Newbie need information about California Assignments and travel agencies

  1. Hey, my girlfriend and I are about to take our first assignments. We want to travel to California initially, but we just don't know exactly what city or hospitals that are an excellent choice for our first assignments. A travel agency told us to look more toward the northern california region or the LA area for top pay assignments, and we want feedback for these regions. I work in med/surg, and she work in the NICU. We also wanted to know if anyone had any feedback on the travelmax agency and on-assignment agency. We are talking with both of those agencies as of now. We were talking to A. M., but we have got to much bad feedback on that agency. Let us know if you know of any other agency that are great. Thanks in advance.
  2. Visit JoeB1047 profile page

    About JoeB1047

    Joined: Aug '06; Posts: 15

    12 Comments

  3. by   NurseguyFL
    I haven't worked with Travelmax as a traveler but I worked with their registry affiliate (Maxim). They tend to pay a couple $$ lower than the competition but if you ask for more you can get it. Never had any problems with them. From what others have said about On Assignment, they seem to have a good reputation as well. What they told you about Northern Cali and the LA area is true. You can make more there. Moreso in some of the northern parts of the state than in LA.

    I've traveled to both LA and San Francisco, and both experiences were great. If you like the fast pace of big city life and you can tolerate nightmarish traffic, then you'll do fine in either location. Lots of culture to soak in. You'll never run out of places to go or stuff to do.
  4. by   Medic15251
    If you like outdoor activities you might look into northern CA. Eureka, CA was nice. The town itself was a bit industrial, but it is surrounded by beautiful beaches, rivers, national parks, redwood forests, and mountains. Last I heard the hospital there uses a lot of travelers. I know intelistaf staffs nurses there. Good luck.

  5. by   topnurse
    I would consider San Diego - fantastic weather, lots of hospitals, Childrens Hospital has great NICU, pay won't be as high as LA but you'll have so much to do - beach, mountains, hiking, biking, cultural events, nightlife, restaurants, shopping, casual and comfortable atmosphere, ranges from urban to rural, desert to mountain, really a terrific city, lots of pride.

    Good luck!
  6. by   LadyNASDAQ
    I went to Thousand Oaks my first time in Calif. I should have gone to LA. It's an exciting place to be, the people are very nice and most hospitals are unionized and fair.
  7. by   GoodAsGoldRN
    I live and work in Santa Rosa, California. If you want travel assignments here, contact your agency because there are 8 hospitals within 30 minutes where I live:
    Petaluma Valley Hosptial, Petaluma
    Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, Santa Rosa
    Sutter Medical Center, Santa Rosa
    Kaiser Permanente Hospital, Santa Rosa
    Healdsburg District Hospital, Healdsburg
    Palm Drive Hospital, Sebastopol
    Novato Community Hospital, Novato
    Sonoma Valley Hospital, Sonoma
  8. by   JoeB1047
    Quote from GoodAsGoldRN
    I live and work in Santa Rosa, California. If you want travel assignments here, contact your agency because there are 8 hospitals within 30 minutes where I live:
    Petaluma Valley Hosptial, Petaluma
    Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, Santa Rosa
    Sutter Medical Center, Santa Rosa
    Kaiser Permanente Hospital, Santa Rosa
    Healdsburg District Hospital, Healdsburg
    Palm Drive Hospital, Sebastopol
    Novato Community Hospital, Novato
    Sonoma Valley Hospital, Sonoma
    Hey GoodAsGoldRN. Thanks for replying to my email. It is funny that you are from Santa Rosa. My travel agent just told my girlfriend and I about an assignment at Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Santa Rosa. I heard that Kaiser hospitals can be crazy. Do you know if this is a good facility to take an assignment at. I see that it was in your list. Oh yeah, is Santa Rosa a good spot to visit as far as things to do? I really would appreciate your response.
  9. by   GoodAsGoldRN
    There are nurses tripping over each other in the Kaiser Hospitals in Santa Rosa. It is a very well staffed hospital. However....If you are looking for some really meaty nursing experience, look elsewhere. Memorial Hospital is the major trauma center there. My friend works in the ER at Kaiser in Santa Rosa. There are nurses coming in for shifts about every two hours throughout the day to replace off-going nurses.

    And oh my goodness....Santa Rosa is an excellent area to visit. I've lived here for over ten years and I've still got stuff on my list to do.
    Last edit by GoodAsGoldRN on Mar 8, '07
  10. by   JoeB1047
    Quote from GoodAsGoldRN
    There are nurses tripping over each other in the Kaiser Hospitals in Santa Rosa. It is a very well staffed hospital. However....If you are looking for some really meaty nursing experience, look elsewhere. Memorial Hospital is the major trauma center there. My friend works in the ER at Kaiser in Santa Rosa. There are nurses coming in for shifts about every two hours throughout the day to replace off-going nurses.

    And oh my goodness....Santa Rosa is an excellent area to visit. I've lived here for over ten years and I've still got stuff on my list to do.
    Do you know if the Kaiser hospital is traveler friendly? Oh yeah, is it true about the 4-5 patient/nurse ratio out in Cali? That will really be different if thats true because I'm used to dealing with at least 7 patient/day. I guess you can figure out that I'm a med/surg nurse. I will mention the Memorial hospital to my travel agent. Do Santa Rosa put you in the mind of a country-type atmosphere.
  11. by   GoodAsGoldRN
    Quote from JoeB1047
    Do you know if the Kaiser hospital is traveler friendly? Oh yeah, is it true about the 4-5 patient/nurse ratio out in Cali? That will really be different if thats true because I'm used to dealing with at least 7 patient/day. I guess you can figure out that I'm a med/surg nurse. I will mention the Memorial hospital to my travel agent. Do Santa Rosa put you in the mind of a country-type atmosphere.
    I've not heard bad things about traveler experiences in the ER at Kaiser. Kaiser is a fairly decent place to work.

    On the Med/Surg floor there is a cap on patients that you can have at any one time. That limit is 5. No more....and many times, no less. LOL.

    Having had to take care of 7 patients at a time before, I can assure you, it's a nice feeling to know that my patients are not having a nurse take care of them that is stretched out to the max.

    I can tell you that if you are a traveller to 2 East or 3 East at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, you must insist on a goodly orientation time. Be prepared to take care of muli-system 'train wrecks' on 2 East. Kidney failure, on dialysis with heart failure and various stages of cirrhosis AND to be in some form of MRSA isolation (invariably). Both floors that I mention are also tele-floors.

    I grew up on a farm out in the sticks of the Midwest. I went to country school K-8 (13 kids with one teacher) and then to a teeny tiny little highschool with the largest class consisting of 26 kids.

    Santa Rosa is totally do-able. It's pretty bucolic. You won't get swallowed up by high rise buildings while driving from one end of town to the other, yet it's big enough for several large malls and many trendy restaurants.

    This weekend, I'm going to The Last Day Saloon for comedy night. If I wasn't all 'old' n such, I'd visit the fancy martini bar around the corner from Club Seven while I waitied for the night to begin.

    Check out Spring Lake for an awesome paved, hilly, (and off-road) hiking/running/walking/bicycling experience. Try the bike path between Sebastopol and Santa Rosa. I'd go there after work every day to go rollerblading when it's not raining. It's a nice flat paved path. Try kayaking down the Russian River. Stay in a bed/breakfast along the coast in Jenner for as little as 98.00 per night. Rent a Miata and try the curves out on Hwy 1. Watch Barry Bonds lay his claim to fame when he beats Babe Ruth's home run record at the ball park in San Fransicso. Try out a Warrior's basketball game at the Oakland Colleseum. Go winetasting along Hwy 12. Go winetasting in Anderson Valley near Healdsburg. Go winetasting along Russian River Road. Drink some Cabernet Sauvignon Champagne at Korbel Winery. Calistoga is synonymous with "Massage" and "Mud baths". They've got natural sauna's galore there.

    I could go on and on.....There's so much to do! Ride a horse on the beach by Bodega Bay. Watch the whales from Bodega Head. (Now's the time of year to do that). If you take a walk on the beach that leads you back up to Bodega Head, you'll find a little cave at the very end. (It's a fair walk though)

    San Francisco, on the other hand, required about 6 months of working up the bravery to venture into. It wasn't all that bad. It pays to check out pier 39 and eat some clam chowder in a bread bowl. Beyond that.....San Francisco is pretty gargantuan to a small - towner like myself.

    Have fun.
  12. by   lilldebbi
    so i am at kaiser in LA (sunset) and there are the ups and downs of course like any hospital but i have been to hospitals in new york and florida and i would say this is by far the best hospital i have worked as a traveler with. im not looking to go to san francisco... i want another kaiser just because it may be easier to learn the new hospital because i will have already worked with a kaiser. so far the only one available through my company is kaiser in santa rosa. any feed back on how easy it is to travel in and out of san fran if i lived in san fran and worked in santa rosa? and any feed back on the kaiser in santa rosa?
  13. by   lilldebbi
    Quote from lilldebbi
    so i am at kaiser in LA (sunset) and there are the ups and downs of course like any hospital but i have been to hospitals in new york and florida and i would say this is by far the best hospital i have worked as a traveler with. im not looking to go to san francisco... i want another kaiser just because it may be easier to learn the new hospital because i will have already worked with a kaiser. so far the only one available through my company is kaiser in santa rosa. any feed back on how easy it is to travel in and out of san fran if i lived in san fran and worked in santa rosa? and any feed back on the kaiser in santa rosa?

    sorry i had a type.. i AM LOOKING TO GO TO SAN FRANSICO... i typed 'not looking' woops... can anyone help with some info?
  14. by   caliotter3
    Travel in and out of SF is a bear, but not as bad as LA. A more pressing consideration is housing in SF. Not easy to find or afford. If you were to live in or near SF and commute to Santa Rosa, is should be easier (at least for the day shift) b/c you would be doing the reverse commute. You would be doing better to live in/near Santa Rosa if that is where you plan to work. Less cost and less hassle.

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