If you are a nurse who wants the freedom to make your own career choices and discover new places in the process, then it’s time you gave travel nursing a try. As a travel nurse, you get to choose where you go and how you want to work. It is a great opportunity to work for new programs and hospitals and explore the world while you’re at it.
You must be a registered nurse or a health care specialist to be a travel nurse. Physical Therapists, Radiologic technologists, occupational therapists, speech language pathologists, and nurse managers are all eligible as well. Most facilities require at least 12-18 months of recent work experience in an acute-care setting, and sometimes more, dependent on your area of expertise.
A general travel nursing job will can last from 4 to 13 weeks in the US, giving the nurses the chance to become fully integrated in the hospital or medical center’s routine. This length of an assignment varies wildly and is dictated by the locations needs and the wishes of the applying nurse. In some hospitals, nurses may have the opportunity to work in another related specialty, thus getting the option to learn new technologies and skills.
The possibilities to expand your knowledge base and skill set with travel nursing are boundless. Traveling is obviously a wonderful way to learn new skills, now add into that top of the line facilities and the option to chose where you work – and your resume is looking better and better.
There are a multitude of websites and recruitment agencies designed to help nurses find appropriate travel nursing assignments. On these sites, you generally fill out a profile, answer questions based on skill and preference and then are free to browse the hundreds and hundreds of jobs available to you. These jobs are almost always well paid, complete with insurance and usually travel reimbursement. Sometimes housing is provided, or a housing stipend to help with living costs. Travel nurses have such limited out of pocket expenses that they tend to save large amounts of their pay.
At the end of a travel nursing assignment, you can move on to another assignment of your choice, or often, stay on at your current location. More often than not, travel nurses are offered permanent positions after a short term assignment. Most nurses stay on at each location for about a year, and then travel on, though some find a perfect place to stay after only one session. And there are a variety of top facilities that offer travel nursing assignments. Yale, Stanford, UC San Francisco and Johns Hopkins all have recruitment agencies that hire travel nurses to help them meet their staffing needs.
All registered health care professionals should consider a stint or a career in travel nursing. While enjoying lucrative pay and free accommodations, you get to travel through out the US (and sometimes abroad) while meeting new people in your field and learning new technologies. It is the best way to boost your resume without making a dent in your wallet.
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