Using travel nurses in your unit can be a good idea for a lot of reasons, such as preventing burnout among your perm nurses, helping with a census level rise, natural staff attrition during a nursing shortage or dealing with a hospital expansion or system conversion.
However, one of the biggest challenges for nurse managers remains to be the integration of travel nurses into the unit and the hospital’s culture.
One way to deal with this challenge is to put yourself in the traveler’s shoes. It may not be realistic for you to do this literally (although it wouldn’t be a bad idea if you can manage it), but there are a lot of resources you can refer to to learn more what travelers go through when they are on assignment. And when you have seen the world through their eyes you will be able to develop procedures that help you integrate them into your unit better.
Here are some resources to look at:
- Healthcare Traveler Magazine – Reading this magazine will give you an in-depth look at the challenges that travel nurses face
- Ultimate Nurse– Reading the questions travel nurses and prospective travel nurses ask each other in forums ss a great way to see the world through their eyes
- Healthcare Travelbook – Spending some time in this social network for travelers will let you see how they relate to each other and rely on each other as resources for coping with the issues travel nurses face
- PAN Travelers– Reading about the issues and concerns raised on this “Voice of Healthcare Travlers” will let you see how travelers view themselves and their status as travelers