Hospice nurses are registered nurses (RNs) who specialize in providing end-of-life care for terminally ill patients. They often visit patients in private homes to monitor their health status and check that they have access to and are taking prescribed medications on schedule. They are responsible for reporting to the patient’s doctor on any changes in the patient’s health situation. In addition to caring for the patient directly they advise family members on how to care for the patient and keep the patient as comfortable and pain-free as possible. Some hospice nurses visit patients that are in residential centers and nursing homes or in hospice centers that care for terminally ill patients. Hospice nurses must be compassionate and willing to comfort grieving family members. Hospices nurses must first earn an associate’s degree but preferably bachelor’s degree in nursing from an accredited institution and they must pass an exam administered by the National Council Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses. The website httpeducation-portal.com says that those interested in becoming hospice nurses must have some experience in the field and then earn certification from the National Board for Certification of Hospice and Palliative Nurses which is good for four years before it must be renewed. Many hospice nurses go on to earn a master’s degree in hospice and palliative care nursing which entails taking courses such as medical ethics geriatrics and psychology. According to the website www.ehow.com hospice nurses earn an average annual salary of approximately $57300.
|Education Required:||Associate's Degree|
|Tasks:||Provides care for critically ill patients.
Communicates compassionately with patients' family members.
Ensures that patients are comfortable.
Maintains strong emotional composure at all times.
|Also Called:||Registered Nurse
Advanced Practice Nurse
End of Life Caregiver