Nursing is a profession that most of us are familiar with. Travel nursing is an exciting spin in the world of nursing. A travel nurse is a nurse that travels from one destination to another providing care for their assigned patients.
Oftentimes, hospitals and facilities may find themselves short-staffed and in need of nurses quickly. These staffing shortages may occur due to seasonal patient increases, vacation requests or even maternity leave by permanent nurses at a particular facility.
These shortages can occur anywhere and at any time and this is where a travel nurse steps in. A nursing staffing agency with which you’ve previously applied is contacted and then they supply the necessary nursing man (or woman) to save the day!
Travel nurses are able to come in and fill the gap left by any permanent nursing staff member and help mitigate the needs of that hospital or healthcare facility.
So what does travel nursing all entail and how does it work? Well, that’s what I aim to show you. Read on below and you will get a full-fledged description of what travel nursing is as well as how it works!
HOW DOES IT WORK?
To become a travel nurse, you’ll first need to complete an accredited registered nursing program and possibly have one year of relevant experience under your belt.
Now you can shop around for a suitable travel nursing agency, present the required documentation such as proof of license, references and then apply!
Once you’re taken on by the agency (congrats!) you’ll then be assigned a recruiter. You’ll share with your recruiter what location you’d like to be assigned, the type of nursing you’re qualified for and they will do their best to get you set up in your ideal location while guiding you through the rest of the process.
Once your recruiter finds a suitable assignment location for you, it’s up to you to hit a home run with the interview with the healthcare facility.
So you’ve been hired and you’re excited! What can you expect? Your first concern may be “Where am I going to live?” and with a constant change of scenery, you’ll be left with little time to house hunt.
Not to worry! Nursing agencies will take care of that for you prior to your start date. You also have the options to find your own place if you so choose with some staffing agencies providing a housing allowance.
WHAT WILL I LIKE ABOUT IT?
What else can you expect? Well, as a travel nurse, the varying of assignments in different locations are a definite selling point of the profession. This is not just for the sake of seeing different parts of the world but for different experiences as well. You’ll be working in different facilities on a consistent basis and that will keep things exciting. The constant challenge to learn new things and equipment, as well as work with different people, will be a huge benefit and give you a professional acumen unlike any other.
Your travel nursing assignments can last anywhere from a couple days at a location to 13 weeks. Once your assignment at a particular location has ended, you may move on to a different facility or possibly have the option of renewing your contract at your current one.
IS THERE ANYTHING I WON’T LIKE?
You can expect to be a little homesick at times being that you are going to be separated from friends and family each time you begin a new assignment. Also, always being the new kid on the block and having to build new friendships and networks can be an exhausting task. But if you’re an extrovert and meeting new people excites you, you will have no problem!
Are you ready to take on the world of travel nursing?! This could definitely be one of the most exciting adventures of your life. It’s up to you to take charge and see what challenges you’re ready to accept and conquer. Once you start your career as a travel nurse, you may never go back to a permanent position again!