The field of nursing has evolved immeasurably in the last few years and nursing home directors are having more of a role. Likewise, the expectations associated with many of its core positions have evolved, too. The Director of Nursing (DON) position is undoubtedly true, which has seen as much growth as it has changed.
Nursing Home Directors Take Charge
As the demand for DONs increases, so makes the list of job responsibilities it entails. It prompts the question — what is the role of the Director of Nursing in a nursing home? Does the nursing home director’s responsibility include recruiting in addition to caregiving and scheduling? Indeed, DONs must wear many hats in the nursing home environment. Consider the following four components of the DON position.
One of the most critical roles a DON must play is that of an educator. DONs are responsible for training new hires and ensuring that all staff is aware of proper procedures. To fulfill this role, the DON may develop training materials, host training sessions, and supervise new hires while they learn the ins and outs of the job. Ultimately, the DON must take responsibility for the learning of other clinicians on staff, which often includes non-nursing employees.
In addition to training employees, a DON may have to find them, too. It is increasingly common for the tasks traditionally handled by HR to be outsourced to the DON. It includes recruiting, some components of training, and general onboarding. In the recruiter role, a DON may need to post job ads, interview candidates, and seek out new hires through other avenues, too. Overseeing recruiting can give a DON the ability to ensure that they hire high-quality candidates, but this can still be an overwhelming responsibility to take on.
Of course, one of the traditional responsibilities of the DON is their role as a supervisor. The DON must oversee the work of the nursing home staff, monitor the performance of nurses and caregivers, and make any corrections that may be necessary. As a supervisor, the DON is also responsible for scheduling staff and communicating between departments. To do so, they must identify the central needs of the nursing home and coordinate care that will satisfy these needs.
The original responsibility of the DON is nursing. Though most nurses who take on the DON role have moved past clinical duties, the DON must still accept nursing responsibilities when necessary. Given the nationwide shortage of nurses, this is becoming increasingly common. DONs should review nursing home risk management protocol and ensure that their staffing meets state minimum requirements. Even if a DON is available to fill in as a bedside nurse in a nursing home, it’s preferable to have additional staff available.
About Connected Risk Solutions
At Connected Risk Solutions, we use our expertise and experience to provide insurance information and programs to those who serve long-term care and senior living facilities. Since 2007, we’ve been offering insurance and risk management plans designed to help our agents give their clients the ability to achieve continued growth while simultaneously protecting against loss, containing costs and increasing profitability. With three offices to serve you in Chicago, Illinois; Phoenix, Arizona; and Burlington, Connecticut, we do everything we can to make your experience with us as professional and transparent as possible. To learn more, contact us at (877) 890-9301.