The Future of Travel Nursing: Top 3 Trends and Opportunities
There’s simply no job like travel nursing. With the ability to combine your passions for helping people and seeing the world, it’s easy to see why it’s such an attractive job for medical professionals. But like many other industries, it’s changing at a rapid pace. So what’s ahead for the future of travel nursing? Let’s take a look at some of the top trends and opportunities available to those entering the field.
Why More Healthcare Professionals Are Considering Travel Nursing
It’s no secret that interest in travel nursing has exploded over recent years. A quick look at the significant benefits it provides nurses makes it easy to understand why. For one, travel nurses typically earn substantially more than their traditional counterparts, helping to pay off student debt more quickly or develop a firm financial foundation for the future.
Travel nursing also provides flexibility that’s unmatched by regular nursing or, indeed, most other careers. Nurses can take time off as needed in between contracts, have a wider choice of potential employers, and decide for themselves whether to stay in one place or move on to somewhere new. This diversity in employers also provides travel nurses with much more diverse experience, making them even more valuable for future gigs.
Finally, there’s no better way to combine a love of medicine and helping people with a chance to travel widely and experience the many incredible sights of the United States. It’s the ability to indulge their wanderlust yet continue their meaningful career that gets many travel nurses hooked on the lifestyle.
Future Trends for Travel Nursing
The job market and medical field are changing every day, sometimes at such a rapid pace that it can be hard to keep up! Still, important advances and future trends in travel nursing promise to dramatically transform the industry in the years ahead. Here are a few of the most impactful.
1. Tech Improvements in Recruiting and Scheduling
In the old days, travel nurses were stuck working with recruiters or other limited resources to find jobs. But this was dramatically upended by the growth of the internet, a process that still continues to bring travel nurses better options and information. These days, search and placement services allow hospitals and other medical facilities to post information directly for potential nurses to check out, who can search for options by location, pay, and other factors. This improves the process for both nurses and medical facilities alike while removing some of the issues that old-school middlemen and recruiters could bring. Additionally, improvements in scheduling tech can help match nurses with the most urgently needed contracts or allow those currently working to more easily pick up extra shifts or take time off.
Telehealth has been around for decades but has seen an explosion in popularity during and following the COVID-19 pandemic. The term refers to any kind of medical appointment conducted via phone, video chat, or sometimes even text messages or email. A typical appointment involves a simple conversation between the doctor, nurse, or other provider, where the patient can explain their issues or symptoms. Medical professionals can offer advice, help arrange for more in-depth, in-person treatments or diagnoses, or even prescribe many common treatments remotely. Some telehealth providers even use remote monitoring tools used by the patient or built into their body to do actual check-ups, even from miles or states apart.
This is a major time-saver for both sides of the appointment, with patients no longer needing to make the trek to the doctor’s office and waste time in the waiting room, and doctors and nurses able to see many more patients per day, helping more people. This can also allow nurses to gain experience with typical conditions and patients from an area before moving there as a traditional traveling nurse. However, while in-person providers are always needed, telehealth could reduce some of the need for medical facilities to hire as many traveling nurses in the future if it continues to expand.
3. Virtual Reality
Virtual reality, in general, is nothing new. But advances in recent years have the potential to significantly change the way telehealth and other remote healthcare are conducted. This can range from realistic training to many possible new ways to interact with patients and provide them with innovative new care or treatment plans. While this may be further off into the future when VR technology is more common, it’s a vital thing for travel nurses to be aware of for the years ahead.
The Future is Now in Travel Nursing
While traveling nurses are certainly nothing new, the medical and tech world they work in is changing every day. It’s more vital than ever for nurses to stay on top of new developments and understand how they affect their careers and their patients. Keep an eye on these key trends and others to ensure you’re always ready for what’s ahead in the nursing world.
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