A Day in the Life of Certified Legal Nurse Consultant Jane Hurst – There’s No Such Thing as a Typical Day for a CLNC Consultant*
One of the best parts about being a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant is that my days are never the same. I enjoy the variety of my CLNC business and the ability to work when I want to.
I don’t have set office hours. It’s not because I’m a rebel – it’s because I have attorney-clients in different time zones. I may have to speak with an attorney at 5:00am or at 8:00pm, but that is where my flexibility comes in.
Because I live in a rural area, most of my attorney-clients are in other cities and states. I have clients who I’ve worked with for years who I have never met face-to-face.
I like to get up early. I’ll have my coffee on the patio while I check the emails that came in overnight. One of my attorney-clients is six hours ahead of me, so he starts his work day in the middle of my night.
I then move into my home office to start working on cases. I am so lucky to have an actual office in my home. Before we moved here, I worked at my dining room table. It worked out pretty well since we rarely used the dining room. I kept a tablecloth folded up on one of the chairs. If someone stopped by unexpectedly, I would do my “reverse tablecloth trick” and throw it over the medical records that were strewn on top of the table. I still take over the dining room table when I have a case with voluminous records, but thankfully it’s not my office desk anymore.
Most of the medical records I receive are sent to me electronically. The attorneys email them in pdf files or send a link to their internal network or a cloud server where I can access them for a certain period of time. I love using the next best thing, but there is one thing that I hold out on. I still like paper when reviewing medical records as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant. I like working with those 8½”x11″ pieces of pulp fiber. It’s not that I’m not capable of working with the records on my computer (Tom would be proud of me – I am set up with dual monitors). I have it set up so my cursor flows from one screen to the other seamlessly. I can highlight the important pieces of data on a page as well as any CLNC® consultant. I need to be able to sort, mark, highlight and otherwise fondle each page of the medical record. I guess it’s just the way my brain processes information.
Needless to say, I have large quantities of paper. I have a lot of boxes of medical records which I keep for five years after the cases settle or go to trial. I use Microsoft® Office calendar to enter two dates. I enter a date one month before the records can be destroyed and the actual destroy date. When the first date rolls around, I contact the attorney who handled the case. I let him know I am going to be purging the records and ask if there is any need to retain them. If the answer is no I destroy the records. Twice a year, I use a mobile shredding service. They come to my house and shred all of the documents I need destroyed. I look forward to shredding days. It clears out some space in the basement for a while.
Because I live in a rural area, most of my attorney-clients are in other cities and states. I have clients who I’ve worked with for years who I have never met face-to-face. Everything is handled remotely. Even the attorney-clients I have who are within driving distance, opt to mail or email the medical records. I Skype, speak with them on the phone or email to discuss cases.
As you can see, there is no such thing as a typical day as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant in a rural area, and that is exactly the way I like it!
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