By September 28, 2011 0 Comments

Ask a Travel Nurse: Long time LPN getting RN, will I need 2 years before traveling?


travel nurse

Ask a Travel Nurse Question:

I am an LPN of 17 years and am now going back for my RN. Will I still have to work 2 years prior to being able to take an assignment to travel? Are there any specific fields that are needed more than any others in travel nursing?

Ask a Travel Nurse Answer:

I do not know how the market will look when you are out of school. If the nursing shortage pans out to be like the experts believe, I’m sure the increased dem and for nurses will drive the qualification back toward 1 year. But again, I have no idea how the industry will look at the time when you graduate.

The best advice I can give you is to find the specialty that you enjoy. Most mainstream specialties should still be in dem and when you are ready to travel. Certainly any high acuity areas like ICU/CCU/CVICU should be in dem and , but areas like med-surg/tele and even OB or L&D should work well for you. The further you go outside the common specialties in nursing, the fewer postings you might find. However, there is always a need somewhere. After being contacted by a nurse working corrections, I was surprised to find that there are specific websites that cater to travel nurses specializing in corrections. So even if you choose the most obscure specialty, you might very well find a need for travel nurses in that specialty.

Get a well rounded education and try to stick with a common specialty for your best success. In year one after you graduate, perfect your skills in things like IV starts, blood draws, and foley and NG insertions. After a year, call a few companies and see what the hospitals are considering as far as experience goes.

Hope this helps.



About the Author:

Hello everyone. I’m a travel nurse originally from Ohio who graduated in 1993 from Mount Carmel School of Nursing in Columbus. I completed a critical care fellowship at Riverside Methodist Hospital in 1994 and started traveling in that specialty a year later. My first travel assignment was in Maui and since that time I have completed close to 40 different contracts in various states with multiple travel companies. I am the author of Travel Nurse’s Bible (A Guide to Everything on Travel Nursing), in addition to my writings here and in the pages of Travel Nursing publications such as Healthcare Traveler Magazine and American Nurse Today. I am presently on assignment in Phoenix, AZ and travel anywhere from six to eleven months of the year.

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