3 Things to Know About the eNLC

Are you ready for the new and improved eNLC?

Are you ready for the new and improved eNLC?

Since 2000, the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) has allowed nurses to provide care in multiple, participating states with just one license. Now, 25 member states and several years later, the National Council of State Boards of Nursing is giving the NLC a makeover.

The new compact, known as the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC), will be effective on January 19, 2018. Among other additions, the eNLC adopted 11 uniform licensure requirements and revised its policy on federal criminal background checks.

So, what does that mean for you, the travel nurse? Here are the top 3 things you should know about the eNLC implementation process:

  1. Not all current NLC member states will be in the new eNLC. The NCSBN enacted the eNLC on July 20, 2017 when 26 states passed eNLC legislation. However, other states needed more time to become eNLC members, hence the January go-live date. During this transitional phase, some states have passed legislation, others are in the process, and a few states, like Colorado, Wisconsin, New Mexico, and Rhode Island, will remain in the original NLC. 
  1. The eNLC has a few new members. The good news is that Wyoming, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Georgia, and Florida are now part of the eNLC club. So, that means travel nurses who meet the new eNLC requirements will have additional states in which they can practice. 
  1. These changes could affect you. According to the NCSBN’s website, travel nurses in eNLC states that were members of the original NLC may be grandfathered in. There are a few exceptions. If you obtained your perm state compact license on or after July 20, 2017, then you will need to meet the new eNLC requirements. Additionally, if you are in a state that was not part of the original NLC, but will be a part of the eNLC, then you will need to update your license to be eNLC compliant. Note that if you are in a state that has passed eNLC legislation, you will no longer have privileges in Colorado, Wisconsin, New Mexico or Rhode Island. You can, however, get a single state license for these states.

Want more information on the eNLC implementation process and where your state stands? We have a few helpful resources for you:

eNLC FAQs

NCSBN’s Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact Implementation 

The Nurse Licensure Compact

Share

The Case for Travel Nurse Recruiters

A great recruiter can be your friend and guide during your travel nurse journey.

A great recruiter can be your friend and guide during your travel nurse journey.

Travel nurses and their recruiters are a dynamic duo in the healthcare staffing industry. Like peanut butter and jelly or mac and cheese, one without the other is unthinkable. That is, until now.

Nomad Health, a site that directly connects freelance doctors to healthcare systems without a middleman, recently expanded their services to travel nurses as well.

Before you jump on the recruiter-free bandwagon, you should carefully consider all the advantages you have with a recruiter on your side:

Pay: According to Nomad’s website, travel nurses will automatically earn more money since medical facilities are saving on recruiter fees. Taken at face value, this statement seems to make sense. However, you should keep in mind that no two bill rates are the same, so there’s really nothing “automatic” about better pay. In fact, in some cases, a recruiter can actually help you advocate for a better compensation package.

Jobs: Without recruiters, Nomad claims you can find job opportunities on your own terms. While that certainly sounds liberating, it’s simply not true. As a travel nurse, you don’t have to take any job you don’t want. Likewise, a great recruiter is your partner in your job search, and that means he or she can help you land your dream job. Your recruiter knows what hospitals are looking for in a candidate, so he or she can offer you sound career advice when needed. Plus, as an industry insider, your recruiter may know of jobs that haven’t even been advertised yet.

Safety Net: Besides job opportunities and pay, travel nurses also need to consider their safety while on assignment. In an ideal world, your travel nursing assignment would go off without a hitch, but that’s unfortunately not always the case. Just look at Travel Nursing Central’s Sticky Situations Q&A section! Your recruiter is your friend and safety net when something unexpected happens to you while on assignment. When you think of the alternative, who would you call? The Ghostbusters?

So, while it’s tempting to ditch your recruiter, this model probably wouldn’t add up to an overall amazing travel nursing experience. A recruiter offers you several advantages including industry knowledge, career advice, and a helpful ear should something unexpected happen.

What do you think? Is a recruiter-free agency appealing or do you plan to stick with your recruiter? Let us know in the comments below!

Share

Travel Nurse News Updates: 4 Things to Know

Extra! Extra! Read all about healthcare and travel nursing news this week.

Extra! Extra! Read all about healthcare and travel nursing news this week.

Before you hit the road for your next travel assignment, take a moment to read Travel Nursing Central’s rundown of travel nurse news from this week:

What Nurses Can Expect with a Potential ACA Replacement: Although the American Health Care Act recently failed on the House floor, the issue of healthcare reform isn’t likely to go away. The Gypsy Nurse blog and healthcare staffing agency Travel Nurse Across America take an in-depth look at how a potential ACA repeal and replacement would affect nurses and travel nurses. Read the full blog post here.

Florida to Become a Compact State: In other travel nurse news, Florida lawmakers recently announced that the state will join the ranks of 25 other states participating in the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). The NLC allows RNs and licensed practical/vocational nurses to have one multistate license, with the ability to practice in both their home state and other NLC states. The law will go into effect on December 31, 2018. To learn more about Florida’s new law, click here.

Trav Con 2017 Registration Now Open: Trav Con 2017, the “Super Bowl” of travel nursing conferences, is now accepting early registrations. Located in Las Vegas, this year’s annual networking event is September 17-19th.  Dr. Damania aka ZDogg MD, an internist who also moonlights as a stand-up comedian for medical audiences, is the 2017 keynote speaker. You can learn more about this year’s schedule of speakers here.

ANA Webinar to Focus on Mindfulness for Nurses: Busy travel nurses know that self-care is a must, especially if you want to provide quality care for your patients. Earn one CEU while learning how to practice the art of mindfulness in the American Nurses Association’s upcoming webinar on “Living & Working Mindfully.” It’s not too late to sign up — the live webinar is on April 19th and costs $45. You can register for it here.

Share

Zika Virus Hits the U.S.: 4 Things Travel Nurses Should Know

Late last week, healthcare officials’ fears were realized when several local cases of the Zika virus were identified in Miami. This is the first time cases of the Zika infection in the U.S. haven’t been linked to South American travel. Infections are expected to increase in parts of the U.S.  So, it’s important for all travel nurses, especially those currently working in Florida, to keep updated on the recent Zika news.  Here’s what travel nurses should know:

The Zika virus has spread to Florida. Learn how you can protect yourself and your patients.

The Zika virus has spread to Florida. Learn how you can protect yourself and your patients.

  1. Pregnant women should avoid travel to Miami: Earlier this spring, pregnant women were warned about traveling to South America due to the link between Zika infections in pregnant women and severe birth defects in their newborns. However, as a result of these new findings, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded that travel ban to include the Wynwood neighborhood in downtown Miami. This is the first time the CDC has advised people not to travel to a place in the continental United States.
  1. The Zika virus can be sexually transmitted: Although only certain mosquitoes are responsible for most Zika cases, the infection can also be sexually transmitted. As a healthcare provider, you should caution both male and female patients who have recently traveled to Zika-affected areas to abstain from sexual intercourse for at least eight weeks. The virus has been known to remain in bodily fluids long after the symptoms are gone. If your patient is already pregnant and has recently traveled to Miami, you should advise her to get tested for Zika. This particular patient will also want to use condoms or avoid sex throughout the duration of her pregnancy.
  1. Prevention is key: If you or your patients are living in a Zika zone like Florida, you should take all necessary precautions. This includes staying indoors as much as possible, covering up, and wearing insect repellent such as Deet to prevent infection. If one of your patients does become infected, he or she will need to see a doctor right away. If a pregnant woman becomes infected, she will need to be carefully monitored throughout her pregnancy.
  1. Don’t panic: While the news seems grim, your patients don’t need to panic just yet. Only the Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes have been known to transmit the infection, and these mosquitoes must have bitten someone who’s infected in order to spread the virus to someone else. The CDC expected to see outbreaks of Zika in the U.S. where these types of mosquitoes are common. Florida is one of these areas. Fortunately, healthcare officials do not believe the outbreaks here will be as severe as the ones in South America.

To learn more about the latest Zika virus in Florida, you can visit the CDC’s website here.

Are you currently working in Florida as a travel nurse? If so, what steps are you taking to protect yourself and your patients?

Share

Future Hiring Trends Look Bright for Travel Nurses

When the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, healthcare in America changed forever. By 2022, the number of nursing jobs is expected to increase by 1.05 million. Likewise, travel nurses will also become a vital resource as the healthcare industry struggles to meet this growing demand.

Check out this infographic from Norwich University’s Master of Science in Nursing Program to learn more about how the Affordable Care Act affected the nursing industry. 

Share

5 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Travelers Conference 2016

Travelers Conference 2016

Travelers Conference 2016 is coming soon! Are you ready?

Whether you are new to the travel nursing industry or an expert in the field, there’s something for everyone at the Travelers Conference. Known as TravCon, this year’s weekend-long event, held September 25-27, promises to be the networking “Super Bowl” for traveling healthcare professionals. So that begs the question, are you ready for the 2016 TravCon in Las Vegas? Here are 5 tips for getting the most out of Travelers Conference 2016, so you can have a fun and productive weekend:

  1. Research: Before you even register or book your flight to Vegas, you should do your homework. Research which staffing agencies will be there, and determine which ones fit your criteria. You don’t want to waste your time at this conference talking to a recruiter whose company doesn’t fit your needs. Keep in mind what you are looking for in a potential employer, including the company’s reputation, benefits packages offered, traveling jobs available, and pay. Travel Nursing Central is a great place to start your research. Check out our agency rankings here.
  1. Connect: This event is a great opportunity for you to gain more insight into the traveling healthcare profession. Find the companies you researched as top performers, and introduce yourself to a recruiter. It’s usually helpful to put a face to a company. If you already have a great relationship with your staffing agency, this can also be a good time to introduce your travel nursing friends to your current recruiter. After all, this is how networking is done.
  1. Ask Questions: This seems obvious for a newbie traveler, but even a veteran traveler can learn new things by asking questions. It’s also important to ask the right questions. If you’re new to the industry, find out what it takes to be a successful traveling healthcare professional. If you’ve been around the block before, maybe now is the time to determine what you need to do to take your career to the next level. For the record, TravCon offers more than 25 sessions over the course of the weekend, and many qualify for CEU credits.
  1. Listen: Most people assume that networking is all about selling yourself as a potential employee to a company. You end up doing all of the talking, but learn practically nothing about the job or company. At the end of the day, networking is simply having a conversation. It’s important to remember that conversations are two-way streets. So, ask your burning questions, but then, really listen to the answer. Maybe a company you researched isn’t quite as great as it looked on paper, or perhaps a recruiter helped calm your fears about traveling with their agency.
  1. Follow Up: What happens at TravCon, shouldn’t always stay at TravCon. It’s always a good idea to follow up with the people you met. Whether it was a recruiter or just a new fellow travel nurse, you never know where these new connections will take you. In the age of social media, it’s also pretty easy to do. Connect with your new contacts on Facebook or LinkedIn and send a message. These relationships could be the start of a new career or friendship!

 With these 5 tips, you’ll be sure to get the most out of your 2016 TravCon experience.  To learn more about the conference, or to register for sessions, visit their website here.

For those travelers who have experienced TravCon before, do you have any other tips for what to expect during this conference? What worked and what didn’t?

Share

4 Things Travel Nurses Need to Know About Latest Superbug Gene

Super bug

A drug-resistant superbug, known as mcr-1 gene, has appeared for the first time in the U.S. Travel nurses need to be aware of the risks associated with this superbug.

Researchers recently reported a drug-resistant superbug gene has appeared for the first time in the U.S. Healthcare professionals are understandably concerned for the safety of their patients and the general population as a whole. In particular, travel nurses must stay vigilant as the nature of their jobs requires them to relocate to different facilities year round. Below are the top 4 things travel nurses should know about the latest superbug gene.

  1. It’s known as the mcr-1 gene: The latest superbug gene, called mcr-1, was found in a Pennsylvania woman with an e-coli infection last month. In her case, the gene mutated the e-coli bacteria to be resistant to colistin, a medication among a handful of antibiotics that can still treat drug-resistant strains of bacteria. Fortunately, her case was treatable with other last-ditch effort antibiotics.
  1. The gene can spread between species of bacteria: The mcr-1 gene is located on a tiny bit of DNA called a plasmid, which is easily transferable between species. Bacteria can mutate quickly, but the plasmid provides an extra shortcut. What scientists and healthcare professionals are worried about is the potential rise of a giant superbug. Hypothetically, the mcr-1 gene could pass on its traits to another bacterium with other mutations and create a giant superbug. This giant superbug would be resistant to all known antibiotics, and could throw civilization back to the era before prescription drugs.
  1. It’s nasty, and there are others out there: This mutant gene was first found in China in 2015, and since then it’s been popping up around the world. It’s also been found in a range of bacteria. Since the woman in Pennsylvania hadn’t traveled recently, it means that the mcr-1 gene has probably been flying under the radar in the U.S. for a while. Although this gene isn’t the giant superbug, it’s still hard to treat. The mcr-1 gene was resistant to several other classes of antibiotics, including fluoroquinolones.
  1. Your patients could be carriers of superbugs: For years, it’s been known that drug-resistant strains of bacteria have the potential to be found on medical equipment, and even occasionally healthcare workers themselves. However, a recent study conducted by the University of Michigan found that 25 percent of hospital patients tested had some sort of drug-resistant germ on their hands when they were discharged from the hospital.

The superbug may be a scary prospect, but arming yourself with knowledge can help protect you and the patients you serve. Click here to refresh your training on basic infection control and personal protective equipment guidelines. To learn more about the mcr-1 gene, you can read the published study in the journal Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy here.

As a healthcare professional, what are your thoughts on the latest news regarding the mcr-1 gene?

Share

Nurses Week 2016!

Nurses Week 2016

Celebrate Nurses Week 2016 in style with fun stuff and freebies from industry organizations! Click here to check out WeLoveOurNurses.com.

It’s almost time for Nurses Week 2016! Travel Nursing Central would like to wish all of the awesome travel nurses out there an amazing celebration!

Here are a few cool things going on this Nurses Week that we wanted to share with you:

Over at WeLoveOurNurses.com, you can enter two contests, win a scholarship, watch a world record be set, and send out eCards to your friends and co-workers.  Medical Solutions is sharing its We Heart RNs World Record Video featuring Miss Colorado, Nurse Kelley Johnson. There’s also the #NurseLaughLove Instagram Contest, Show ’em the Love Mentor Contest, and free, shareable Nurses Week eCards. Gift cards from Amazon, Ulta, and Tafford Uniforms ranging from $50-$250 are the prizes up for grabs. Students will want to enter the 5th Annual Nurses of Tomorrow Scholarship Contest, which awards three $2,000 scholarships to future nurses.

The Gypsy Nurse is known for having created an amazing community for travel nurses. She will honor a 2016 Gypsy Florence Nightingale with a total prize package of approximately $600 in value that includes free admission to the 2016 Travelers Conference in Las Vegas. Nurses can nominate fellow travelers who they think positively represent travel nursing and inspires others in their travel nursing journeys. The Gypsy Nurse is accepting submissions through May 10!

Cinnabon is celebrating Nurses Week again this year with some sweet treats for nurses. May 6-12, 2016, nurses can visit participating Cinnabons, present their healthcare ID badge, and receive a free Cinnabon Classic Roll or MiniBon!

The Right Solutions is hosting a Nurses Week contest that will give away an Apple iPad Air2 and cash prizes to lucky travelers.

Fastaff is celebrating with a Nurse Family giveaway, based on the idea that nurses collect a family of colleagues as they band together to get their challenging work accomplished. Entrants can honor a member of their “nurse family” for the chance to win a $500 Southwest Airlines gift card for both parties.

At DiscoverNursing.com, Johnson & Johnson’s Campaign for Nursing’s Future has free nurse-themed magnets, coloring books, a “Nurses Heal” pin, and many other great and free resources for nurses and nurse educators like videos and software, brochures, posters, and more.

Lippincott Nursing Center is offering discounts on some CE activities and books, free games and articles, an opportunity to share your nursing story and win a FitBit Alta, and more!

So, that’s a good start, but what other Nurses Week fun, contests, free stuff, and other festivities do you know about? Please feel free to share yours in the comments!

Happy Nurses Week 2016, everybody!

Share

Travel Nursing Central’s Top Travel Nurse Companies for 2016

There are SO many travel companies out there. It can be daunting for travelers and aspiring travelers to even know where to begin looking for the right fit.

Luckily there are a few sites, such as yours truly, and Highway Hypodermics, which do an annual rankings roundup of the best travel nurse companies around.

The great thing about TNC and Highway Hypodermics’ methodology is that both use actual travel nurses’ reviews to create their lists! Of course, the perfect company can be different for every traveler depending upon what you’re looking for in an agency, benefits, etc. — but these traveler-derived lists go a LONG way in giving you a starting point from which to find your perfect company.

Without further ado, click here to check out Travel Nursing Central’s Top Travel Nurse Companies for 2016.

Share

Travel Nurses Day 2015!

Travel Nurses Day 2015!

Click here to celebrate Travel Nurses Day 2015 and win prizes!

Travel Nurses Day 2015 is almost here!

This October 9, 2015, will mark the third annual Travel Nurses Day celebration.

In honor of Travel Nurses everywhere, Medical Solutions created and celebrated the first Travel Nurses Day in 2013.

This year the celebration at TravelNursesDay.com includes:

  • The “Signs You’re a Travel Nurse” Instagram Photo Contest
  • Quizzes — “Where should I travel next?” and “Which on-screen nurse are you?”
  • Travel Libs
  • Photo Hunts

Besides the fun of all of that, there are tons of great prizes to be won, totaling more than 2,000 in value! Here’s what Travel Nurses are eligible to win one of this year:

“Signs You’re a Travel Nurse” Instagram Contest
1 – $500 Cash Grand Prize
3 – Fitbit Charge HR ($150 value each)
3 – $100 hotel credits, courtesy of Travelers Haven

Travel Libs, Photo Find and Travel Nurse Quizzes:
3 – $50 Tafford Gift Cards, courtesy of Tafford Uniforms
2 – $50 Amazon Gift Cards, courtesy of Nebraska Methodist College
6 – $50 Zappos Gift Cards
6 – $50 Amazon Gift Cards

You can visit TravelNursesDay.com anytime between now and midnight on October 8. Prize winners will be announced on the big day!

Happy Travel Nurses Day to all of you great Travelers out there!

 

Share