How much experience before travelling?
- 0Sep 26, '12 by 88nurse2010I have one year of med-surg experience & a little over one year in L&D. I'm definitely much more comfortable with my knowledge base, ability to communicate with physicians, labor support, and helping managing labor. I have thought about doing some travel nursing after one more year. Does anyone have a recommendation as to how much L&D experience is needed before travelling? I know everyone is different.
- 0Sep 26, '12 by CP2013Quote from 88nurse2010Try the travel nurse forum. They are a wealth of knowledge and can even suggest companies to look into!I have one year of med-surg experience & a little over one year in L&D. I'm definitely much more comfortable with my knowledge base, ability to communicate with physicians, labor support, and helping managing labor. I have thought about doing some travel nursing after one more year. Does anyone have a recommendation as to how much L&D experience is needed before travelling? I know everyone is different.
I have heard anywhere from 1-3 years depending on the company. So I don't see why you couldn't start looking into it. Best of luck!
- 0Sep 26, '12 by monkeybugAt least 2 years, in my opinion. And that should be 2 years in a busy unit with complicated patients. You are expected to hit the ground running and function on your own when you travel. My very first travel assignment, I got 2 days hospital orientation to learn the computers and stuff, but I got NO orientation on the unit. So my first assignment as a traveler, I had a delivery within 10 minutes of walking on the unit. I had no idea how to work their exam lights, what the doctors expected, where the supplies were, or anything. It was certainly baptism by fire!
- 0Sep 27, '12 by FyreflieI started travel nursing after 3.5 years--2 in a busier center with lots of deliveries and then 1.5 in a small, low-risk center that required me to be much more independent and sure of my assessments. I think experiencing both was important--the travel assignments I do now are all in rural hospitals with OBs out of house (if there is an OB at all). I would say make sure your triage skills are up to date, including assessing prems, doing specs and FFN swabs and possibly even digital exams. I did exams on patients as early as thirty weeks in my rural job quite a few times and at the beginning had no idea what a closed and long cervix was "supposed" to feel like.
So yeah--a couple of years of busy/higher risk is good but try to get some rural experience too if you can--it saved my life in my travel jobs!!
- 0Sep 28, '12 by bagladyrn GuideTwo years experience in L&D would be a good minimum to start traveling.
One suggestion - you will have a lot more latitude in traveling if you also have some experience in Mother/Baby and normal newborn Nursery as many of the smaller hospitals have the nurses move between all three (or cover all at once in the really small places). If you work in a hospital with separate areas I'd suggest volunteering to "cross-train" to the other two when L&D is less busy.