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- by Steph in Boston Dec 14, '03Hello there,
I am a nurse-to-be, and one of the areas I am interested in is travelNursing. I would love it if you gave me a snippet of your life, if you have children, if your job allows you enough time for your family, what the hours are like, where do you go, and for how long, the pay, and your overall satisfaction with this area of nursing.
I am trying to get a good impression of all the fields of nursing I am intrigued by so that I can play with ideas before I go to school.
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- Dec 15, '03 by LoriPRN:roll It's a GREAT life! I have been traveling for about 2 years now and love it so much I sold my house and just live on the road. I travel with my husband, who is a stay at home dad and our preshooler. We are going to do home schooling for a few years. We'll settle down when she is in the 3rd or 4th grade. She is very advanced due to her travels. She has seen more in the past two years than most kids see in a lifetime. We use each new area as a learning experience. We are banking the money we save on expenses and plan to buy a farm somewhere in a few years. Great way to shop around for just the perfect place! Have to becareful about which hospital you chose but you learn that as you go along. 1 or 2 tought assignments and you learn what questions to ask. Usually if you have an open mind, it all works out. Good Luck!:coolLast edit by LoriPRN on Dec 15, '03
- Dec 16, '03 by Steph in BostonYour situation sounds exactly like what I would like to do someday! I am all about traveling with my children when they are young -- and you obviously see the benefits that it brings your child, being more worldly for one. Could you tell me where you have travelled? Some of the stresses? What your husbands views on the traveling, and being a stay-at-home father are? Do you feel taken care of when you first arrive at a new hospital, i.e., do they set you up with housing? How long are your positions held? And finally, why you got into nursing in the first place?
- Dec 16, '03 by LoriPRNWe have spent more time than I would have liked in south Florida. Don't get me wrong, it's beautiful, but I'm ready to move on. We also spent some time in the Ozark foot hills of Missouri. South east Missouri. It is breath taking there. We are on our way to northern Maine next. I heard that Aroostook medical center in Presque Isle is a nice place to work. I try to balance the regions where I want to go, the pay, and if possible feedback on the particular hospitals.
Car trouble is always a HUGE stress. Make sure you have your car checked before you hit the road and have a good travel club. Spent way to much time in FL having my car repaired. Even with the warrenty it was a big hassle. Looking for a Van so little one will have VCR to watch on long trips. She uses her Leap learning center alot also.
Being a stay at home dad was a big change for my husband. Although he likes staying at home with her, I have to be careful to not hurt his pride. If I'm mad I have a tendency to remind him how hard I work and how I make all the money. Not a good thing. I just have to remember that he is a man, and not used to housekeeping duties. If I leave him a detailed list of what to do it avoids alot of problems. All in all though, it is working out great! We love the travel so much, and there is always so much to do we don't have a lot to argue about. And we have been married 15 years!
It depends on you company how easy your housing will go. I am still shopping for a permanent company. This is my first assignment with Clinical One, and so far so good. RNNetwork is also a good company. Stay away from Cross Country! They charge you for one bedroom housing. I almost always get my extra bedroom for nothing or next to nothing. Some companies charge quite a bit for the extra bedroom, but ususally if they think you will leave them, they find a way to absorb the cost. You will need the extra bedroom with a little one. There are also strict housing laws in some states where you travel. So make sure they don't charge you, or if they do it's not very much. I have a 3 bedroom house, 2 baths and a double car garage for $10.00/month with utilities paid!
I travel as a telemetry or step-down unit RN. Make sure you know your skills and are honest with them on your skills check list. If you have a problem at a facility, you are held accountable to that skills check list. Most of my assignments are 13 weeks. If I really love an assignment and the area I will try to extend for a few months. Spent 6 months in Naples FL. It was FAB! Area and hospital!
Finally I became a nurse 20+ years ago. I was a 16 year old mother with no ambition in life. My sister was a CCRN. Her and my mother pretty much forced me to become a nurse, and Boy am I glad they did! I love my profession. It is respected, flexible, secure, and most of all rewarding! I can't think of anything else I would rather do! I would recommend it to anyone! Hope this helps, lori
- Dec 17, '03 by Steph in BostonSo I have some more questions for you! By the way, you are really helping me to formulate a good picture of travel nursing in my mind...
1) What is this about a company? Do you not become a travel nurse independently, but through an agency of sorts? Is it a means of protection, like a union?
2) How old is your child? Does your husband homeschool her? I moved around a lot when I was a kid, and loved it. Does she love it too?
3) Maine is beautiful -- albeit much colder than Florida! So, bring lots of layers!
4) What is your favorite area to work in as a nurse, and why?
- Dec 17, '03 by LoriPRNAs a travel nurse you are an indpendent agent. The hospitals however post their needs with the agencies. The agency then offers the position to the nurses who have applied to them. For instance, The hospital I am currently at, DMC posted their needs with the agencies they have contracts with. It just so happened that my company was one of them (alot of companies have the same contracts with alot of hospitals). I was looking for a Telemetry or Step down unit contract in south Florida. They told me that DMC was posting needs in my area of expertise. I said great. Submit my profile to them. 3 days later they called me. 2 -3 weeks later I was working for them. My contract is about up and I want to stay in Florida, but want to go for the big money. My company said we have a job posting with great pay in north, FL at CMH, asking for a Step down unit nurse. I said great, submit my profile. They did. The hospital called me and I am starting there mid January.
Is it protection? Well, they do have a clinical laison that is supposed to help resolve problems, but I have found that they usually side with the hospital. Anytime you walk out on a contract you have to pay back the housing. That is why it is important to make sure you interview the hospital carefully. Make sure it is something you can handle. Be confident in your skills. There is no union. Be careful that the job they offer you is not at a hospital where the nurses are on strike. You don't want to cross a picket line. It rarely happens, but is possible.
Yes, my hubby and I both home school. Our daughter is very advanced. 4 years old and can add and subtract. Is learning to read. Travel has been wonderful for her. Only set back is social intercation with children her own age. We have to find every opporunity to take you around other children. Parks, activities, and local children. We will settle down when she get around 8 or 9.
My love for nursing is in cardiac care. I gave up med-surg years ago. I like telemetry units, step-down units, and post angioplasty. Will work some low acuity ICU (no SWANS or Balloon pumps). There are needs in all areas of nursing no matter what your area is.
Hope this helps, Lori
- Dec 21, '03 by bae54I was at the same hospital for twenty two years and decided to try traveling after several travelers came thru and I talked to them about the places they had worked. I have done two different assignments in FL, one in New Orleans and I am presently in Las Vegas with Los Angeles on the planning borad. I have enjoyed traveling. You do not get caught up in the political junk and if you hate the assignment or the area it is only for 13 weeks and most nurses can do anything for 13 weeks. I do not have children , but I do have family back east and I fly home several times a year. I do know of couples with small children traveling and the kids get exposure to all types of areas of the country and the people that live there. School age children could be a problem but there is all home schooling. It is a great way of seeing the country. It is kind of like being in the service except that when you get tired of it you can say I am going home now. The service would get upset about that.
- Jan 13, '04 by SoonstudentThis is one of the more informative theads I've read. Thanks a lot for the info.
- Jan 13, '04 by teeituptomMekes me almost wish my wife would kick me out so I could do travel nursing, as long as its to a place where there are golf course I wouldny mind at all. Like Ben Hogan
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