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Thriving as a Frontline Nurse this Summer: Essential Tips for Success

As a frontline travel nurse, the summer season can present unique challenges and opportunities. During the summer, it can be tough to stay focused when all you can think about is having fun in the sun. However, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the season while fulfilling your crucial role on the front lines. Balancing your demanding role with self-care and adventure is key to making the most of this vibrant time of year. Here are some practical tips to help you thrive this summer: 1. Stay Hydrated and Nourished Summer heat can be intense, especially if you’re moving between different climates. Here are some hydration and nutrition tips: - Drink plenty of water: Aim for at least 8-10 glasses a day. Consider carrying a refillable water bottle with you. - Eat water-rich foods: Incorporate fruits like watermelon, oranges, and strawberries, as well as vegetables like cucumbers and lettuce into your diet. - Balanced meals: Ensure your meals include a good mix of proteins, carbs, and fats to maintain energy levels. 2. Sun Protection Spending time outdoors, whether commuting or enjoying leisure activities, requires proper sun protection: - Sunscreen: Use a broad-spectrum SPF 30 or higher. Reapply every two hours if you’re outside. - Protective Clothing: Wear hats, sunglasses, and light, long-sleeved clothing to protect your skin. - Seek Shade: Whenever possible, find shaded areas to reduce direct sun exposure. 3. Plan Your Travel and Accommodations Being a travel nurse often means moving frequently. To make this easier: - Research Locations: Understand the climate and local attractions of your assignment location. - Housing Options: Look for accommodations that are close to your workplace and have good reviews regarding safety and amenities. - Packing Tips: Pack versatile clothing suitable for both your work environment and outdoor summer activities. 4. Stay Active and Fit Keeping physically active can enhance your mood and energy levels: - Exercise Routine: Incorporate a mix of cardio, strength training, and flexibility exercises. Local parks and gyms can be great resources. - Outdoor Activities: Take advantage of summer weather by hiking, swimming, or cycling in your free time. - Yoga and Stretching: These can help relieve stress and muscle tension from long shifts. 5. Mental Health and Relaxation Balancing work and relaxation is crucial for mental well-being: - Mindfulness and Meditation : Daily meditation or mindfulness exercises can help you stay grounded and reduce stress. - Hobbies and Interests : Pursue hobbies that you enjoy, whether reading, cooking, or exploring new places. - Rest and Sleep: Ensure you get 7-9 hours of sleep. A consistent sleep schedule can significantly improve your overall well-being. 6. Professional Development Use the summer to advance your skills and career: - Continuing Education : Enroll in online courses or workshops that interest you. Also, take assignments at new facilities to further your experience. Fastaff has new assignments daily for frontline nurses. - Networking: Attend local healthcare events or join professional groups to meet other travel nurses. - Reflect and Set Goals: Take some time to reflect on your career goals and set new objectives for your personal and professional growth. 7. Leverage Technology Utilize apps and tools to make your life easier: - Health Apps: As a travel nurse, utilizing general health apps can significantly enhance your well-being and efficiency. By integrating these apps into your daily routine, you can better manage your physical and mental health, ultimately improving your overall job performance and quality of life. - Professional Apps: The Ingenovis Health app is a valuable tool for travel nurses, offering a seamless way to manage your schedule and discover new assignments. By using the app, you can easily track your work hours, set reminders for shifts, and access detailed job descriptions. Additionally, it provides a platform to search for and apply to new assignments that match your preferences and expertise. 8. Stay Connected with Loved Ones Maintaining strong connections with family and friends is important for emotional support: - Regular Communication: Schedule regular calls or video chats. - Share Your Experiences: Keep a blog or social media account to share your adventures and stay connected with your support network. By following these tips, you can ensure a fulfilling and balanced summer, both professionally and personally. Remember, as a travel nurse, you have the unique opportunity to combine your passion for healthcare with the adventure of exploring new places. Make the most of it!

Name : Toni Gillespie Specialty : Med/Surg Tele; ER Number of assignments : 18 Number of years with Fastaff : 21 years 1. Why do you love working with Fastaff? I love working and continue to come back to Fastaff because of my recruiters, the pay, and the fact that they reimburse for license and recertification’s. 2. What do you love about nursing? I love working with clients/patients in general. I love teaching and being able to have time to spend with my patients individually. I am an ER nurse too – I really miss working there – the adrenaline of it all - Helping someone make it back home to their loved ones. 3. What makes travel nursing rewarding for you? The rewarding part of traveling is the different locations and adventures that come with it. Meeting new people that become lifelong friends and of course, depending on locations – the food. Also, because I travel for work. I also travel for personal/play time all over the world. 4. Tell me about a time when you felt more valuable/respected because of the experience and knowledge you gained from your Fastaff assignment. I guess this would be when taking care of my patients and I get or receive their acknowledgement of what a great nurse I am. The appreciation from my patients means everything in this day and time when everyone is easy to anger or saddened by their circumstance. That thank you goes a long way. As far as the staff/co-workers, when they acknowledge and respect your experience and know that you are there to help, however needed. And then they acknowledge you. Well, that’s the cherry on top of the ice cream you saved for last. 5. What has been your most challenging Fastaff assignment and how did you feel that impacted your worth as a nurse afterward? My most challenging Fastaff assignment was during COVID. My grandson at 2 months had just had his 2nd open heart surgery and I had been sick but hiding it from others so that I keep working just in case something fell down the drain. Well, I fell down the drain. The stress took a hold of me. I was barely hanging on emotionally, mentally, and physically. My body just broke and I was out of work for 5 months for emergency surgery, not expected. I could no longer help anyone, not even myself, which is why it is important to take care of yourself first because unless you do that, you are no good for anyone else. 6. Describe the most miraculous or impressive thing you’ve witnessed or been a part of during your time as a nurse with Fastaff. The most miraculous thing I can say being a part of Fastaff is I went from being a Med/Surg Tele nurse to a level 1 ER nurse in 4 hours and never looked back in the 17 years I did it. Fastaff truly changed my life and my specialty. 7. How have you accomplished some of your personal and professional goals by traveling with Fastaff? I have many accomplishments: I can provide for myself, travel the world, meet new friends, and work with some great people, I was able to move into a specialty that I absolutely loved until my body said, that’s enough. I’ve been with Fastaff since the beginning of my travel career - 21 years and they have been here for me.

Name: Katherine Mányai Specialty : Step-down/ Telemetry Number of assignments : 12 Number of years with Fastaff: 7 1. Why do you love working with Fastaff? I love working with Fastaff because of their simplistic work flow. I have succeeded working with them, because of my recruiter. She has impeccable communication skills and is always on top of the intricate steps of contracting. She is dependable at a moments notice and kind at heart. 2. What do you love about your specialty? The complexity of the medical diagnosis 3. What makes traveling rewarding for you? The experiences of diverse cultures in our country and the gained perspectives of caring for people across the nation. 4. Tell me about a time when you felt more valuable/respected because of the experience and knowledge you gained from your Fastaff assignment. At my current assignment, I have been asked many times to share my knowledge, much of which I’ve gained thru working crisis assignments with Fastaff. 5. What has been your most challenging Fastaff assignment and how did you feel that impacted your worth in your profession afterward? My most challenging Fastaff assignment was in Oakland, California; both professionally and personally. My worth was not valued as it would have been in a travel friendly environment but by staying on assignment longer than any other nurse from our company, I found blessings in a difficult place. 6. Describe the most miraculous or impressive thing you’ve witnessed or been a part of during your time traveling with Fastaff. While our nation is experiencing the loss of jobs and businesses, I was selected to help re open a hospital in a small community that has no access to care. To bring hope to a remote area and restore local pride to a close-knit community, has been my greatest joy thus far. 7. How have you accomplished some of your personal and professional goals by traveling with Fastaff? I have been able to reach financial goals during a time of medical hardship for family thanks to the teamwork of my recruiter Savoi Ragsdale

Summer is a time where many people take a well-deserved break from life's daily routine. However, for healthcare facilities that operate around the clock, staff shortages during the summertime can pose a significant challenge. Nurses taking time off, coupled with higher demand for healthcare services, can leave healthcare facilities severely understaffed. When healthcare facilities face a staff shortage, it can impact patient care quality and patient outcomes. This is where Fastaff Travel Nursing comes in. Fastaff is a leading provider of flexible staffing solutions that provide Rapid Response® services to healthcare facilities in need. Our services are unique, cost-effective and are specifically tailored to meet individual hospital's needs, which is why we're trusted by some of the most prestigious healthcare facilities across the country. Our strategic solutions can cover staff shortages for a short-term assignment or a longer-term project – offering a holistic staffing approach that keeps the hospital's workflow uninterrupted during the summer or any other time of the year. During the summer months, staffing levels can be a challenge for many healthcare facilities. With nurses taking time off, it can be hard to find suitable replacements, especially at short notice. Fastaff is well-equipped to handle these staffing shortages. We have a large pool of highly qualified nurses who are ready to hit the ground running and integrate into unit workflow quickly, enabling your healthcare facility to continue providing high-quality patient care. We carefully screen and vet all our nurses to ensure they meet our high standards for competency, professionalism and reliability. At Fastaff, we know that different healthcare facilities have different needs. That's why we offer a wide range of staffing solutions for summer staffing shortages. We provide short-term assignments that cover a couple of weeks, longer length projects that cover several months, and everything in between. Whether you're looking for a high volume, a low supply specialty, additional staff in response to a crisis or vacation coverage, Fastaff is equipped to provide comprehensive staffing solutions. Partnering with Fastaff is easy and stress-free. We have a streamlined process that allows healthcare facilities to request staff quickly and easily. We also offer clear, upfront pricing, so you know exactly what you're getting with your financial commitment. We offer 48-hour work weeks with no overtime expense to your facility, allowing you to provide continuity of care to your patients. And if you need to cancel or change your staffing needs at short notice, no problem - we offer a no fee cancellation policy that allows you to make changes to your staffing plan, by providing a four-shift notice. At Fastaff, we prioritize building long-term partnerships with healthcare facilities. Our team works closely with healthcare leaders to understand your unique staffing needs so that we can tailor our solutions to meet those requirements. As leaders in the industry, we make sure you have a strategic staffing plan in place for whatever challenges come your way. In conclusion, Fastaff provides flexible staffing solutions that are uniquely tailored to meet the varying needs of different healthcare facilities. With a large pool of highly qualified nurses and a streamlined process, Fastaff can provide comprehensive staffing solutions that can cover staff shortages for a short-term assignment or a longer-term project. By partnering with Fastaff, healthcare facilities can ensure continuity of care to your patients, even during the summer months when staffing levels can be a challenge. Contact Fastaff Travel Nursing today to learn how we can help your healthcare facility manage summer staffing shortages.

Name : Lindsey Swoboda Specialty : Operating Room Number of Assignments: 1 Number of years with Fastaff: 2 years Why do you love working with Fastaff? I love working with Fastaff because I believe that it is an agency that truly cares about its travelers. My recruiter has been really great to work with. If I ever have questions, she has always been there to help me. I have had an excellent experience overall with Fastaff, & I’m so glad I was able to work with them for the last two years & look forward to hopefully be with them for more. 2. What do you love about being an OR Nurse? There are so many reasons of why I love being a nurse in the OR. I have truly found my niche in my career & for that I am so grateful! This specialty is very rewarding, even though unfortunately most patients may not remember me after their surgeries. I am able to be an advocate for them when they are in their most vulnerable state & make sure that they are comfortable before, during & after they are asleep. & Contrary to what may be a popular belief, nurses in the OR have to be very quick on their feet & efficient because most days it is a very fast paced environment! It requires excellent time management skills & being able to remember a lot of different surgeries along with the unique preferences of each one according to the surgeon. These include a variety of things, but mostly different positioning, equipment, medications, & dressings. I love the fast pace & challenge of it every day. I do my very best not only for my patients, but to help every surgery run smoothly & try to make everyone’s job easier on the OR team. I truly enjoy what I do! 3. What makes travel nursing rewarding for you? I am so thankful that I made the decision to start travel nursing. It has changed my life for the better in countless ways. I plan to continue to travel in the future as long as it is feasible financially. I truly love the flexibility & being more independent by no longer being a direct employee of a big corporation hospital. 4. Tell me about a time when you felt more valuable/respected because of the experience and knowledge you gained from your Fastaff assignment. I have felt more valuable as a nurse since starting this assignment than I have before in my career. It has shown me that I can jump into a variety of surgeries & remain proficient. & If I’m honest, I wouldn’t necessarily have been able to do that a few years ago. I have proven to myself that over the past ten years of being a nurse, seven of those years being in the OR, that I have gained so much experience, knowledge & confidence in my abilities. 5. What has been your most challenging Fastaff assignment and how did you feel that impacted your worth as a nurse afterward? I have been on the same assignment since starting to travel for the past two years, however that has not gone without challenges. I feel that one of the hardest things to overcome as a travel nurse, is that you have to be able to adapt to many different things when jumping into a new facility. Specifically in the OR for me, means a lot of different kinds of equipment, new rules & policies, different preferences & medications for each surgery & surgeon, & trying to learn where every instrument is kept so I know where to go when the team needs something quickly during a case. To be able to adapt very quickly, while also slowly gaining the trust of people on your team is so important. With that being said, these challenges are also what I love about the OR. There is never a dull moment! 6. Describe the most miraculous or impressive thing you’ve witnessed or been a part of during your time as a nurse with Fastaff. The most impressive thing that I have been a part of during my time as a nurse in the OR, even before this assignment, has always been the pure ambition & ability of the surgery team. I truly love the idea of the entire OR running quickly, yet efficiently because of everyone working together. I often joke with my patients before they fall asleep that we are all a ‘pit crew’ for them because we each have our jobs & work so well together. How have you accomplished some of your personal and professional goals by traveling with Fastaff? Since becoming a travel nurse, I have achieved so many things, both personal & professional. It would be difficult to put them all into words. At first, I was scared of change, but I dived in anyway & never looked back. I have no regrets & have proven to myself that it pays off to chase after your dreams. Again, I truly hope I can continue to travel as long as it is financially feasible. I have grown in so many ways after taking that first step towards travel nursing & I am so very thankful!

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