The life of a travel nurse is exhausting, exciting and filled with rewarding experiences. Ask any company how you would benefit by becoming a travel nurse and they will line up to tell you the countless reasons you should travel, and travel with them. How many of them can tell you about the difference you can make as a travel nurse, though? Allow TRS Healthcare to be the first then.
- You elevate the nurses around you, just by being there
No one doubts the skill and expertise that a healthcare traveler brings to a new facility. That’s one of the primary reasons they are so sought after. A facility recognizes that for less than the cost of two full-time, core staff members, they can hire one traveler, work them twice as hard, and that traveler will be back for more on their next shift. Even a former traveler who is looking to settle down somewhere will find it quite advantageous to have travel contracts on her resume because hiring managers know the caliber and quality of a veteran traveler. It’s that same experience that also rubs off on the core staff while you are on assignment, particularly young nurses who perhaps cannot find a role model among the permanent staff. You play to the level of your team and being a seasoned nurse and traveler means that the core staff will step it up, if only to show what they can do as well.
- You go where you are needed most
Be it due to bad management, a particularly bad flu season or a traumatic incident, odds are, there is a healthcare traveler in your facility on hand to assist. In 2017 alone, we’ve seen back to back Category 4 hurricanes strike the southern United States and the worst mass shooting in United States history. These awful scenarios are made tolerable only by the heroes who work non-stop to comfort and restore lives of the patients and family members around them. Wherever there is great need, a travel nurse will be there; not for pay, not for the scenery, not for the glory but because they answered the call.
- You don’t bring the drama with you
As any Nurse Manager will tell you, handling a team of nurses with different goals, different backgrounds and from different schools of thought requires a delicate balance. Who can work with whom? Who likes to gossip? Who brings their personal lives to work with them? These are tough waters for anyone to navigate. When a traveler arrives, knowing full well that they are only there for 13 weeks, the temptation to get involved in work politics disappears and the manager knows that. You are coming in there solely for patient care and don’t particularly care who the cool kids are and what they did last night. You make their job so much easier and they are grateful to have you.
- You’re flexible and everyone is appreciative of that
Your fellow nurses on the unit probably have been working overtime as a stop-gap measure to ensure continuity of patient care. However, as any nurse will tell you, working days and days in a row without proper rest or nutrition is going to diminish a nurse’s effectiveness. As a traveler willing to take an assignment there, you are allowing much needed R&R to the veteran nurses. If the facility is trying to solve the long-term problem and hiring new grads, your experience is going to help them become better nurses, faster than if they were shadowing overworked and exhausted healthcare providers.
- You bring a fresh perspective
New eyes see things differently and new blood can be invigorating to a team. Not only are you available to share professional insights when asked, you are also someone new who can contribute to your temporary community by getting involved locally. Travel nurses who get involved with local events, causes and activities report much more satisfaction with an assignment and some make lifelong friends with their contributions to society.
We limited our topic to 5 ways a travel nurse makes a difference but we’re certain there are many more, not the least of which are the lives touched while being a healthcare professional. What are some other ways you feel that you’ve been able to make a difference?