experience.

However, as we have seen in this article, there are certain aspects that you want to keep an eye on when hiring a home care nurse. Hiring someone with the right qualifications, personality, and communication skills will ensure you and your parents aren’t going to be disappointed.