When a patient opts for home healthcare services, there are a lot of expectations. A home care nurse has to be with the patient and prove helpful to his/her full potential. While subjectively speaking, the nurse is responsible for almost everything with respect to the patient, here’s a more definite description of the roles and responsibilities of a home care nurse.
Assessment and Observation
The primary responsibility of a home care is to observe the health condition of the patient from time to time. A nurse does not himself/herself give the treatment or design the treatment for the patient. That is done by the doctor or physician of the patient. The nurse knows the treatment that the patient is receiving, monitors the response of the patient to the treatment, and reports the observations to the physician.
The nurse is supposed to administer the medicines and take care of the doses as directed by the physician. The nurse can’t decide what medicines are to be given. However, with the approval of the physician, the nurse can change the doses of the medication as required by the patient’s condition.
Reporting to the family
The homecare nurse is also expected to brief the family about the health conditions and the progress the patient makes. The nurse is the point of contact between the patient and the family. It is very important to let the family of the patient know of the patient’s progress.
Besides medicinal treatment, what a patient really needs when sick is companionship. The homecare nurse should make the patient feel comfortable and warm. The mental state of the patient is as important as his/her physical state. Any feelings, like depression, aloofness, or mood related troubles should be observed and taken care of. The nurse is supposed to motivate the patient and tell him he will recover.
Assistance with daily routine
The patient is supposed to be given the kind of independence he or she wants. But, there are patients who can’t really get their daily work done. Especially, when the patients are elderly people, they need help with tasks. Tasks, like bathing, having food, walking, sitting, getting dress, and hygiene related concerns need to be taken care of by the nurse as well.
Being a home healthcare nurse comes with a number of responsibilities. The quality of empathy is one natural quality that the nurse should posses in order to be able to help unconditionally.