Linda Evangelista, a “supermodel,” once stated that she did not get out of bed for less than $10,000 a day. Nurses and therapists who work for home health agencies, hospices and private duty agencies get out of bed for considerably less every day. Why do they do it? Becker’s Hospital Review reported on July 20, 2017, that nurses and therapists said the following about why they do what they do:
One nurse emphasized the importance of educating patients with chronic diseases about how to take care of themselves to prevent visits to emergency rooms and hospitalizations. She said that chronically ill patients really need someone to care about them and to point out to them what they should do differently because sometimes they just don’t know any better.
Another nurse pointed out that sometimes clinicians’ jobs are harder than those of office workers. This is especially true because clinicians may have worked hard to save a patient’s life without success. The failure sticks with practitioners and may manifest itself in a determination to work as hard as possible to help patients in the future.
A third nurse pointed out that nursing seems to have become a task-oriented profession. She said that nursing needs to be “re-humanized.” It’s important to stop performing tasks, make eye contact, smile, have a discussion and sit down when clinicians are talking to patients.
The importance of remaining calm regardless of the circumstances was important to the well-being of patients, according to another practitioner. No matter the situation, don’t let patients see you sweat. Clinicians can’t freak out and provide effective assistance to patients.
This aspect of providing quality of care may be especially difficult for practitioners who work in the home care industry. Control over the environment in which care is provided is impossible. Providers may be surprised and even shocked by what they encounter in patients’ homes. Flexibility, resilience, and the ability to act and think quickly seem to be keys to the provision of services in our industry.
Finally, a nurse reminded clinicians about the important of what they do:
“Every day you wake up and you get out of bed and you know you’re going to help at least ten people today…You could possibly be what stands between life and death for them. If that’s something you want to take on, it’s a calling you have to approach with the utmost respect and compassion.”
This may be the most important point! Nurses and therapists who work in the home care industry get out of bed every day because it’s a calling, not a job.
Nurses and therapists are the heart of the home care industry. In the midst of implementation of new regulations, attention to financial matters, the challenges of recruiting and retaining staff, a constant struggle to gain and maintain market share and everything else that home care providers must do, we cannot lose sight of this fact. We simply must treasure and cherish those who make it possible to provide quality of care to patients, despite the fact that they are paid far less than $10,000 a day.
(c)2018 Elizabeth Hogue, Esq, All rights reserved.
No Portion of this material may be reproduced in any form without the advance written permission of the author.