Odd Situation/Travel Nursing...Input, Please

  1. My close friend who is an RN and I work per diem for an agency that sends nurses to administer vaccinations for the US Armed Services. I am licensed in NY. From what I understand, you cannot work elsewhere unless you have applied for reciprocacy. I do love the job, it is fun, the nurses work great together and they love my hard work. Sometimes, they get assignments to work New Jersey and I know for a fact that two of the nurses that go are licensed for New Jersey. They used to send my friend to assignments like this also, to Jersey, but then, because her license out there expired, they stopped using her.

    Now, today, I receive a text message from the person who normally works as a clerk with us (she works with the RN who runs this agency at a medical insurance underwriter company) asking me if I wanted to work an event in PA. I immediately sent an email asking if I am licensed to work there (knowing the answer was no) and basically, I put them off until I received a response from them regarding licensure. Then, my friend who normally works with me called me and said they called and asked her. I say the same "Do you have a license to work out there" and her response is "Well, they're desperate". I told her to forget it.

    Now, it just may be that because this agency services Army men that there is a loophole somewhere, however, no one sent me anything in writing making this clear. I think this should have been the first thing that came out of her mouth...either "Pagan, I would like for you to work, and I am sending you information that will clear you", or even " Pagan, I want you to work, we are taking a chance", to give ME a choice. God forbid something happens out there, I cannot envision NSO covering me for practicing out of state, and then, like the other thread that is currently going on, that I, too, will be disappointed in my visit to the BON because I let greed interfere with common sense. What do you guys think?

    This actually leads to another question;traveling nurses. How are you guys covered? Are you traveling within your state? Did you have to apply for reciprocracy to work in other states, or was there a clause because of the agency that you work for? If so, did they give you anything in writing?

    Because this agency called me at the last minute, asking that I go this Friday, I said 'no' because this doesn't give me enough time to make an educated decision and I'd rather be safe than sorry. In addition, this gives me a chance to see where this particular agency (or rather the nurse, herself who I work with) is coming from. Don't risk ME because you get a big buck assignment, buddy. My license and way of life is NOT for sale.

    Thanks!
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  2. 16 Comments

  3. by   jnrsmommy
    I'm curious if this is being performed at a military installation, because you can work w/ an out of state license, but I don't know if that applies to someone not employed by Uncle Sam. Just a thought I had, and worth looking in to.
  4. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from jnrsmommy
    i'm curious if this is being performed at a military installation, because you can work w/ an out of state license, but i don't know if that applies to someone not employed by uncle sam. just a thought i had, and worth looking in to.
    i am a civilian, so, this is why i am curious. what i am thinking, however, is if this is legal, then, she should have immediately sent me information in writing stating how i would be covered. i just got through emailing the bon, because if this happens again, i need to be clear for myself, and i plan to call nso tomorrow. i am learning that many of these agencies fly under the radar and i ain't risking my license for anyone. as i said, because this is so last minute (the assignment is saturday), even if it is okay, it is not enough time for me to have my buckets in order. accidents never give us warnings, so, i want to be well prepared just in case.
  5. by   caliotter3
    Travel nurses get licenses for the states that they are going to do assignments in. Some gather a collection of licenses that they keep up to date. If you were actually an employee of the VA, you could work with your present license, but I think the circumstances you describe calls for obtaining a local license. I sure wouldn't do it unless I had something in writing from the Board.
  6. by   karenchad
    i have been looking into both quite heavily lately- travel nursing with the usual agencies and the VA. for the usual agencies you DO need a License in each state you are accepting work assignments in (you apply to EACH BON every single state you want to work in - you will be sending an applicat for a temprary licens and a permentent licens. and paying for both: go under the Boards of Nursing for the websites) the VA-civillian nurse working a military IS different all you need is 1 unemcumbered licesen. and can work any state it's a military thing- go to the VA nursing website- they have their own forms and downloads- and a thing called VET PRO CERTIFIED. I live in NJ, my original licen is in NJ and a travel agency(NOT VA) sent me to Phila, PA on assignments- I had to get a Penn licen to do those assignments- it can get costly but some agencies will reimburse for the cost of the licen as a perk. DO NOT EVER PRACTISE IN ANY STATE FOR ANY AGENCY WITHOUT THE APPROPRIATE LICENSE_ THEY WILL FINE & HEAVY, SUSPEND or TAKE AWAY your ability to practice permentatly. it's diciplinary action. You have to read read and read on the BON sites, agency sites, especially the travel agencies- the licens infor , resource and FAQ drop downs and government sites( VA and VA Travel NURSING CORP)
  7. by   karenchad
    all reciprocity means is one state will recognize the other state's licen- you still need a lices for each state you are practicing in. ie Pa will recognize the NJ licens but you still need to apply for and obtain a Penn lices to practice nursing in Penn---- Pa will recognize you took nursing exam in NJ, passed and have a NJ nursing licens and will not make you take Pa nursing exam to get a Pa licens.but you must apply to the Pa BON with the Pa application and pay Pa's fee. ( uless you are in a compact state if your original nursing licen is in a so called compact state then there is something totaly different- read up on compact state- I think they- a group of states only recognize each oethers licen- NJ and Pa are not a member of this group) them there are "walk thru " states another whole ball of wax. The point is READ and research before you go.
  8. by   karenchad
    my delema is different- do I go travel full time( did some and kinda know what i am in for- highs and no work low period of the travel nurse business), do I accept a VA civilian RN staff position( a outpatient clinic- never done and not a clue what to expect) close to home, or do I go just simply go staff( cardiac tele with a new twist- pulling card cath sheaths and possible the same old same old crap/politics and problems .) any advice is greately appreciated. MONey is a major player and problem right now- single mom, divorced and bankruptcy to avoid forclosure.
  9. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from karenchad
    i have been looking into both quite heavily lately- travel nursing with the usual agencies and the VA. for the usual agencies you DO need a License in each state you are accepting work assignments in (you apply to EACH BON every single state you want to work in - you will be sending an applicat for a temprary licens and a permentent licens. and paying for both: go under the Boards of Nursing for the websites) the VA-civillian nurse working a military IS different all you need is 1 unemcumbered licesen. and can work any state it's a military thing- go to the VA nursing website- they have their own forms and downloads- and a thing called VET PRO CERTIFIED. I live in NJ, my original licen is in NJ and a travel agency(NOT VA) sent me to Phila, PA on assignments- I had to get a Penn licen to do those assignments- it can get costly but some agencies will reimburse for the cost of the licen as a perk. DO NOT EVER PRACTISE IN ANY STATE FOR ANY AGENCY WITHOUT THE APPROPRIATE LICENSE_ THEY WILL FINE & HEAVY, SUSPEND or TAKE AWAY your ability to practice permentatly. it's diciplinary action. You have to read read and read on the BON sites, agency sites, especially the travel agencies- the licens infor , resource and FAQ drop downs and government sites( VA and VA Travel NURSING CORP)
    Judging by what you are saying, this seems to be a slightly different situation...I am not employed by the Veteran's Hospital, but a private agency who receives assignments from the Federal Government to service their military. I am from New York, and as far as I know, I can only practice here. If she wanted me to go somewhere else to practice, then, I feel that she needs to provide for me in writing how and what they'll cover me for and allow me time to review this for myself. I have no issues working for them here in NY, but nowhere else. I already emailed my BON, will call NSO tomorrow. It is a dead issue for this assignment because I don't have enough time to be able to drum up enough information for me to review by Friday, but this is good information to know for the next time.

    I appreciate the time you took to share this, and thanks again everyone else for responding.
  10. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from karenchad
    all reciprocity means is one state will recognize the other state's licen- you still need a lices for each state you are practicing in. ie pa will recognize the nj licens but you still need to apply for and obtain a penn lices to practice nursing in penn---- pa will recognize you took nursing exam in nj, passed and have a nj nursing licens and will not make you take pa nursing exam to get a pa licens.but you must apply to the pa bon with the pa application and pay pa's fee. ( uless you are in a compact state if your original nursing licen is in a so called compact state then there is something totaly different- read up on compact state- i think they- a group of states only recognize each oethers licen- nj and pa are not a member of this group) them there are "walk thru " states another whole ball of wax. the point is read and research before you go.

    amen to that...which is why i ain't going...not enough time to review to protect myself.
  11. by   pagandeva2000
    Update: Got a response from the State BON; she told me "You are a smart cookie...", because she said that most people would think that this was connected to a Federal assignment that this would be safe to go to, but really, a person has to have a license in each state that they practice, even the VA hospitals.

    This woman cannot find anyone, apparently, because she has been calling me and my friend leaving text messages all morning about how this is a special request for PA to ask for our services. I mean, what is this where there are no nurses available for them to do this?? I presume that the other nurses she asked probably thought the same thing I did (hopefully).

    This woman was probably either seeing stars in her eyes due to money and thinks this is an opportunity to expand throughout the Northern East Coast since more servicemen are being sent over to the troubled countries. And, she must be so blinded that she either did not bother to check for herself or that she didn't care. Well, it is okay with me that she doesn't care about herself, but she had better show some consideration for the nurses and those same nurses had better check out for themselves. Heck, for all of that, she might as well get any layperson to administer those vaccines because my license is worth dirt over there. It is amazing how we really have to think for ourselves. Anyhow, ain't my problem, I am NOT going!
  12. by   caliotter3
    I find it interesting and not surprising that she is trying to hoodwink people by trying to get them to fall for the "special request" ploy. Special request by who? Certainly not the nursing boards in PA. Good that you caught this.
  13. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from caliotter3
    I find it interesting and not surprising that she is trying to hoodwink people by trying to get them to fall for the "special request" ploy. Special request by who? Certainly not the nursing boards in PA. Good that you caught this.
    I went to the PA BON website and nothing even remotely indicated that they would allow us to do anything more than 'basic nursing skills' to be supervised by LPNs and RNs (I am sure those that are licensed in THEIR state), which, to me, meant CNA duties. Now, sure, I work under the auspice of an RN, but if that RN has no business being there herself, that means SQUAT to ME. And, let something happen where a patient suffers an adverse or mortal effect by a shot given by me and see how quickly everyone turns on me. She might as well get a stranger on the street to do them than ask me.
  14. by   pagandeva2000
    Oh, and I inquired with MY state board of nursing, who governs ME. That woman must be NUTS!

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