What sets rehabilitation nursing apart from other nursing careers?

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Encompass Health Nurse Karen Delosa works with a patient.
Encompass Health Nurse Karen Delosa works with a patient.

When most people think of nursing, what do they think of? A fast-paced ER scene like something out of Grey’s Anatomy? A unit on the NICU with nurses tending to pre-mature babies being housed in incubators? Or maybe even a nurse in an operating room, handing equipment to a surgeon. How about a nurse cheering as their favorite patient is being discharged after a two-week stay? Or the image of a nurse consoling a patient as they grieve over the life they once knew? The truth is that nursing comes in many different forms, but at the end of the day, the goal remains the same. So what makes rehabilitation nursing different?   

What is rehabilitation nursing?  

At Encompass Health, rehabilitation nursing means going beyond the typical duties of a nurse. Our nurses are tasked with taking the time to understand the emotional needs of each patient so they may better understand the level of care needed. While patients are recovering from a variety of illnesses and conditions, rehabilitation nurses are with them every step of the way, day and night. As a rehabilitation nurse, it is not the goal to turnover patients as fast as possible, but to take the time to build a relationship with your patients and to help them come to terms with their new sense of normalcy. 

How is rehabilitation nursing different? 

It is true that most nurses are able to make connections with their patients, so you may still be wondering what makes rehabilitation nursing so unique. Rehabilitation nurses are not only concerned with the physical healing of their patients, but the emotional and spiritual healing of them as well. They recognize that many of their patients have been through traumatic events, and may not have the support of family and friends. Karen Delosa, nurse manager at Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of New England, got into rehabilitation nursing because of a family member who was affected and she saw first-hand the hard toll it can on a loved one. 

“It is a really hard thing to be OK and then to suddenly not be OK, so I hope to take that load off my patients” Delosa said. 

Another aspect of this specific type of nursing that makes it unique, is the fact that rehabilitation nursing can be a great fit for both those who are new to the field and also experienced RNs. Unlike some areas of nursing, rehabilitation nursing allows the ability for nurses to be exposed to a diverse group of patients with varying degrees of illnesses, conditions and disabilities. This level of exposure allows nurses to build on a variety of skills rather than just focusing a majority of time and attention on one. They are not seeing the same type of patients or injuries every day, which gives rehabilitation nurses the ability to have a refreshing perspective on patient care. 

“You never know what is going to come through the door. It is challenging, but challenging in a good way”, said Destiny Greene, a registered nurse at Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Petersburg. Greene said the most rewarding part of her job is being able to make a difference in the lives of her patients and give them hope for the future. 

Why choose rehabilitation nursing at Encompass Health?

Many nurses at Encompass Health enjoy the setting because of the collaborative team environment. They work with every team in the hospital from therapy to dietary or case management and also physicians to ensure that each patient receives the best care to fit their individual needs. At Encompass Health we also have strong Company values that resonate with employees because they fall in line with their own personal values. Our nurses set the standard for quality patient care by striving to improve its delivery and leading each patient interaction with empathy.         

If you are interested in learning more about nursing career opportunities at Encompass Health, we invite you to stay in touch with us by joining our talent community so we may send you additional communication about our Company. 

If you know you are interested in pursuing a career with Encompass Health, you can search for open opportunities near you.              

The content of this site is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical conditions or treatments.