Nurses continue to be a much-needed human resource in the healthcare field. With the advent of The Great Resignation and the nursing shortage, more healthcare institutions resolved to open their doors to immigrant nurses to work for them. However, while nurses are held in high regard, their touch on healthcare can only be as effective as their education and training.
As a nurse, your local experience assures your excellence under any medical situation. Hence, you still have the right to accept or refuse any nursing assignment. But as a global nurse, you encounter more diverse circumstances than a local nurse does. This means you should be aware of what your choice entails should you decide to stay as a local nurse or be a global nurse.
In this article, you will be able to practice answering several questions that can help you assess whether you must take a global hiring assignment. We also provide insights for each question so you will have a deeper view of the risks and rewards of being a global nurse.
On Being Helpful to Your Patients
Your ability to become a global nurse is something to applaud for. The college studies, internship training, licensure exam, and local hospital experience have led to this moment – you are taking care of a larger group of patients.
Your versatility and passion as a healthcare worker have grown in the face of difficult odds. But still, a new nursing assignment may sound largely different and even intimidating. To feel more centered, you can ask yourself the following questions to determine the driving force behind your actions as a travel nurse.
1. Where would you like to be assigned and why?
Consider your strengths in the assignments that you will encounter. Experiencing fear is normal when working with a new nursing unit or on a different shift. New people and new workflows may be daunting but remember that even the best nurses started small – exactly where you are.
Be concrete yet gentle with your decision on any assignment. Your superiors may place you in an unfamiliar place to make you grow, but you should also weigh it with your current skills. If you think it would help future patients if you were in a different place, then be honest with it, too.
How can answering this help your patients? BMC Health Services Research stated that patients receive a lower quality of care whenever nurses experience an unstable working environment due to faulty colleague relationships or misunderstandings between patients and professionals. Remember, you can always ask patients and colleagues questions to improve your performance as a nurse.
2. What is your biggest motivator for becoming a travel nurse?
Is it the salary? Is it the experience of meeting new colleagues, new systems, and new patient demographics? Or is it the privilege of moving to different places regularly? Whatever your reason may be, being a travel nurse will have its pros and cons, so it is best if you embrace both the good and the bad.
A study by Avant Healthcare Professionals showed that 90 percent of hospital executives were currently employing travel nurses. In the same way, these leaders offer travel nurses a salary rate of up to $150, compared to non-travel nurses with an offer up to $75. This only shows that choosing to be a travel nurse can help you with your desire to help patients while you earn significantly more than others.
How can answering this help your patients? All these reasons are beneficial, but your greatest drive to work in medical institutions should still be seeing patients progress from their current states. A better salary, greater learnings, and a more diverse experience can be good motivations, but nothing beats the satisfaction of witnessing patients recover from conditions they did not expect to.
3. Are there any clinical factors that may influence your decision on a specific facility?
Do you consider the type of patients that certain institutions cater to? Or the facilities, machines, and services they offer? How about the bed capacity of the facility you want to work in?
There are a variety of healthcare organizations you can choose from once you get to the US, and the number of wards and nursing units can even differ greatly, but your intentions and expertise should still be the greatest driving factor when accepting an assignment.
How can answering this help your patients? You can help your patients most if you know how to handle them and the environment that they are in. For instance, you may be placed in organizations with high-end machines you will only be familiar with once you start. Or you may go to institutions with larger nurse-to-patient ratios and bed capacities than expected. But this should not take away, and instead strengthen, your training and your mindset to provide the best healthcare for your patients.
On Helping Your Future Healthcare Institution
Once you understand how to help your patients, you should learn how to reach organizational goals without deprioritizing patient safety. When weighing your tasks as a professional with the agendas of your institution, remember that everyone involved in the medical field aims to better the health of their patients, so it is better if both of you work hand in hand with your healthcare facility to achieve this.
1. Are you willing to float?
Floating seems difficult for some nurses, while some take this task eagerly. Whatever your perspective is, be clear with your leader about this topic. In doing so, you address each other’s concerns and can find ways to deal with patients with various needs.
Floating has perks, such as float pool nurses getting paid more, but it also has its consequences. But if an assignment is final yet you are still adamant about not floating, you can sign an “Assignment Under Protest” Form and create copies for everyone, including your charge nurse. Proper documentation in case something awry happens within your floating time can save everyone’s time.
How can answering this help patients and organizations? Your employer should understand the right way to handle floating to prevent further setbacks. But you should also consider that floating is a task you should be familiar with to provide optimum healthcare even for patients in varied nursing facilities.
2. What are your most-desired shifts?
Hospitals remain open 24/7, with no delays, to provide constant clinical care to those in need. Consequently, its employees must stay awake even at quiet times to ensure everyone gets appropriate aid.
But nurses who work for patients require the same care for themselves. A 2020 study published in the American Journal of Nursing stated that nurses working 40 hours a week prefer a 10-hour shift while nurses working 36 hours per week prefer a 12-hour shift. This shows that nurses’ preferences are dependent on their physical capabilities and responsibilities outside the workplace.
How can answering this help patients and organizations? When you tell your employer about the shift you prefer, you increase the quality of care for patients and their satisfaction with your institution’s overall service. With the desired shift, your body and morale can work together to guarantee your best shape when performing your duties.
On Taking Care of Yourself
Finally, when you and your organization have found cooperative means to aid patients, you can ask for benefits that will ultimately fortify your physical and mental strength to continue being of good service.
1. What is your ideal weekly take-home pay?
Tell your employers about your expected salary rate. Consider your mortgage, car loans, groceries, and other expenses before coming up with an agreement. This way, you become transparent with your employer and leave nothing unaccounted for.
Nurses are one of the highest-paid medical practitioners aside from physicians. This salary may help your decision, knowing that you work to serve a bigger purpose and, in turn, get paid bigger for your sacrifices.
How can answering this help you and your patients? Consider taking assignments if they will highly serve your patients first and your personal goals second. Payment can be increased according to your experience. It can also depend on the number of patients you handle or if you are considered a nurse leader. Remember that increasing the level of your skills equates to an increase in pay.
2. How important is the option of overtime or guaranteed hours to you?
Sometimes, you will work longer hours to help patients or colleagues. While overtime increases your salary, you could already use that time for personal pursuits. But if your assignment calls you to work overtime, the best way to consider it is as a call of duty, to take care of the people who cannot take care of themselves.
But if you think that other nurses can perform better with the tasks at hand, you can file an “objection” form, which your leaders will then study. Whether you will stay to finish the task or have someone else do it is finally up to them. But when you accept their knowledge and reason, their decisions and guidelines can help you in your professional endeavors.
How can answering this help you and your patients? There is a negative correlation between mandated overtime work and patient satisfaction. But the benefit of additional pay during voluntary overtime hours could also be appealing to some nurses, as you earn the benefit of catering to patients’ needs while gaining financial aid for yourself.
Nursing Assignments: For Patients, Institutions, and Professionals
Use your patients’ safety, high-quality work toward organizational goals, and personal goals as your driving forces. If your assignment adheres to these three things, then you will not regret accepting it, even if the length of travel nurse assignments varies.
BE GLOBALLY COMPETITIVE WITH PRS GLOBAL.
Even if you are a travel nurse, you do not have to work away from your family. With PRS Global, you can reach your dreams with your family right beside you. Most especially, you do not have to worry about shouldering every expense – mental or financial – when you arrive in the US. Our concierge services provide hands-on assistance from the moment you start your journey.
We will ensure you find an employer willing to listen and work with your goals. With our help, the global nursing assignments you receive will better your personal and professional life. Send us a message today, and we will start making you globally competitive.