5 Questions to Ask Before Accepting a Travel Nurse Assignment

7 Questions to Ask Before Accepting Your Next Travel Nursing Assignment

Know more about a travel nurse job from trusted agencies that offer opportunities for nurses like you to be a part of this skyrocketing demand for the nursing profession.  But, before you jump right into it, you should know some facts so that you will know if this is a job for you.

Travel nurse jobs have benefited nurses who have shifted into this career opportunity.  Aside from the luxury of being able to be in different places and meeting new people, they are also being paid more than their permanent counterparts.

  1.  What Type Of Travel Nurses Are Most Needed?

Before taking an offer as a travel nurse, you should learn if your skills and experience qualify.  Although there are a variety of specialties that travel nursing jobs offer, you should be familiar with the most needed ones.  The most in-demand and top ten highest-paying travel nurse specialties include:

  • Labor and delivery nurses
  • Operating room nurses
  • Neonatal intensive care unit nurse
  • Post-anesthesia care unit nurse
  • ICU nurses
  • Emergency room nurses
  • Pediatrics nurse
  • Step-down unit nurse
  • Telemetry nurse

The higher salary offered by a travel nurse is enough to encourage many nurses to take this opportunity to earn more.  When you acquire at least one year of experience in any of these high-demand travel nurse specialties, your chance of getting hired increases even more.  So, choose the specialty that you are passionate about, so you can be a perfect fit when there is an offer for it.

  1.  What Responsibilities Do Travel Nurses Have?

The requirements for being a travel nurse are quite similar to that of a regular staff nurse with some additional perks.  To know if you are fit for this job, know the responsibilities that will lay on your shoulders.  These responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Assisting local staff of healthcare facilities, clinics, or hospitals when they have shortages during emergencies or when their staff goes on leave.  This is the most practical reason for the need for travel nurses.  They are to assist the in-house staff by sharing their workload.
  • Working at schools where the school nurse is unavailable to attend to the medical needs of students.  You will be expected to perform the following duties:
  • Carry out medication and infusions in recommended dosages
  • Make sure that medications are administered at the correct time
  • Observe and report the effect of medical dosages on the patient to the attending physician
  • Taking samples and dispatching them to relevant laboratories and reporting readings like blood pressure, pulse, temperature, and other parameters to measure and monitor the health of the patient.
  • Conducting vaccination drives to remote areas by assisting in vaccination programs like camps or by walking door-to-door to administer vaccines.
  • Comforting elderly and terminally ill patients in hospices, rehabilitation centers, and old homes.  
  1.  What Are Some Skills You Need to Be a Travel Nurse?

The unique job of being a travel nurse requires these skills:

  • Flexibility
  • Adaptability
  • Language skills
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Teamwork
  • Love of travel

These skills make a travel nurse be able to interact well with others and form relationships in an ever-changing environment.

  1.  What is the Rate?

Make sure that the agency offering a travel nurse job is clear in its answer to this question.  Know the following potential parts of the package when it comes to being ‘paid’ as a travel nurse:

  • Pay and compensation packages
  • Company-provided housing vs. housing stipend
  • Meals and incidental expenditure reimbursement vs. none of these
  • Medical benefits
  • Travel expenses
  • Hourly, overtime, and extra hours rate
  1.  Will My Contract Have Guaranteed Hours?

You choose to be a travel nurse with the assurance to have a regular paying job.  Knowing if you have guaranteed working hours will give you security in having a reliable and steady source of income. 

 Ask the agency offering travel nurse jobs what does not apply to your guaranteed hours so you will not be caught off-guard when you receive your salary.  Some travel nurses get paid prorated based on the number of hours that they work.

With these questions and answers, you now know more about a travel nurse job and if this is for you.  If you have further questions, you can talk to professional and licensed travel nurse agencies.