Nursing is a profession that calls to the strongest, most empathetic among us. These often-unsung professionals are the backbone of healthcare. If the last three years have shown us anything, it’s that without our country’s amazing nurses, the healthcare system as we know it would fall apart.
May is National Nurses Month and National Nurses Week is May 6th through May 12th, ending on Florence Nightingale’s birthday. Although we appreciate nurses every day, this is a special time to make sure we’re taking a moment to say thank you to the nurses in our lives and celebrate everything they do.
It takes a special person to become a nurse – and an extraordinary person to be a nurse to those receiving healthcare at home.
To start, let’s look at the qualities that make for a good nurse. The best nurses I’ve known have of course been caring and empathetic, but they’ve also had great communication and problem-solving skills, as well as a commitment to patient advocacy and a wonderful sense of humor.
After completing their education, nurses entering the profession will find a world of opportunities. You’ve probably heard that there has long been a big demand for qualified nurses. The pandemic has only intensified this. Those who begin a career as a home health or hospice nurse will enjoy many benefits, including:
- Job security: The demand for quality nurses is higher than ever. Those who choose this profession enjoy the financial and workplace security that comes with the position.
- Independence: Morning person? You can do that. Need to be sure to pick up the kids on time? You’re covered. You have a great deal of control over your schedule, as long as the work is done.
- Strong earning potential: Starting salaries for home health nurses are well above the overall national average, and with experience, there is potential to earn even more.
- Satisfaction of helping others: The feeling you get from making a difference in an individual’s life never gets old. Helping others is one of the most selfless, noble things a person can do.
- Rewarding relationships: Home health nurses spend lots of one-on-one time with their patients, building relationships that can last years as the individual ages and returns for care.
- Visible impact: Nurses working in healthcare at home can see the impact of their work firsthand, every day. They have a front-row seat as those they care for recover from illness or injury, regaining strength and health along the way.
Although the job has many benefits, it also comes with its own challenges. Among those that home health nurses must face are:
- Stress: It can sometimes be difficult to work with challenging patients and their families. Nurses often have to maintain composure in these situations, as well as continue to think critically in stressful situations.
- Emotional strain: Some patients are in especially poor health or frail conditions and caring for them over a period of time can be emotionally taxing. It’s important for nurses to maintain personal outlets for their emotional and mental health.
- Physical demands: Staying on their feet and helping to move patients are activities common among nurses and can lead to foot and back concerns. Sturdy shoes and a good exercise and stretching routine can work wonders.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has added another dimension to the world of nursing. The risk of virus exposure has been top-of-mind since early 2020, but as we grew to know more about the disease, we also were able to put in place best practices for preventing transmission of the virus to help keep nurses – and our communities – safer.
Do you or a loved one need help at home? Email firstname.lastname@example.org now to learn how we can alleviate stress and provide individuals with the highest quality of life.