Do you have what it takes to be in long-term care? As most post-acute RNs and LPNs know, providing long-term care isn’t for everyone. It requires a certain skill set and temperament to be successful. Consider the following 5 traits all Travel Nurses in long-term care share:
Most long-term care patients are seniors. The care they need depends on their situation—they could be recovering from a stroke, an injury, or suffering from Alzheimer’s. Whatever their situation, you should remember that your patient may require more time to move around or process a conversation. That’s why great long-term care RNs and LPNs recognize the need for patience when caring for others.
Someone once said: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” It’s a good idea to keep these words in mind as you care for your post-acute patients. Ask yourself how you would want to be treated if you were in your patient’s shoes, and then act accordingly. And while many long-term care providers enjoy deep, meaningful relationships with their patients, you’ll need to manage the emotional stress that sometimes comes with this job. By its very nature, end-of-life care is different than acute care.
While it’s no secret that nursing is hard work, this is especially true in the long-term care setting. You’ll need the physical stamina to occasionally lift patients or to assist them with various daily activities. Then again, you or your patient may have a bad day. When that happens, take a deep breath and draw from your inner, mental strength to help you carry on.
When someone needs long-term care, they’ve lost a bit of their independence. This loss of independence can be difficult to deal with, so keep that in mind as you care for your patient. After all, he or she depends on you to help them live life with dignity and respect.
In the world of post-acute care, situations can change in the blink of an eye. For example, your patient who was on the mend may suddenly fall ill. As such, the ability to be flexible is key. The most successful long-term care providers can remain flexible and easily embrace change.