A Brief Guide to a Travel Nurse Agency

Complete Guide to Travel Nurse Agency

Travel Nurse Agency: Wouldn’t it be great if you could work at various locations globally, enjoy a flexible schedule, and receive perks and incentives while carrying out your professional responsibilities simultaneously? If you have been a licensed travel nurse for a while now, you would know what the experience is like. Even though it has a lot of benefits, you need to find the right jobs before you can proceed. Finding jobs could be a challenge unless you hire a professional travel nurse agency that will provide you with suitable jobs while taking care of the application, payment method, and other details to ensure that the process is highly convenient and hassle-free. But what are some things you must know before you can take their help? Read on to find out.

Table of Contents

Who are travel nurses?

Travel nurses are registered nurses who actually work for a short time as a non-permanent employee in clinics, hospitals, and other healthcare facilities. Nursing agencies recruit them temporarily to fill in the staffing shortage at various hospitals and clinics. The specific duration of an assignment might vary from one to another. However, most are between four weeks and 13 weeks. A traveling nurse must have at least one year of experience in their specialty. Interestingly, data shows that jobs under this category grew about 44% between 2018 and 2019, with requirements reaching an all-time high during the pandemic as healthcare facilities witnessed staff shortages. A licensed travel nurse must possess various specialized skills related to ICU, telemetry, emergency room, and progressive care room. 

What is a travel nurse agency?

As mentioned earlier, a travel nurse agency fulfills the nursing shortages in hospitals and clinics by hiring and providing them with registered nurses. These agencies also play a vital role for the nurses as it helps them find jobs matching their qualifications, preferences, and other requirements. Without an agency, you might find it challenging to search for jobs, understand the contracts and other legalities involved in them, the number of billables and non-billable hours, payroll processing, and additional related information. Reliable agencies usually have a transparent process that provides you with all the necessary details before beginning your job. 

Why can’t nurses work as independent contractors?

Most nurses do not fit the definition of an independent employee laid down by the IRS. According to that definition, the IRS will not consider you as self-employed if your employer plays a direct role in determining the nature of your work and the manner of its execution and if they possess the legal authority to control the minor and significant processes of the work. In other words, if you are involved in an employeremployee relationship, the Internal Revenue Service will consider you non-independent. It is better to work with a travel agency as a registered nurse at any location you want. 

Things to look for in an agency

Even though you will come across several agencies specializing in travel nursing jobs, it is advisable to do some research to ensure you find a job according to your requirements while not facing any difficulties.

Location of the job

You ought to check the job location and if you are comfortable traveling there. You might have specific preferences for a particular area and have reservations about another. It is better to ask the agency beforehand or browse their website carefully to know the job location and options. 

Nature of the contract

Contracts related to this job involve the agency, nurse, and the hospital or clinic. However, the nurse and agency have an employment contract whose terms both sides must honor. Agreements in this job are of various types, including standard and crisis. The contract also fulfills the role of a tax document besides covering details like benefits, wages, and reimbursements. You must check the nature of the contract and its terms and conditions. It would also be helpful to ask them about the consequences of a contract cancellation during the onboarding process and the steps you should take in such cases.

Do they have an open line of communication?

You might need to contact your agency during your job’s tenure, especially if you face difficulties. It would be helpful if you could access their team or staff quickly to resolve any doubts you might have related to paycheck, documentation, insurance, or anything else. 

How much do they pay?

It is advisable to ask the agency how much they would pay for a particular job. The exact salary would depend on various factors, including profession, specialty, and state. However, a dependable agency would pay you between 4,000 USD$ to 5,000 USD$ as your highest weekly gross pay. 

Insurance policy

You must always select agencies that provide insurance coverage and have transparent policies. For instance, they should inform you of the starting date of your coverage and whether you have the option of changing your insurance plan between jobs. 

A professional travel nurse agency will help you find a job quickly, take care of the various processes like documentation and insurance, inform you regarding work timings, and ensure you receive paychecks on time.

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