A sub acute nurse is a registered nurse who specializes in providing care to long term patients that require 24 hour medical care and monitoring.
This may include treating patients who live in long term healthcare facilities, hospitals, nursing homes and special care housing facilities.
While sub acute care may take place within a hospital setting it is generally performed outside of a hospital, which helps free up needed space within the hospital and reduces medical costs significantly as a result.
The field of sub acute care is often considered a cross between acute care and long term care, since patients are often in a stable condition, but require long term nursing care.
Sub acute nurses care for patients who have recently gone through surgery, have suffered a severe or debilitating injury, are recovering from an illness, require respiratory care (breathing tubes and oxygen apparatuses), need enteral nutrition (feeding tubes) or blood transfusion care, require pain management treatment, require care for brain or spinal injuries and other types of care that require a patient to maintain a long term stay at a hospital or healthcare facility.
Sub acute nurses often work alongside a team of medical professionals who each provide a specialized type of care for the patient in order to ensure that the patient receives the best medical care possible.
This may include working with psychologists, physicians, LVN’/LPN’s, case management nurses and a variety of healthcare providers in order to ensure proper patient care.
In terms of daily responsibilities some of the standard duties of a sub acute nurse may include:
- Monitoring the patients health and recovery process
- Administering medications
- Dressing wounds
- Inserting IV’s
- Placing splints
- Managing casts
- Managing respiratory equipment
- Manage feeding tubes
- Assisting patients with daily physical activities
- Providing medical and healthcare advice to patients and families
- Assisting other medical professionals with patient related care
And many other tasks related to long term care.
Those who work as sub acute nurses must have a great deal of patience when dealing with individuals in need of long term medical care.
The ability to develop long lasting relationships is extremely important since nurses may spend a large amount of time caring for these individuals.
Nurses must also be comfortable with performing their duties when not assisted by other healthcare professionals as they may be required to work with a number of different patients in a single day and may not always be provide with additional assistance when helping patients with their recovery.
Having excellent organizational skills and the ability to multitask can be extremely beneficial as well and will make working as a sub acute nurse easier and allow sub acute nurses be more effective when operating at a hectic pace.