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Home Care Nursing

Photo: Home Care Nursing
Home care nurses work with patients in their home providing long term care or follow up care after a surgery, injury or illness.

Home care allows patients to maintain their independence and remain closer to family; it also means that care can be tailored to the patients’ specific needs.

Home care services are offered by private agencies, hospitals and government bodies which provide nurses a range of possible employment arrangements. Nurses may work as a live-in carer, residing in the patients home during the duration of care, or live-out, attending to the patient when needed or on a set schedule. Home care nurses may also work casually, providing assistance to families needing respite or holiday care.

Home care nurses may work with a range of patients including aged care, disability and those who have recently undergone a treatment or suffered an illness.
Nurses working with a home care service may be required to undertake a range of tasks including but not limited to:
  • Pain management
  • Post-operative recovery
  • Wound care
  • Medication management
  • Continence management

In additional to clinical skills home care nurses must be independent, patient, flexible and have strong interpersonal skills.

Education
Registered nurses, enrolled nurses and personal carers may work in home care settings however level of care provided will differ. Registered nurses and Endorsed Enrolled Nurses will be able to assist with more complex cases and cases involving the provision of medication. Personal Carers will work with lower dependency patients, often the elderly or disabled.

Registered Nurses must be registered with APHRA and will have completed a tertiary qualification such as a Bachelor of Nursing. Enrolled Nurses gain qualification through a Diploma of Nursing course.

Personal carers can obtain qualification through a Certificate III in Aged Care/ Community Care/ Disability Studies or equivalent.  Additional Certificates in First Aid and Manual Handling may also be required.

Salary
Registered nurses typically earn between $53,000 and $85,000 depending on location and experience. Enrolled nurses working in home care earn approximately $49,000 and $60,000 and Personal Carers may earn approximately $40,000 - $50,000.

Click here for more information about nurse salaries in Australia.

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