Recently, I asked recruiters what they would do in these situations. Brandi VanSickle has been a recruiter for 11 years with the last 7 years with FlexRN. Below are her responses:

In a large metropolitan area, Nurse Floating Flo contracts to float between three hospitals within a 10 mile radius of her housing. Starting in the 6th week, the company ask her to float to a hospital 15 miles away, the 7th week she goes to one on the other side of the city, that is 30 miles away, plus one that is 17 miles away. The nurse is willing to take the first few, but after the behavior continues, she has had enough and voices this to her recruiter. 

In this situation I would recall the email or order that states the mileage in which the hospitals the nurse is expected to go and forward it to the appropriate contact with the facility or vendor manager. I would explain the facilities in which the nurse is comfortable going and try to work with them to make sure she is only floating at the facilities the nurse is comfortable floating to. Sometimes it’s all about communication. If that doesn’t work then I would try to incentivize the nurse to travel to the facilities further away but compensating for mileage or gas.

Baby Nurse Betty is a skilled labor and delivery nurse, who also can float to post-pardium care after the delivery as well as the well-newborn nursery. At 7:30pm, the staffing company hotline gets a call stating that they want her to float to the NICU, which is beyond her competency level. What is your company’s response? 

I would notify the facility that she does not have the experience in this higher acuity unit and I am not comfortable with her floating there.

Nurse Roach is all excited about her first travel nursing assignment. She drives 750 miles to her new assignment housing. After getting the keys from management, she opens the door and three cockroaches scurry across the floor. After further investigation, she also finds a ring of mold in the shower. She can’t stand it and immediately texts you with pictures. How do you respond?

I would get in contact with the housing agency or management office and let them know the accommodations are unacceptable and ask to term the agreement or to move her to another housing facility under their management. In the interim I would find a safe and clean hotel for the nurse to stay until we got everything sorted out<

You have worked with Nurse Asthmatic for 3 years now and she has done a great job for you, when she takes an assignment in Southeast Colorado. She envisions magic mountains that reach to the sky, only to find that she has landed in wheat country. Not wanting to cause problems she continues to work and everything is fine, until harvest. She has an asthma attack, ends up in the hospital, and is told that she is going to miss at least 2 weeks of work related to asthma induced pneumonia. How do you work things out?

The best way to work this out is to have a doctors note stating the nurse is asthmatic and exactly what happened in the most recent attack. I would share this with the hospital and leave it up to the nurse if she wants to return. The health and safety of our nurses are one of our biggest priorities. If she does not we would find another contract where she would feel her healthiest.

You have worked hard to find Nurse Roulette a job in Las Vegas. You send the nurse a contract that she readily accepts, signs, and sends back. The next morning the bags are packed and Nurse Roulette is on the way to the assignment of her dreams. At 0800 she is out the door and to the hospital. Checking in with HR, they inform her that there is no contract between the hospital and the company, related to the fact that it has not been approved by HR. About the same time, the recruiting manager comes to you and tells you not to send Nurse Roulette on the assignment. This shouldn’t have happened, but unfortunately it does happen. What do you do? 

Besides recalling the signed documents from the facility and sharing with them and getting all details as to what happened, I would contact the nurse and would immediately try to find another assignment in the same area and cover the nurses expenses until we could find her an assignment she is happy with.

Finals Words to Traveling Healthcare Professionals:

One of the most important things for a travel nurse to know is to be reliable and dependable. The hospitals need travel nurses for coverage so it’s important to be there and on time when you’re scheduled. Another thing is to know what you’re looking for in an agency and to interview them as well. Ask them all the details of payroll, insurance, facility requirements etc. so there are no surprises after signing with the agency. Also, communicate with your recruiter with any type of concerns, including clinical issues. Communication is key! Lastly, sometimes getting offers for the best contracts, as far as rate and locations, depends on timing so always having your compliance documents up to date and in a PDF file can assure a timely submittal to the contract of your dreams!

Highway Line

If you would like to work with Brandi Vansickle, you can email her at…


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Highway Line