Hate driving and long commutes? You might not want to take a home health therapy job for this and other reasons.
You may have read our previous article where we bragged about how excellent a home health therapy job can be. But remember, every coin has two sides. So, here we expound on some of the cons of having a career in home health.
1. You are on road… all the time!
As a home health therapist, you are going to travel from one home to the next to see your patients. This includes bad weather days. The bottom line is that commuting is an essential part of the workday for a home health provider. You won’t have an office or clinic to sit down to take your lunch or do your paperwork. In fact, you’ll probably be eating lunch in your car and completing your paperwork at home. If you prefer to have a work destination with minimal travel time, then you may want to explore other healthcare settings.
2. You may not feel safe or comfortable.
This is a crucial deciding point between working in home health or not. Remember, home health therapists visit one home after another. You may end up in a not-so-good neighborhood. Or, you may not be comfortable with the patient’s family or friends visiting or living in the home when you arrive to provide your treatment session. You may not feel “safe” or “comfortable” from time to time. If simply reading about these types of situations makes you feel uncomfortable, then you are not going to be happy as a home health therapist.
3. You need to be highly organized and a pro at time management.
Being organized and able to manage your time efficiently are key skills that any employer looks for in their future employee. But, this is especially applicable in home health therapy.
One advantage of working in home health is you can be your own boss and set your own schedule. However, you will need to be able to manage your caseload in an organized and timely fashion. When working at a home health therapy job, your phone will be constantly ringing from patients, nurses, doctors, and more! And, yes, you need to either reply to those calls or get back to them with a timely, appropriate answer.
Plus, don’t forget that paperwork! You’ll need to stay on top of documentation. Once you start getting behind, it begins to pile up quickly. Hence, if your manager is already asking you to work on your time management skills in your current setting, you may want to give a second thought to working in home health.
4. You need to be clinically efficient.
When working in home health, you will need to be clinically savvy with confidence in your clinical skills and assessments. As a home health therapist, you will encounter situations where you will have to call 911 for an emergency. Or, you will need to promptly notify a physician regarding changes to the patient’s clinical presentation (altered mental status, lethargy, or changes in vital signs, oxygen saturation, etc.). Therefore, you need to be clinically efficient and cognizant of crucial changes in medical condition as well as when it is appropriate to refer to other disciplines.
There you have it… the disadvantages of working in home health. Consider the pros and cons described herein, and weigh your options. Who knows? Home health may be the perfect fit for you, enabling you to advance your career. Whatever you decide, we wish you luck!