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Pros and Cons of Working As an ICU Travel Nurse
ICU travel nurses are nurses employed in hospitals and other healthcare facilities across the US. These professionals offer expert care to patients who have become ill or injured and require life-saving treatments. Most of these nurses work under contract with hospitals, receiving a stipend from them as payment.
The Advantages of Working As An ICU Travel Nurse
Intensive Care Unit (ICU) travel nurses are in high demand and enjoy competitive pay and benefits. They get to explore new places within the country and encounter diverse cultures first-hand. Furthermore, they can work at various hospitals such as community clinics or large teaching institutions.
An ICU travel nurse is an ideal option for those who enjoy working in different settings and discovering new places. ICU nurses have the freedom to determine their own hours of work and where they work, giving them maximum flexibility.
Cons of Working As An ICU Travel Nurse
One major disadvantage of being an ICU travel nurse is that you may not always receive the best assignments on the unit. These assignments may prove challenging, and you may need to care for complex patients.
As a nurse, you will often need to relocate between units as they require staff. This can be both tiring and unpleasant.
One of the drawbacks to being an ICU travel nurse is that not all patients will survive. This can be especially heartbreaking if you have a loved one in the hospital for an extended period of time.
Infection Control Travel Nurses are highly paid for their skills in recognizing and controlling infections in nursing environments. Their role is essential in reducing patient risk of infection while improving care quality.
They help prevent the spread of germs and other hazardous agents that could harm patients, their families and healthcare professionals. ICU travelers are well compensated for their services; many hospitals require them to complete a certification course as part of their employment requirements.
As an ICU travel nurse, you will face a very demanding environment. Every day you will be around sick and dying patients which can be physically and psychologically draining for you both physically and mentally, potentially leading to burnout in the long run. This type of environment should not be underestimated when considering what career options are available for you in this demanding field.
The Lead Time for ICU Jobs
Despite an increase in demand for ICU nurses, there are still relatively few open positions. Thus, the lead time for an ICU travel nurse to secure a job is much shorter than other specialty nurses’ positions.
There are several reasons for this trend. Many hospitals have more stringent experience requirements for ICU travel nurses than they do for other specialties, to guarantee they have enough expertise to tackle the challenges presented in their job.
The second reason is that some hospitals do not like hiring ICU travel nurses due to their higher pay than permanent staff counterparts. This can have detrimental effects on morale and teamwork within the unit, plus having so many travel nurses on staff is costly for hospitals, straining budgets in the process.