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Blog & News/The Art of Vicarious Care – My Travel Nurse Experiences

The Art of Vicarious Care – My Travel Nurse Experiences

October 30, 2013

In my travel nurse experiences, no matter where you may go, in every facility, whether a hospital, urgent care, or free clinic, there is one guaranteed constant: Patients. Whether pregnant, sick, injured or just needing comfort, someone needs your help and your expertise. You are a mobile caregiver, a gypsy custodian to the ill, the wandering warden of the injured, and a nomadic healer.

It’s easy to forget that from the home office. Notes are scattered around my desk, I’ve got spreadsheets and deadlines that need my attention. There’s a stack of to-do’s that need to be completed before the next meeting. My plate and my schedule are full and it keeps piling up.  But out there on the road there is someone who needs healing.

Recently, that was me. My wife and I just had our first child, a beautiful baby boy. I am not in the hospital very often, despite working in healthcare, and I had a lot of anxiety. Our Nurse, Whitney, was amazing. She supported us and stayed with us through the thick and thin. She was my rock and she helped calm my nerves.

Whitney cared for my wife, child, and me in a very authentic way. We were strangers until that day and are strangers again now, but during our time in the hospital, she treated us like family. She cared for us, authentically loving and caring about our situation. It was a sobering reminder of what you must give to someone to truly take care of them and it got me thinking.

You see, Whitney was a traveler. And by the time we had recovered, her assignment had ended and she was off to her next adventure. I was never able to send her a card or photo to thank her, but she left a major impact on me. The healing she gave to us lingers.  I started thinking that maybe, at her chosen agency, there is someone just like me, who was responsible for placing her on the assignment. Someone dedicated to recruiting great nurses for great assignments. I would like to shake their hand.

The path of caring in a travel nurse’s experiences extends well beyond the patient and nurse interaction.  When a travel nurse cares for the patient, everyone in that agency also cares for that patient, if only from a distance. Through the nurses who work for us, we care for those in need. I take comfort in that. All of my notes, spreadsheets and to-do’s all point to one thing: finding a nurse a great assignment so that they can care for someone in need.

I get to heal vicariously through you, Traveler, and that’s pretty awesome. From agency to recruiter, from travel nurse recruiter to nurse, from nurse to patient and beyond, we are all connected by the art of healing and caring for one another. We are all part of the healing process, if only remotely. It might sounds cheesy, but I take comfort in knowing that this job makes a difference. It does me good to know that each day, through you; we are making a real impact on people’s lives. So travel on, nurses!! We will all be by your side, if from a distance. We will all be impacted by your healing arts, if only vicariously.

Learn more about becoming a travel nurse today!

About the Author: 

_Benjamin Wayne is a Project Manager with Fastaff Travel Nursing, the industry leader in Rapid Response_℠ staffing. Outside of healthcare, he has a passion for writing, music, cooking and exploring the Colorado outdoors.

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