Are you someone who appreciates navigating new and unexpected terrain? If so, urgent care travel nursing might be the career you are looking for.
Urgent care offers variety by virtue of being available to people of all ages with health circumstances of all kinds. Travel nursing, by nature, allows you to become acquainted with unfamiliar places. Put the two together and you have an inviting blend of novelty and challenge that can keep your professional life stimulating.
Trusted Nurse Staffing serves nurses like you who wish to find positions of this kind and have reliable career support while on assignment. We can help you with your transition to being an urgent care travel nurse.
Read on for a summary of what you should consider as you contemplate a potential career change.
Table of Contents
- What Is an Urgent Care Travel Nurse?
- Urgent Care Travel Nurse Jobs: What Does an Urgent Care Travel Nurse Do?
- How Do You Become an Urgent Care Travel Nurse?
- FAQs Regarding Urgent Care Travel Nursing
- Are You Ready To Start Your Career as an Urgent Care Travel Nurse? Trusted Nurse Staffing Can Help
What Is an Urgent Care Travel Nurse?
An urgent care travel nurse works in urgent care settings and provides triage services to patients, among other responsibilities. A contract for an urgent care travel nurse generally specifies working in an urgent care facility for 13 weeks.
Most people seek urgent care if they have an illness or injury that isn’t life-threatening but requires prompt care. Their situation isn’t dire enough to require a visit to the emergency room, but they can’t wait for a standard appointment with their primary care doctor.
People commonly visit an urgent care facility for afflictions such as:
- Respiratory illnesses, such as colds, flu, or RSV
- Urinary tract infections
- Ear infections
- Pink eye
- Allergic reactions
- Insect bites
- Minor injuries
An urgent care travel nurse assesses patients who present with these kinds of problems, provides appropriate treatment, and informs patients about what they should understand about their condition as well as what to do next.
What Does an Urgent Care Travel Nurse Do?
An urgent care travel nurse typically performs various tasks. These include:
- Triaging patients’ conditions: Checking vital signs, listening to patient’s complaints, and determining the urgency of each case.
- Ordering diagnostic testing, such as X-rays or labs.
- Reviewing medical history: Collecting information about allergies, medications, and health background.
- Diagnosing and treating minor illnesses or injuries.
- Suturing lacerations or splinting fractures.
- Administering medications and IVs.
- Educating about treatment plans, prescriptions, and further care.
- Documenting care: Providing records of assessments, treatments, and patient education in the recording software in use at your facility.
- Discharging patients: Giving instructions for discharge, prescriptions, and follow-up care plans.
- Collaborating with other healthcare providers, especially in complex cases.
Urgent Care Travel Nurse Jobs: Where Do Urgent Care Travel Nurses Work?
Assignments can be in any of the following settings:
- A standard urgent care community clinic
- An urgent care clinic in a hospital
- A retail clinic
- An occupational medicine clinic
- A school health center
Places that often have a high demand for urgent care travel nurses year-round include busy clinics in growing suburban or major metropolitan areas and rural clinics where experienced nurses are hard to find.
Seasonal demand for travel nurses increases anywhere there are disease outbreaks or natural disasters, as well as at tourist destinations at certain times of the year.
How Do You Become an Urgent Care Travel Nurse?
If you aspire to become an urgent care travel nurse, consider the following requirements.
You must have either a BSN or ADN, then sit for the NCLEX to earn your RN license. If you are reading this, you likely have already completed this step. Consult Trusted Nurse Staffing to learn more about transitioning from regular nursing to travel nursing.
If you wish to become an urgent care nurse practitioner, you will need an advanced nursing degree, either a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). These 2-3 year programs provide advanced coursework and training to give expertise in many areas, including:
- Treatment planning
- Prescribing medications
- Ordering tests and imaging
- Otherwise managing illness
Earning an advanced degree allows you to develop these skills and improve your ability to work in fast-paced settings.
Most travel nursing agencies require at least 1-2 years of working as an RN before they will consider hiring someone as a travel nurse. This amount of time varies among facilities, but the consensus is around 2 years.
It may seem like a lot of time, but when you find yourself in an unfamiliar place, you will be thankful for the experience that makes your job second nature. When you are comfortable enough carrying out the procedures you have practiced, that is a load of stress that need not burden you while you are adjusting to a new environment.
Clinical experience is earned, first, during schooling through supervised practicums at hospitals, clinics, and facilities. Then you can gain experience during full-time work in similar settings.
Licensure and Certifications
A student of nursing must pass the NCLEX to begin practicing as an RN. Urgent care nurses also need Basic Life Support (BLS) certification that includes CPR and AED machine use.
Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) and Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certification are sometimes also required.
Other helpful certifications include the Trauma Nurse Core Course (TNCC) and Certified Emergency Nurse (CEN), which can help an urgent care nurse determine whether a patient would be better served in the emergency room.
Obtain Multi-state License
The Nurse Licensure Compact allows travel nurses to work in other states outside of the one where they obtained their RN license. As long as the state a nurse travels to participates in the compact, there is no need to apply for a new state license. Currently, there are 35 participating states.
Requirements for uniform licensure include an RN license, a satisfactory background check, proficiency in English, and participation solely in the Nurse
Licensure Compact with respect to multi-state licensing.
FAQs Regarding Urgent Care Travel Nursing
How Much Does an Urgent Care Travel Nurse Make?
On average in the United States, urgent care travel nurses make about $120,000 per year, as opposed to $112,000 for regular urgent care nurses. The amount varies depending on several factors, including:
- Your experience level and certifications
- What specialty you are in
- Who you use as your travel nurse agency
- What shift you work: Night shift nurses get paid more than day shift nurses.
- Your location: The highest-paying states for travel nursing are California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Oregon, and Alaska.
As an urgent care travel nurse with Trusted Nurse Staffing, you have opportunities to maximize your income and also receive benefits, stipends, and other perks. Use our Pronto job search tool to find high-paying urgent care travel nursing jobs.
What Are Some Qualities of a Great Urgent Care Travel Nurse?
To be a great urgent care nurse, you must have strong clinical skills for the assessment and treatment of patients of any age and effective communication skills for educating patients and families on topics relevant to their situation.
Other personal characteristics that commend a person to the nursing profession are:
- Friendliness, kindness, and ability to demonstrate caring
- A positive, open-minded attitude
- Capacity for growth, new learning, and dealing with change
- Critical thinking and attention to detail
- Organized approach to work
These qualities indicate the high level of maturity required in an urgent care nurse. Beyond these qualities, a travel nurse in particular needs to be flexible, resilient, and adaptable in different work settings.
Where Are the Most Opportunities for Urgent Care Travel Nurses?
While urgent care travel nurses are needed potentially anywhere, you can count on some places being in greater need than others. In such places, there will be less competition for the competent applicant to acquire a desirable position.
Areas where urgent care travel nurses can expect a high demand for their services include:
- Anywhere during peak seasons for flu, RSV, etc.
- Big, overcrowded cities with busy clinics.
- Growing suburban communities.
- Small towns with poor healthcare access.
- Sites of recent natural disasters.
- Tourist areas, such as national parks, amusement parks, and ski resorts, at least during part of the year.
What Are the Benefits of Becoming an Urgent Care Travel Nurse?
Being an urgent care travel nurse can help you grow in many ways, including:
- Financially: You can earn a high salary and receive top benefits with Trusted Nurse Staffing, as well as stipends for housing, meals, and travel.
- Professionally: You will gain experience, learn new skills, and have greater networking opportunities.
- Personally: Flexible contracts and vacations between assignments permit you to spend a significant amount of time with friends and family. Working with new people in new settings can help you grow in terms of cultural awareness and adaptability.
Besides these areas of growth, you can rest easily knowing that, as an urgent travel nurse, you have job security in your field. Between 2020 and 2023, the demand for travel nurses was almost six times the demand in previous years.
Whereas nursing is known to be a career that can lead to burnout, travel nursing offers sufficient time off as well as reinvigorating changes in settings that allow nurses to relieve some of the strain of their role as caregivers.
Are You Ready To Start Your Career as an Urgent Care Travel Nurse? Trusted Nurse Staffing Can Help
If urgent care travel nursing sounds like a welcome challenge and you wish to begin the process of making it happen, contact Trusted Nurse Staffing today to speak with a representative who can answer any specific questions you may have.
Or, try out the Pronto job search to see what positions might be available in the area where you hope to work.
When you join Trusted Nurse Staffing, the representative that manages your case will:
- Consider your education and experience and tailor your resume for the position you wish to apply for.
- List for you the positions that best align with your interests and availability.
- Put you in contact with the hiring managers of your most desired positions.
- Discuss with you the details of jobs you may be offered.
- Help you navigate the preliminary screenings, onboarding requirements, etc. prior to starting the job you accept.
We can help you with every step of the hiring process, advocate for you while on assignment, and counsel you during times of difficulty or change in your work. We look forward to assisting you in your professional goals.