Ordering a Private Duty Nurse or Companion

This information describes the role of a private duty nurse or companion and explains how you arrange for one at Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK).

You may want to learn more about having a private duty nurse or companion. Sometimes, your doctor may recommend it. Other times, your family will want one for you. Patients and families tend to want this special attention if:

  • You have had a big surgery or procedure.
  • You are confused at times. This can happen from some medications.
  • You are at risk for falling.

Who are the private duty nurses or companions?

Registered nurses are called RNs. Companions are nursing aides. Both provide private duty services.

Private duty nurses at MSK are RNs who are licensed to practice nursing in New York State. They will provide all of your nursing care. They give medications and treatments and change dressings. They will report your progress to your doctor and primary nurse.

Companions have completed a Nursing Health Training Program. They assist patients in activities of daily living. These include bathing, changing your linen, and helping during meals.

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How do I arrange to have continued care for myself or my loved one?

You may continue the service by telling the person to come until further notice. You must inform the Private Duty Office by calling 212-639-6895 that you have done so. You may also call the Private Duty Office and request that the service be continued. If there is a break and you wish to resume service, you must authorize it with your signature.

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