Nurses are on their feet, all day, every day—especially travel nurses who are always going. With demanding work, long shifts, and working to get everything done, feet can suffer. Painful feet, swollen ankles, varicose veins, and even blood clots can arise from the stress. So it’s critical to take good care of your feet. A good pair of compression socks can help tremendously.
Compression socks work to alleviate the issues that nurses face being on their feet all day. The tight fabric can assist circulation in the feet and legs and help reduce pain and swelling—immensely important for the busy travel nurse. They also work to increase blood flow and oxygen, not just in your feet and legs, but in your whole body. Next to your nursing shoes, compression socks are one of the best purchases you can make for the longevity of your feet and legs.
How to Pick Compression Socks
No doubt nurses will be familiar with this unit as a measure of blood pressure through millimeters of mercury. Compression socks are categorized in strengths using this same unit—the higher the mmHg, the thicker and tighter the sock. Not including prescription-level, compression socks come in three degrees of strength: mild, medium, and firm.
Mild compression socks provide only a slight level of compression and will have an mmHg of between eight and 15. For busy travel nurses, this may not be strong enough to fight pain and poor circulation.
Medium level compression socks are what most nurses use and measure between 15-20 mmHg. This level of compression should provide a good amount of relief from long periods of standing and walk.
Lastly, a firm-level of compression measures between 20 and 30 mmHg and should be reserved for the most intense workers who need an extreme level of compression support. They can relieve moderate to intense swelling, orthostatic hypotension, and even deep vein thrombosis.
The Best Compression Socks for Nurses in 2021
Now that you know the differences and details of compression socks, you can start shopping for a good pair—or two! Below are a few of our favorites for 2021.
Figs Compression Socks
Figs is renowned for their healthcare attire, and along with their scrubs and shoes, they also make some fantastic compression socks that are functional and very stylish. Whether you’re looking for a simple single color or some socks with snazzy prints, Figs has you covered—literally and figuratively. Figs compression socks are reasonably priced too. A tall pair will run you around $30, while a plain pair of ankle-highs will set you back just $12.
Nurse Mates is known for making great nurse shoes. Their expertise extends into the realm of compression socks too. Their socks run the gamut of plain and professional to quirky and fun, offering nearly 100 options to choose from, including tie-dye, polka dots and stripes. Regardless of your style preference, Nurse Mates has something to fit. Nurse Mates has a huge selection of compression socks, and they start at around $9 per pair and go up to around $35.
Poppy Scrubs Compression Socks
Poppy Scrubs is another clothing company for nurses that you’ve probably heard of. They make incredibly comfortable shirts, scrubs, and, of course, compression socks. Poppy Scrubs doesn’t offer the same selection as Nurse Mates or Figs, but their socks are incredibly high-quality and durable, offering yarn-based compression socks in the firm level of compression. And at around $25 per pair, they’re affordable too!
Keep Your Feet Happy
Whether you’re a travel nurse or one of the at-home heroes, you know all too well how demanding your field is. You’re always on the go, day in and day out, and sometimes your feet can pay the price. Do yourself a favor and invest in a pair of compression socks to keep them happy.
And if you’re a travel nurse that’s on the lookout for your next assignment, don’t hesitate to search for your next position with Stability Healthcare—we’re happy to help you find the perfect position!Read More
Post-anesthesia nurses are highly popular and needed in almost every medical environment. They’re specialized nurses providing care for patients who have gone under anesthesia. This is particularly important since sometimes patients can experience side effects of anesthesia or have trouble regaining consciousness. Post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) nurses can enjoy a long and rewarding career in their field, often finding employment in many settings. If a career as a PACU nurse intrigues you, keep reading to learn about what you need to know to start your path toward becoming one.
What is a Post Anesthesia Nurse?
As their name states, post-anesthesia nurses care for patients who have gone under anesthesia. They observe and treat patients post-operation to make sure they safely awake from anesthesia. PACU nurses care for vital signs, measure consciousness levels, and ensure sedation is wearing off properly.
Unlike operating room nurses, PACU nurses take care of patients once they leave the operating room. Similarly, PACU nurses are not mistaken with nurse anesthetists, who have specialized and advanced nursing degrees.
National average salary: $94,966 per year
Job outlook: 12% increase by 2028
Where Do Post-Anesthesia Nurses Work?
Post-anesthesia nurses work in the post-anesthesia care unit in hospitals. While this is a critical care unit, patients here have gone under anesthesia but do not need close monitoring like in an ICU. Sometimes PACU nurses can find employment in other medical facilities that provide treatments that require anesthesia, such as testing facilities and ambulatories.
What Kind of Patients Are in a Post-Anesthesia Care Unit?
Patients in the post-anesthesia care unit aren’t in any danger. These patients have gone under anesthesia and are transferred here for close monitoring until they’re fully awake. These patients haven’t undergone any major surgical procedure that requires intensive care. Otherwise, patients would be transferred to the ICU instead.
What Does a Post-Anesthesia Nurse Do?
PACU nurses work in the recovery room, becoming one of the first people they see after a procedure. Because some patients experience side effects such as nausea, fear, agitation, and difficulty breathing, post-anesthesia nurses are there to care for and monitor their progress. Sometimes, PACU nurses may also be responsible for helping patients stand and completing the discharge process.
Post-anesthesia nurses provide comfort and assurance. They explain to family members the anesthesia side effects and answer any potential questions. This close connection to patients and families means PACU nurses need to be understanding and compassionate.
Most responsibilities include:
- Ability to work in a fast-paced environment and make quick critical decisions
- Respond to complications administering medications and assisting in other procedures as needed
- Monitor post-operative patients’ levels of consciousness
- Measure and record patients’ vital signs
- Treat pain, nausea, and other post-operative symptoms of anesthesia
- Provide comfort and reassurance to distressed patients
- Educate patients and family members on post-surgery care
How Do You Become a Post-Anesthesia Nurse?
Like other nursing specializations, the journey to becoming a PACU nurse starts with getting certified as a registered nurse. Gaining experience in the post-anesthesia care unit is enough to start carving a career in this field. However, you can also further your education by becoming a certified post-anesthesia nurse (CPAN).
- Certified post-anesthesia nurse (CPAN)
- Certified ambulatory perianesthesia (CAPA) nurse
- Certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA)
What Skills Do You Need to Be a Post-Anesthesia Unit Nurse?
Most PACU nurses handle between one to two patients at a time, so it’s considered a less stressful nursing job. Still, it is paramount that good PACU nurses have strong nursing skills and make quick decisions about their care. Compassion, communication, and collaborative skills are crucial in this position. PACU nurses often are part of a larger team and must work in a group environment.
Most common skills or post-anesthesia unit nurses include:
- Experience in intensive care unit or post-anesthesia care unit
- Proficiency in electronic hospital management systems
- Exceptional interpersonal, communication, and collaboration skills
Starting Your Post-Anesthesia Nursing Career
Many consider a post-anesthesia nursing career the stepping stone to reach more highly specialized positions. Obtaining experience in the post-anesthesia care unit can prep nurses to assist in the operating room or even become anesthetic nurses in the future. If a nursing career in post-anesthesia care interests you, these steps will help you position yourself as a great candidate.
At Stability Healthcare, we place nurses in hospitals across the United States, helping them find tremendous opportunities in various fields, including in the post-anesthesia care unit. If you’re ready to kickstart your career, search for your next placement and set up an interview today.Read More
Being a travel nurse has a lot of perks – one being the opportunity to travel across the country and land yourself in an exciting city! Here’s a view of the best places to visit (and work in!) this spring.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA
Los Angeles is one of the United States’ biggest cities with some of the best weather. Less than an hour drive away from the oceanside, you can try your hand at surfing, swimming, or, for those less adventurous, relaxing on the beach! For those with a more artistic palette, there’s plenty of music venues, galleries, or art sight-seeing across the city. Our favorites:
Gold Diggers – As it says on their website, Gold Diggers is “a bar, boutique hotel and recording studios all within a single campus.” If you need a staycation during your time as a Los Angeles travel nurse, Gold Diggers is one of the most unique hotel experiences you can get. Occasionally, there’s secret live shows and events. Plus, they have a killer bar and some of the most stylish rooms in LA.
Celebrity Home Tours – Your feet might be tired after working long shifts – give them a break by booking a bus tour that visits celebrity homes across LA. Although this activity may seem a little gimmicky, it’s a good way to view the city and catch a break at the same time. One option is Starline tours, who claims to be the original celebrity home tour!
Milwaukee is a vibrant city nesting on the coast of Lake Michigan. Milwaukee tends to have more mild springs, which leads to plenty of artistic communities taking advantage and hosting galleries and art walks. Although Wisconsin is mostly known for their cheese, there’s a ton of great restaurants for carnivores, omnivores, vegetarians, and vegans alike. There’s also plenty of hiking options (like the beautiful Kettle Moraine) within driving distance for those looking for something more adventurous. Our favorites:
Milwaukee Art Museum – According to their website, the Milwaukee Art Museum has over 30,000 works of art. Famous artist Georgia O’Keeffe is a native to Wisconsin, and the Milwaukee Art Museum has one of the largest collections of her work.
Cactus Club – When live shows become a thing again, Cactus Club is one of the best places to catch a drink and set from a local (or nationally touring) band. While the wait is still on, Cactus Club is currently offering a special Airbnb stay that allows you to drink, eat, and sleep in the venue’s decked out green room.
Vanguard – Milwaukee’s Vanguard has the best of all worlds when it comes to eating. Vegan hotdog? You got it. OG hotdog? On the menu! With an emphasis for hot dogs and sausages with uniquely curated toppings, Vanguard has something that will have everyone’s mouths watering. We recommend the schnitzelwurst!
Find open positions in Milwaukee.
Chicago is a Midwest gem. You get the best of a large city, plus a beautiful lakeside with plenty of beaches to relax on. The spring is the best time to visit Chicago, not only because you can avoid the dreadful winters, but because there’s a ton of food festivals, music festivals, good weather, welcoming block parties, and pretty neighborhoods to walk around in. Our favorites:
Montrose Dog Beach – Get some vitamin D while being surrounded by dogs. Need we say more?
Pick Me Up Cafe – After walking around the quirky Uptown neighborhood on north side Chicago, grab a meal at the eccentric Pick Me Up Cafe. We recommended the buffalo wrap + a spiked milkshake.
Wicker Park – This neighborhood is the perfect place to shop. Brimming with a mix of well known brands like Adidas, small book shops like Myopic Books, and great coffee shops like Brü, Wicker Park has the kind of shopping that would appeal to anyone.
Find open positions in Chicago.
There’s a reason why people have been flocking to Colorado – it’s simply one of the best places to visit! It’s a great option for those who are more nature oriented, or who enjoy consistently scenic views. If you take on a travel nurse position here, bewarned, you might love it and not want to leave! The city boasts sports (like the Broncos & Nuggets), a ton of microbreweries, coffee shops, and plenty of activities like hiking, skiing, and tubing! Our favorites:
Illegal Pete’s – Although Illegal Pete’s is a favorite amongst the college crowd, it’s also the perfect place to grab a margarita with another fellow travel nurse after a long shift. They also have affordable mexican food that tastes great, plus you can watch the latest sports game as you enjoy their queso.
Landmark’s Mayan Theatre – A movie theater is one of the best places to get your entertainment fix. Snack on some popcorn and soak in the elegant architecture of the theater before turning your phone off and enjoying a film!
Blue Moon Brewery Tour – This is a good fit for, well, people who like to drink beer! See exactly where and how the magic happens that creates one of Colorado’s most recognizable beers brands.
Find open positions in Denver.
Nashville isn’t just for country music lovers. The city is a great fit for anyone who likes music, good food, and southern charm. Nashville’s food scene is most notably known for hot chicken, BBQ, and biscuits, but there’s also great roasteries, pastry shops, veggie options, and more! There’s amazing landmarks like the Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium, and the Country Music Hall of Fame. Our top three:
Local Honey – Self-care is an important aspect of being a travel nurse. After a few weeks of long arduous shifts, getting a fresh haircut is a great way to feel good. Local Honey is a salon that specializes in color and unique haircuts, so you can really develop your individual style.
Country Music Hall of Fame – As mentioned in the above paragraph, you can’t go wrong with a little country music. The Country Music Hall of Fame catalogues the history of country music through galleries, archived music, and more. Plus, you can learn more about all the artists who have earned the honor of being in the Country Music Hall of Fame!
Find open positions in Nashville.
Seattle has a bad rep for balmy weather, but it’s a fantastic place to visit. Nestled on the water, Seattle has an eclectic history with music (Nirvana, anyone?), the arts, and coffee. Plenty of movies have been filmed in Seattle, like the iconic 10 Things I Hate About You. To be frank, Seattle is a cool city, and one of our top cities to visit in the spring. Our favorites:
University of Washington Campus – As a travel nurse, you’re likely not a college student anymore. This doesn’t mean you can’t take a trip to University of Washington’s campus to catch in the beautiful views and campus architecture. In the spring, the campus is dotted with beautiful Japanese cherry blossom trees. Plus, the campus has a breathtaking view of Mount Rainier.
Spooked in Seattle Tours – Not for the faint of heart, the Spooked in Seattle tours offers a look into the city’s paranormal misadventures. It’s the longest running ghost tour in the area, and is run by people who are classified as actual paranormal investigators. You might want to make sure you don’t have a shift the next day, you might get spooked out of sleeping!
Find open positions in Seattle.
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Travel nurses are skilled professionals who take assignments in facilities with short-term staffing needs. They have the opportunity to provide patient care and get to see exciting places at the same time. But there’s more to becoming a travel nurse than meets the eye. Below are reasons why you should to become a travel nurse.
1. Great Pay
Our travel nurses earn good hourly rates on top of Day 1 insurance through United Healthcare including dental and vision, automatic life insurance policy, extra shift bonuses, guaranteed stipend, and 401K for travel nurses who have traveled with us for at least a year. Most importantly, we offered PTO for all of our travel nurses.
Getting a travel nursing job is not difficult although it’s best if you have about 24 months of acute care experience.
2. You Can Take Your Family With You
You don’t have to travel alone. If you have a spouse or children, you can always take them with you. Travel nurses can even bring along their pets to pet-friendly cities. We can also help you arrange for your housing and we reimburse travel expenses up to $600. You may also be eligible for a housing subsidy if you manage to secure your own housing. If you love your assignment, you also get the option to extend your contract.
3. Demand for Travel Nurses is High
The demand for travel nurses continues because of Covid-19. It hit its all-time high last year during the pandemic and the demand is still expected to rise. In fact, the forecast is bright for the nursing profession in the next four years. The travel nursing profession can give you more financial stability and flexibility as you can work anywhere. If you are committed to your profession, there is no shortage of job opportunities for you.
4. More Freedom and Flexibility
One of the benefits of being a travel nurse is having the freedom to choose wherever you want to work. You can pick your own location and if you are flexible with shift times, it’s easier to connect you with more travel nursing assignments. Travel nurses also get to take time off in between their assignments, to either go on a vacation or spend quality time with their family or friends. Most jobs do not offer this freedom and flexibility — you basically have full control of your life when you become a travel nurse.
5. Professional Growth
Working with a range of different healthcare facilities from outpatient care to Level 1 trauma center enables you to broaden your skill sets and enhance your current expertise. More experience coupled with a strong background and a commitment to your profession will help you succeed.
6. Live in New Places
If you want to see more of the United States and discover exciting places to live in, then travel nursing is for you. Nursing assignments are available in all 50 states from the busiest cities to quaint towns. If you want to explore a new state, we can always help you with how to apply for a new license.
7. Find Your Dream Place to Settle Down
By working as a travel nurse, you get the option to work anywhere you want to. You can take advantage of this opportunity to find an ideal place to settle down. By working in a different location, you get to test the waters and see what life is like in that place. You get to compare living in different towns or cities and decide where you want to permanently live.
Being a travel nurse provides you with a rare opportunity to live in any place that you want. And the more experiences you have working in different places, the more likely you are to get new travel nursing assignments. Most importantly, you can broaden your skills and can adapt to any working environment.
8. You Get to Relax
Most of our travel nurses stay on for a minimum of three assignments and then they take time off to relax or travel with their family. Compared to working as a permanent nurse, being a travel nurse lets you avoid burnout. You always have the option to take a break after your assignment. As soon as you have recharged, we can connect you again with more travel nursing assignments.
9. No Workplace Drama
One advantage of being a travel nurse is you don’t get caught up with any workplace politics or drama. You only need to show up every single day and focus on providing the best patient care. By being a travel nurse, you get to avoid having to deal with long-term management or co-worker issues. Your only commitment is to get the job done properly and improve your skills.
10. Experience More Adventures
Traveling lets you experience life differently. You can explore new places, try new cuisines, learn new cultures, discover new interests or hobbies and meet new people. You get to do all these by becoming a travel nurse. This profession can give you the opportunity to try new adventures, something that you may never find in your own city. So long as you are open to new experiences, the options are endless.
Begin Your Journey as a Travel Nurse
We are a travel nursing agency that can assist you with travel nurse jobs. We can help you find your next assignment and it’s easy to get started — simply search for open jobs and compare high-paying travel jobs, set an interview and book an assignment. Our team will assist you every step of the way including helping you arrange for your housing. Apply today!Read More
Being a travel nurse is an incredible journey that makes it possible to have a different, profitable career full of enriching experiences. But it’s normal to be in doubt and think: is this kind of work for me? Will I be able to adapt? Well, if you’re looking for some courage or inspiration to help you along your path, we’ve selected some books that will offer you the necessary immersion in the travel nursing universe. The inspiring journeys herein will help you resolve your doubts and invigorate you to push forward with this amazingly rewarding career.
1. Travel Nurse’s Bible (A Guide to Everything on Travel Nursing), David Morrison
Likely the best-known book among travel nurses, it’s one you should definitely have in your mobile library. The book is an excellent super didactic guide for those who are just starting their careers or are looking to grow in the field. David Morrison’s book offers a detailed explanation of each step to pursue a career, listing all the qualifications you need and what characteristics are essential to carry out this type of work. If you feel at all lost or uncertain about where to start, this is the book to read!
2. Hitting the Road: A Guide to Travel Nursing by Shalon Kearney
Another excellent guidebook for pursuing a career in travel nursing, this book, penned by the retired travel nurse, Shalon Kearney, gives you a wealth of practical knowledge based on her decades-long career. The book goes into details on finances, tax strategies, and even international travel. And if you’re not sure this career is for you, the book offers some wonderful self-assessment tests designed to help you determine whether you’re on the right path.
3. Words of Hope from Nurses to Nurses by Sue Heacock, RN, MBA
Written for anyone that wants to be inspired by the amazing jobs that nurses do, this book takes the reader on an epic journey of ups and downs from nurses all around the world. This book is an excellent source of collected wisdom and inspirational stories bound to keep you inspired for a long time to come.
4. Roadfood by Jane & Michael Stern
Every travel nurse knows the struggle of finding a decent meal on the road. Jane and Michael Stern penned this wonderful little book as a guidebook for those on the road who want to experience something more than the usual fast food and restaurant chains. After all, a big part of traveling is about trying all kinds of new food. The book contains plenty of recommendations on where and how you can eat like a local across the United States—invaluable literature for a hungry travel nurse!
5. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
While not specific to the nursing world, Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert is an instant classic for anyone passionate about traveling. Elizabeth tells the story of deciding to leave her comfort zone as she uncovers the three parts of nature important to her. The book will inspire you to find your own inner peace while exploring this wonderful world we live in.
Being a travel nurse is an amazing profession that allows you to make a positive impact on the world while exploring it and becoming the best version of yourself. If you’re feeling inspired and looking for that next big assignment, see open positions today at Stability.Read More
You’ve almost survived (and maybe even thrived) in the challenges of nursing school. After graduation, there’s just one obstacle standing between you and the career of your dreams: the NCLEX.
Before you set out on your travel nursing adventure, it’s time to buckle down for some serious studying. If you’re already studying effectively for the NCLEX, you might be wondering which are the most important NCLEX study topics.
If you want to ace the NCLEX, keep reading — we’ll explain which are the most important study areas for you to focus on.
Assessment and Diagnosis
Assessment and diagnosis are the foundation of your nursing practice. Your nursing classes taught you the signs and symptoms that accompany diseases.
Now, can you identify those symptoms in a busy nursing environment? That’s what the NCLEX wants to find out.
Some NCLEX questions will give you a list of symptoms for you to diagnose. Other questions will give you a few symptoms, and then ask what other assessments you should do. This tests your ability to figure out what assessments you need to do to get the full picture of your patient’s health.
When studying for NCLEX assessment questions, ask yourself:
- What signs and symptoms of this disease would I be most likely to see in real life?
- If I only noticed a few signs of this disease, what assessments should I do to find out more?
- What other diseases have these signs, and would it be easy to make the wrong diagnosis?
- What psychosocial factors are at play in the patient’s life that contribute to their situation?
If you practice thinking critically about your assessments, you’ll be well prepared to take on these NCLEX questions.
Triage and Prioritization
In your real-life nursing practice, you’ll have several problems on your hands at once. That’s why triaging is a crucial skill for nursing.
The NCLEX tests your prioritization skills by giving you a complicated situation involving several different patients. You’ll need to draw on your diagnostic knowledge to figure out what’s wrong with each patient. Then, you’ll have to decide who needs your help first.
What’s the first thing you do for a patient with severe burns? What’s the one thing you shouldn’t do for someone with hypothermia?
Nursing students tend to have a wide knowledge base of medical-surgical topics, but less preparation for first response nursing. Give yourself lots of time to brush up on emergency nursing to get ready for these NCLEX questions.
You’ll see pharmacology questions sprinkled throughout every area of the NCLEX. That means you’ll have to know more than just the name and purpose of each drug. You will need to know how each drug could impact your patient in any situation.
For each drug you review, ask yourself:
- If a patient told me they were taking this medication, what health conditions would I expect them to have?
- Does this medication have any side effects that I would mistake for diseases?
- What nursing interventions would I have to do if a patient had a severe reaction to this drug?
You’ll use pharmacology wherever your nursing degree takes you. That’s why the NCLEX focuses heavily on it — and your studying should too.
Faced with an aging population, we will soon have more older adults than children. Nurses need to be ready to care for older adults with all the unique physiological needs they have.
Older adults have different health risks, including:
- Different nutritional needs
- Polypharmacology-associated risks (taking many medications at once)
- Higher risk of compromised skin integrity
- Higher risk of confusion during a hospital stay
- Risk of falls
The older adult also might have different baseline assessments, like lower blood pressure and different blood test results.
If you understand how to assess and care for an older adult, you will be ready to pass this section.
Scope of Practice and Delegating Care
As a Registered Nurse, you’ll be a leader on your health care team. One of your primary responsibilities will be to delegate tasks to other team members.
These questions are challenging for nursing students who haven’t gained experience in delegating care to other team members. However, delegation is a key skill to ensuring the safety of your patients. The NCLEX includes a high proportion of questions about delegation.
If delegation questions are new to you, keep a few things in mind when you study for them:
- Never delegate a task to a team member that is outside that team member’s scope of practice
- Only a registered nurse can perform assessments or make judgments
- When the Registered Nurse delegates a task, the RN remains responsible for the patient overall
Don’t forget that the Registered Nurse’s scope of practice does overlap with other health care professionals. In an NCLEX delegation question, you may see several options that fall within the RN’s scope of practice.
Your job is to look at the whole situation and decide which actions you can delegate and which one only you can do.
General Care Management
This is the largest section of the NCLEX, making up 20% of NCLEX questions. Care management questions cover all the day-to-day challenges of nursing.
These questions don’t deal with clinical situations, so they’re easy to overlook when studying. However, since they play a big role in your nursing practice, the NCLEX gives them lots of space.
Management of care includes topics like:
- Patient confidentiality
- Advocating for your patients
- Informed consent for procedures
- Continuity of care
- Nursing ethics
- Safe environment and injury prevention
To pass this section, you will need a thorough knowledge of your patient’s rights and how a nurse protects them.
Travel Nursing and More
No matter which area of nursing you choose to pursue, passing the NCLEX is the gateway to an incredible career.
When you pass the NCLEX, the whole world of nursing is open to you. If you’re intrigued by the idea of a travel nursing career, check out Stability Healthcare. We’re the travel nursing agency that makes it easy to find exciting travel nurse jobs to launch your career.Read More