In growing field of nursing, home care offers many advantages

Nursing education and experience are in demand in the worlds of medicine, business, law, education and even other, nontraditional areas, such as the entertainment industry. Job markets fluctuate -- but nurses can always get jobs. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics tells us that registered nursing (RN) is among the top occupations in terms of job growth in the next few years. The RN workforce is expected to add 439,300 jobs by 2024, representing an increase of 16 percent.

While employers today are reluctant to hire full-time salaried employees, there still are many looking for nurses to work full-time with benefits, as well as part-time and per-diem. The demand for nurses in New Jersey far exceeds the number of nurses available to fill all of the positions.

For many within the nursing world the home care industry stands out as being particularly attractive. Home care appeals to those seeking full-time employment with benefits, as well as those interested in creating work schedules tailored to the needs of their families.

A world of opportunity exists for nurses with imagination and initiative in home care. The home care setting allows nurses to practice with autonomy, and to develop and express their individual style. The rewards are not just financial: Nurses who provide care for patients at home see the effect of their care over time, and frequently witness extraordinary changes in their patients. These experiences offer enormous validation for nurses and results for patients.

Management and supervisory positions in home care offer competitive salaries and an environment that is much less rigid than the typical hospital experience.

There is an especially pressing need for nurses with the skills to operate in the higher tech areas, including care of patients with tracheostomies or of patients who require ventilator support at home. Nurses with pediatric experience, who may want to focus on one patient or who may prioritize freedom in their schedules, also are in constant demand.

Home care has been my focus for almost 40 years and has presented an incredible array of experiences and indelible memories for me. I have had the honor of holding the hands of the sick and dying, allowing me to utilize my education, skills, empathy and effectiveness in a way that made a difference to the patient and family.

I have been part of a team that brought fragile babies home and participated in the day to day development of ever-changing plans of care based on nursing assessment and judgment. Sometimes we saw remarkable outcomes; other times, not. But our team always supported one another in an effort to provide the best possible care. Autonomy is practiced on a very high level in home care. It is both a blessing and a responsibility.

At our agency, Home & Hospital Medical Personnel in Verona, we are always seeking qualified nurses to join our team. Whether you're a seasoned nurse with years of experience, or a recent college graduate eager to create your own career, we encourage you to consider home care. If you have any questions, or would like to apply for a home care nursing position online,, we would love to hear from you.

-- Sheila O'Connell
R.N., C.C.M.
Home & Hospital Medical Personnel

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