One of the obvious benefits of being a traveling nurse is right there in the title. Traveling. There aren’t many careers in life you could pursue that could take you from a major metropolis like Los Angeles, CA to the rural setting of Wahoo, NE. That’s the beauty of choosing to be a traveling nurse as your occupation, the options are endless.
More often than not, the bigger cities are the first choice of travelers with their big bustling hospitals and highly advanced technologies. But what about the smaller, more intimate settings, like that of a rural community? No matter what the choice, there will be opportunities abound… But these opportunities are unique to the location. In a major city hospital your job is clear and instructions concise. Whereas in a rural atmosphere a nurse will have to be able to handle not only their specialty, but probably many other duties, including more decision making when a physician is not close at hand. Just because the nurse may be required to do and know a little more in the smaller facility, does not mean that the tools and technology are not there. Sometimes the rural hospital will have just as much if not more in advanced technology.
No matter the location, whether big or small, the need for nurses is on the rise, especially in the rural communities. As the need for nurses increases, the number of available nurses in theses smaller towns is decreasing because of the lack of schools in the area and so forth. Therefore, hospitals in these areas rely on the traveling nurse to fill the void.
The hospitals have needs for nurses ranging in all fields and specialties, and the settings in which these hospitals lie are as varied as the positions. The idea of a rural setting may include that of rolling hills and pastures, but some are desolate and bare, with little to no appeal. On the other hand, you may be lucky enough to find yourself stationed at hospital close to a ski resort or somewhere that sees only a seasonal need for healthcare staffing help.
No matter the hospital, big or small, the pay typically is comparable. The difference may be that your staffing agency may include a completion bonus for taking a less appealing assignment in a rural hospital. It’s all relative though; what some may see as dull, others may see as a chance to enjoy life at a slower pace. Nurses who take jobs in the smaller towns and cities are welcome and soon after learn that they are not just another healthcare professional passing through. Often times the nurses feel so welcome that they become part of the family and really connect with those they care for and sometimes extending their stays two or three times. This can happen in a larger hospital, but usually there is not enough time to spur such relationships.
There are obvious differences in job settings from rural to urban. That’s the beauty of being a traveling healthcare professional. You can choose where you want to go, big or small, busy or quiet. But ultimately the choice is to make a difference in peoples lives, to show them that no matter what they do, where they live, they all deserve proper care and compassion to make their lives a healthy one. That is after all why you became a nurse, isn’t it?