Travel Nursing in St. Thomas

  1. 0
    I have accepted an assignment to RLS Hospital in the US Virgin Islands with Professional Nursing Services. I leave January 5th and was wondering if anyone could give me advice on car rentals, perhaps share your experiences in St. Thomas working and living (I am aware that the healthcare system down there tends to be be not so up to par with mainland hospitals), and/or if anyone has experience with PNS in terms of their housing and accomodations, etc. Just looking for helpful hints of advice, positive and negative....anything to get me prepared for my 13 week assignment. Thank you.
  2. 101 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    Quote from sarahjonam22
    I have accepted an assignment to RLS Hospital in the US Virgin Islands with Professional Nursing Services. I leave January 5th and was wondering if anyone could give me advice on car rentals, perhaps share your experiences in St. Thomas working and living (I am aware that the healthcare system down there tends to be be not so up to par with mainland hospitals), and/or if anyone has experience with PNS in terms of their housing and accomodations, etc. Just looking for helpful hints of advice, positive and negative....anything to get me prepared for my 13 week assignment. Thank you.
    Wow! Each time I hear people going to the US Virgin Islands, I am hear the contracts are usually for 6 mos. I am happy to know there are short term assignments (the 6 month commitment is the thing that has always me away).
  4. 0
    Quote from sarahjonam22
    I have accepted an assignment to RLS Hospital in the US Virgin Islands with Professional Nursing Services. I leave January 5th and was wondering if anyone could give me advice on car rentals, perhaps share your experiences in St. Thomas working and living (I am aware that the healthcare system down there tends to be be not so up to par with mainland hospitals), and/or if anyone has experience with PNS in terms of their housing and accomodations, etc. Just looking for helpful hints of advice, positive and negative....anything to get me prepared for my 13 week assignment. Thank you.
    ------------

    You really should check out a travel for that particular advice.
    I will PM you the sites because I am not sure if I can post them here. I posted a book title before and was not aware that I could do that.

    Sarah
  5. 0
    How cool! I love St. Thomas and could easily do travel nursing there. However, it is a very poor country...take care and tell us how you like it.
  6. 3
    Quote from traumaRUs
    How cool! I love St. Thomas and could easily do travel nursing there. However, it is a very poor country...take care and tell us how you like it.
    ps........st thomas is not a very poor country..................i
    ts one of three islands that all belong to the united states of america!!!!!!!!!!
    its not a state its a territory as they have their own government, but controlled by the states.
    they call them america's paradise, and lots of american tourists pay lots of money to vacation here.
  7. 0
    Hi Sarah!

    I think you should be done with your assignment to the Virgin Islands about now. How was it? Are you going to renew? I have always been interested in going there and would love to hear about your experiences with the territory and with the agency you worked for. Hope you had a great time!

    Thanks,
    Christine:innerconf
  8. 2
    Hey Christine! Sorry it took so long to get back to you. I did indeed just finish up my 3 month assignment in St. Thomas at Roy Lester Schneider Hospital. If you are serious about taking an assignment there, I would really take careful consideration especially if you work in the med/surg area. RLS Hospital is definitely one of the worst, if not the worst, hospitals I have ever worked in. Pardon my truthfulness and bluntness but I definitely feel future travelers need to be well-informed of what to expect. I worked on the medical floor. When I first got there the whole hospital was coming off a staffing crisis over the holidays. The acuity of the patients on medical was terribly high and they were still pretty short staffed as well as consistently full census. Therefore, each nurse got anywhere between 7-9 patients on night shift. You must know though that I had just come from a year in California where nurse/patient ratio laws are mandated so it definitely was new and shocking to me. Regardless, the hospital on the whole is quite outdated, equipment is old and doesn't work half the time, and most importantly, the permanent staff tend to throw a lot of attitude and laziness. It definitely got better and towards the end of my assignment I was down to 4-6 patients, the medical floor got a lot more tame. I never did get used to the people down there, there is quite a culture shock for the entire island on the whole. I could go on and on but I must tell you that what helped me get through the 3 months is the beauty of the island, the island hopping, the other travel nurses I met and became fantastic friends with (and the man of my dreams I met and am still currently with). The nightlife is fun and you'll definitely experience island life here. The housing my company set me up was great. What company are you going through? I know very few send travelers to St. Thomas. Let me know if you need a company and recruiter. Professional Nursing Services is who I went through and my recruiter Jolene Buck was great. I can refer you if you would like. The licensure process is a joke but there were specific reasons for that. But people down there are just more laid back...WAY laid back. Anyway, let me know if I can answer anymore questions. Hope this helps with your decision making process. I did enjoy it greatly but not for the work.

    Hope to hear from you soon,
    Sarah
    amy0123 and Conqueror+ like this.
  9. 0
    What did you have to do to get licensed there? I'm sure it took a while to get it. I use to live an St. Croix and just getting a driver's license there was an experience. lol I'm thinking about going back again...I now have my RN license...didn't have it when I lived there before.
    Deb
  10. 0
    Hello-I ended up turning down a Virgin Islands assignment due to the info provided by my agency. They had problems with travelers in the past being very disgruntled at the "third world" like atmosphere of the hospitals there. It seems that things went very very slow and access to "modern" type equpiment and drugs was not available. However I have never worked there and cannot give you any "real" info on working conditions.I have worked in several tiny hospitals in the continental US that seemed that way to me after leaving a large modern facility. Maybe that is what the other travelers had it to compare to. When I was considering the assignment, I did learn that public transport isn't too great and you might possibly need a car. If you have no lien on your car-you can have it shipped there for around $1200-1500 US(one-way) Cars are very expensive in the islands, and you could possibly make some money if you have a fairly new vehicle to ship and then sell.Rental cars were too expensive for my budget-but you might check into it or ask for housing very close to the hospital so cab fare will not be too expensive. They do have cheap ferries between the islands.If you can afford a "working" vacation and your bills back home aren't big-this seems like a WONDERFUL experience both professionally and personally. Good Luck!!!
  11. 0
    did my 18 months on st croix, fantastic island experience and yes the hospital is very third world, but then i have worked stateside in a large modern hospital and the staff there could have done with some training in manners, and treating fellow workers with respect. besides working the staff to death with unsafe patient ratios, and putting nursing licences on the line . some of the islanders can be very rude and lazy in their attitude wo work, but then i worked with a great team of nursing and they were all islanders. we all helped each other. but i do miss the beach and the water, where its as warm as a bath tub and as blue as the sky. not too mention the laid back island life style.


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