melluransa: (Default)
I have a new job! Today was the end of my first week there all on my own. I started last week-- last Monday-- but that was training. I just followed around the current speech-language pathologist (SLP) there and kinda learned the ropes.

My job is for an established and respected private therapy clinic that has locations all over where I live. They are mainly for physical therapy, but are growing enough to include occupational therapy and speech therapy too. This clinic made a contract with a rural hospital so patients at the hospital could get rehabilitative therapy services. The hospital is too small to have their own therapy staff and therapy department, so this contract is very good for patients at the hospital to get rehabilitative therapy services. So my workplace is a hospital, the doctors and nurses and radiology team are all the hospital people. But my therapy coworkers are from the private clinic company, and my paycheck is from them too. It's a nice balance of hospital people and therapy people. Even though we technically work for different companies, the hospital and private clinic people work as a good team. :)

I'm actually at home already, because this rural hospital is in the town where I lived from 2002 to 2013. It's where I used to live! On that farm with my dogs Chester and Lucas, and where I got my first job and where I had to mow grass, and where I had my lovely country roads to bike and run on.


The lady who I replaced was the first SLP the clinic ever hired, and so far this position is the only SLP position. The fact that I'm the only SLP is a good and bad thing.

The good is that I have a lot of autonomy. My supervisors have a decent idea of what I do, but not exactly. I have a lot of power to change the way speech therapy is done, in shaping procedures and pushing for the speech/language side of things. I already have ideas on how to change things up for the best of the patients there. For one, I want it so that no more patients go under the radar and miss out on speech/language/cognitive/swallowing services and therapy that they could and should be getting but that no one has noticed.

Being the only SLP is a bad thing too. I don't have other "speechies" to be with. From a colleague point of view, I liked working in the schools because I had somewhat frequent contact with other SLPs in the school district. At the hospital....I am alone like a little island in the ocean. I at least have other therapy people, which is good. But none of them are speech people. There's no one to consult with about speech things. Additionally, I love other SLPs too and it would be neat to have a speech best friend or something. Oh well.

Working with patients is great! I haven't worked with the adult population for over a year, but it's all coming back! Everything I learned and practiced before is already back in full. All the techniques and approaches for helping the adult population are back as if I'd never stopped working with adults.

I love my patients already. I have 3 so far who I've seen a few times, and it's neat to get to know them. It's even neater to help them! One told me today that after implementing the swallowing strategies I told her about yesterday, she ate 3 meals without any difficulty with swallowing at all! And her anxiety about it went way down too. YAY. MAJOR YAY. I AM DOING GOOD IN THE WORLD.

I still don't know how to do a lot of procedural stuff like things related to notes and documentation (it's all weird wonky software but at least it's all digital medical records and not paper), and when and how often to see different people based on how insurance is still being billed (it's been explained to me twice and I still have no clue). I still get lost sometimes in the halls. I forget people's names. There's so many nurses and LPNs and CRNs that I just lose track.

I like this job so far. I even like that working for this clinic means I get a discount at a local gym. $10/month for gym membership. That's amazing! Sign me up. :)

I think I can stay here for quite a while. Plus, my family is in the area. This region is where I want to live, and this job is one I want! I'm so glad to have a job in a medical setting!

Now if only my state could process my stinking permanent SLP license application faster. Good grief. I don't feel like I'll ever get it back!
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melluransa: (Default)

March 2015


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