Improving Patients’ Lives, One “C” at a Time
For Home Therapies RN, Bridget, the Fresenius Medical Care North America career journey has been an interesting one. Since her FMCNA beginning in 1996 as a PCT, to becoming the Home Therapy RN she is today, she has learned a lot. Bridget attributes a lot of her career success at FMCNA to what she calls the “three Cs”:
- Case Management
“Every home therapist needs to have these three,” she says.
With these skills and the support of Fresenius Medical Care, Bridget is making an impact every day in the lives of patients.
On Bridget’s first day in 1996 she recalls an RN telling her, “you’re either going to like dialysis or not. You’re never going to learn to like it.”
It turned out that Bridget loved it. So much so, that she later decided she wanted to become a nurse. With the financial and moral support of FMCNA, Bridget moved forward on her quest for success, enrolling in nursing school and eventually earning her associate’s degree. From there, Bridget kicked off her career in home therapy.
"I worked in-center as a staff nurse, and then from there I moved to home therapy as a staff nurse,” she says.
Since then, Bridget has gotten familiar with many aspects of what it takes to do great work in home therapy, taking on several roles within the department including program manager, area manager, director of operations and most recently, market manager.
Working just below the director of FMCNA’s home therapy department, Bridget is often busy. But that doesn’t stop her from continuing to find ways to grow in her career.
“Recently I went back to school, and Fresenius assisted me with that to get my BS in Nursing. I did that a year ago, and finished,” she says, adding, “Fresenius has pretty much raised me.”
When asked about her typical day, Bridget explains, “we get into work and make sure that we check emails upon arriving, because we have many reports. We also check the patient portal, which is a portal that our patients’ treatments will transfer to, and it allows us to have a bird’s eye view of what’s going on in the patient’s home. We also do weekly calls for the patient.
Home therapy is a case management type of nursing. It’s very different than in-center. Our patients are not here three times a week. We sometimes only see them twice a month, so it’s very important that we case manage these patients and that we call them and make contact frequently for retention and for support.”
The RNs conduct these calls once a week and do “motivational interviewing” where they ask open-ended questions in order to gather information and understand what’s going on with their patients, so that they can provide them with the very best care.
“We also provide education and support in all areas for the patient—from diet, to access to our social workers who help the patients with social problems or issues,” Bridget explains. “We schedule labs and review their medications. We have IBT meetings, where we review all high-risk patients. If there’s anything we can influence and identify early to prevent those patients from being discharged from home, we certainly want to do that.”
As a Home Therapies RN, there will be times where you will stress. Bridget can attest. But the good that comes from this important role outweighs that, tenfold.
For Bridget, making a difference in the lives of her patients is what she loves most about her career with FMCNA. She recalls some of her favorite patient stories, that stand out in her 21 years of Fresenius Medical Care experience. One highlight was a particular patient who Bridget provided dialysis education to.
“He was the provider of his household. He worked at a plant refinery, so he had really long hours and some late hours. He did shift work, so when he found out he had to be on dialysis he was very depressed and upset,” she recalls.
“He came and we sat and talked for a couple of hours, and I was just explaining everything about home therapy, and how dialysis doesn’t become your life, but rather a part of your life…how he can still work. This patient was one that I’ll always remember because I was given an opportunity to give him hope, and that’s very special.”
Do you think you have what it takes to become a part of the Fresenius Medical Care home therapies team? Explore our openings and join our team today!