If you’ve ever talked to a travel nurse recruiter, even here at Ventura Medstaff, you may get the impression that the life of a travel nurse is filled with amazing adventures and exciting experiences.
And while that is true, you can experience quite a lot, it is still primarily a job contract, and as such, requires a lot of commitment and hard work. And it’s not for everyone. Before you decide to go for one of these contracts, consider what a typical day of a traveling nurse looks like.
This typically happens in the first couple of days but can last a bit longer than that. Waking up in a strange city and not realizing where exactly you are in the dazed state can be a traumatic experience, especially for first-time travelers.
But don’t worry, it happens to everyone, at least a little bit. Coming to terms with where you are and embracing your new surroundings and your new (temporary though it may be) home takes a bit of time, and a bit of conscious effort on your part. All you need to do is establish a few routines and waking up in a new and strange city will become waking up in your new home.
Getting Your Bearings
Now that the morning routines are all sorted, it’s time to actually start thinking about work. Before your first day at work, make sure you have all of the paperwork you need ready, and then copy them in at least 2 copies – just in case.
Do you already know your way around the new city? Have you practiced your route on Google maps or some similar service? Finding the best route from your accommodation to your work can be a fun little exploration game in the coming weeks – just make sure you get to work on time.
If you’re planning to use public transport, ensure that you have your pass handy and that it is up to date. Drivers should be aware of the best places to park – something close to the ward where you’ll be working.
Traveling Nurse Work Orientation
As a temporary employer, the hospital (or any other medical institution) will have to provide some basic orientation to you. However, it is usually not specified how long or how detailed this orientation needs to be. That means that it can be as short as a day or two. In fact, it almost always is.
Cramming as much knowledge about how the institution works in such a short period of time can feel a bit jarring – which is why at least some work experience is required for traveling nurses. As a nurse, it is expected that you know how to treat patients, but the job requires more from you.
You will need to know the protocols and procedures that your new employer uses and you will need to be able to implement them in your everyday work. Learning quickly is pretty much a requirement for traveling nurses.
Finding Common Grounds with Coworkers
You may be nervous about meeting your new colleagues, especially if they are residents and not travelers like yourself. But here’s a little secret – they’ll be more than happy you are there. Traveling nurses tend to be posted towards and positions that are understaffed – meaning you bring a bit of respite to your coworkers.
Keeping a friendly relationship with your fellow nurses, and even the doctors are a great way to feel welcome and to ensure that you can work well with them. If there are travel nurses who have been there longer than you, make sure to reach out to them and ask them about their experiences with the job and the people.
Explore and Experience the City
Now that your shift is over, you can do what most travel nurses want to do – explore new places and experience a city far from home. When you sign on with Ventura Medstaff, we will present you with some of the most attractive and lucrative contracts in the US and wider. It is up to you to find the locality that suits you the best.
Anywhere from Alaska to Hawaii to Texas and New York are looking for travel nurses and each of those places offers something unique to people visiting. Think about what you want to see and experience, and reach out to our recruiters and we will find the best posting for you as soon as possible.