If you are a nurse who enjoys the fast paced, ever changing environment seen in the Emergency Room, a job as a traveling Emergency Room nurse may just be what the doctor ordered.
What the Job Entails
Just like a traditional ER nurse, you'll work with a variety of patients and cases with varying medical histories. You may see children, adults, and elderly patients all in the same day. You’ll see minor injuries, life threatening injuries, and everything in between. The only difference is the travel between hospitals. The typical contract will last 13 to 15 weeks, and then it's on to your next assignment or home for a well-deserved break.
The emergency room can provide an adrenaline rush many people look for. It is fast paced, so there is little room for boredom, and most certainly always something to do to keep busy, even during a slow shift. You already know the job and you've got the experience you need to step in and help during a crisis.
Travel assignments mean new scenery every few months, and the extra money means that if you need a break, you can afford to take one. Working short term contracts means that you're in charge of your next assignment, and you can leave anything you hate about the current assignment behind when you move on, including weather, office politics and unreasonable co-workers. You can choose to hit the slopes during the winter with an assignment in Denver, and shake off the cold by scheduling your next assignment in sunny Florida.
With the generally hectic nature of the emergency room setting in the first place, adding the traveling element may make it harder on some people. It takes a real pro to be a traveling ER nurse, one is ready to step right in and take charge.
Depending on the length of the assignment, you may have to pick up and move again before you can get settled into any sort of work routine. You may get attached to the other staff members at the place you are working, and it might be hard to say goodbye. In some places, you may not receive a very warm welcome from the permanent staff members because they know you won’t be there long (and they may be just a tiny bit jealous that you make way more money). But the bottom line is that they need you and they know it, so you can win them over with a friendly nature and a little judicious tact.
Travel nursing isn’t for everyone, and not all nurses are interested in working in the Emergency Room environment. Combining the two takes heart, talent, and above average people skills.