Since 1969, we have designated June as Pride Month to commemorate the Stonewall Riots and pursue equality for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA+) community. However, the LGBTQIA+ community faces ongoing discrimination and stigma in our society, even in healthcare. The American Nurses Association (ANA) “condemns discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and/or expression in health care and recognizes that it continues to be an issue despite the increasing recognition and acceptance of LGBTQIA+ populations.” It’s an important month to remind healthcare providers of the health disparities in the LGBTQIA+ community and educate ourselves on ways to be better advocates.
Health Care Challenges
Everyone who needs medical care should receive it without being mistreated, discriminated against, or denied access. Yet, researchers have found inequality in health care, which endangers and affects the mental health of the LGBTQIA+ community. This impact can discourage people from seeking health care. The ANA is continuously spreading systemic awareness and creating a safe and inclusive health care environment for everyone. As a healthcare professional, there are ways to advocate for this marginalized community on an individual level.
Educate + Advocacy
It is crucial to stay up-to-date on basic LGBTQIA+ terms, language, and definitions as a health care professional. Staying knowledgeable creates a closer bond with your patient, identifies potential mental and physical health risks, and creates a generally more inclusive and safe environment.
Take advantage of the many resources and hotlines to further your knowledge:
- Trevor Project: leading organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25
- American Medical Association: Creating an LGBTQ-Friendly Practice
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: LGBT Health Services
- Nurses Health Education About LGBT Elders
- The World Professional Association for Transgender Health: Standards of Care
- National LGBT Health Education Center
Create an inclusive space
We all want to feel comfortable, and it is difficult when the space is unknown or uninviting. And years and years of discrimination doesn’t help either. Create a safe place in the hospital, whether that be in the waiting room or medical facility such as:
- Unisex restrooms
- LGBTQIA+ flags or other symbols that represent inclusiveness
- Anti-harassment and anti-discrimination policies
- Preferred contacts and support systems (LGBTQ+ community more likely to create a chosen family)
- Establish pronouns prior. Always include your pronouns as well.
Putting in the time to educate oneself and creating an inclusive space isn’t enough. Ultimately, a nurse must respect every one of their patient’s gender identity and sexual orientation. This means settings aside one’s personal and religious beliefs in the process. The best strategy is to be unassuming and gender fluid in our language, ask open-ended questions and maintain a non-judgmental behavior. Therefore, creating an enjoyable and safe experience for LGBTQIA+ patients, so they can continue seeking medical attention. Share your pronouns on your name tag or in your introduction to open up a safe and welcoming space.
All in all, this is an important topic that takes time, patience, and continuous knowledge to stay informed. As nurses, it’s your professional responsibility to ensure all patients are provided with medical care. As the Code of Ethics For Nurses states, “the nurse practices with compassion and respect for every person’s inherent dignity, worth, and unique attributes.
Any advice we’re missing? Let us know!Read More
Anna is a Telemetry/Medical-Surgical who became a travel nurse when the pandemic started. She’s spent time in California and Arizona. Learn more about Anna below:
What has it been like working during the pandemic?
I was not a travel nurse when the pandemic started but the unit that I was working on became a Covid 19 unit. It was very tough and very frustrating because I see patients getting worst each day instead of getting better. But because my heart is to serve as a nurse I need to have a strong spirit to take care of patients who are sick.
What placements have you had in the past?
I started as a travel nurse last year 2020, in the midst of a pandemic. My first placement was in Arizona in a Medical-Surgical unit in a Neuroscience Hospital for 8 weeks. I also have placement in California, Bay area which I still currently holding placement.
All-time favorite placement?
What is your career history, how did you become a travel nurse?
I started my career as a healthcare worker in Louisiana as a CNA for 7 years. While working nights I went back to school and finished LPN in a community college. After a year as an LPN on a Medical-Surgical floor, I went back to school and transition to BSN. At this time, I have 6 years of experience as an RN. I’m very adventurous and like challenges. I also had experience in home health services, infusion clinic, trauma unit, but mostly medical-surgical. So I decided to try travel nursing which took me a year to have the courage to pursue it. I talked to a lot of agents until I found Chad (my recruiter) and gave confidence that I can be a travel nurse.
What inspired you to become a travel nurse?
What inspired me to become a travel nurse is the challenges of being a flexible nurse and it also inspired me to go see different places in the US.
What is your nursing specialty?
My specialty in nursing is Telemetry/Medical-Surgical.
Favorite hobbies outside of work?
I liked the outdoors. My favorite things to do are walking, hiking, and spending time at the beach.
Best travel nursing story?
One of my best travel nursing experiences is during my placement in Arizona. The hospital is huge and had more than 600 beds in several buildings. I got the chance to be assigned to different floors each day that I work, meet new faces, and learned a lot of nursing stuff.
What’s your favorite part of working with Stability?
My favorite part of working with Stability is the consistency. My recruiter followed me in each and every step from assignment to assignment. I felt comfortable talking to them and very professional.
What is something you bring with you (non-nursing related) to every move/placement?
Since I loved driving, I just brought my blue mini cooper with me. I was amazed that it fits all the things I need.
Any advice for future travelers?
It took a lot of courage for me to be a travel nurse but since I found the right recruiter, I became confident & liked traveling. My advice to future travelers is to find the agency and recruiter the fits your needs will guide you and have open communication.
As a travel nurse, you have the luxury to choose your next placement location, and what better time than in the summer. There are many options to choose from, like a warm beach town or a city surrounded by mountains. Also, our list comes with sites to visit, restaurants, and things to do while working in the city. Here are our top five locations to choose from this summer:
New York, New York
New York City is a prime adventure spot for travel nurses this summer. Not only does this destination offer the highest paying travel nursing jobs, but the city is officially opening back up in July! That is why the summer season is the perfect time to work in this fast-paced metropolis with easy access to subway lines and bus stops.
While in New York, plan on visiting landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty, Grand Central Station, the Empire State Building, and Central Park. During the warm summer days, take advantage of the beaches just a subway or ferry ride away.
Professionally, New York City hospitals were ranked as the best in the country in 2020-21, including New York-Presbyterian’s Columbia and Cornell hospitals ranked fourth in the nation. The attractions, nightlife, and well-ranked hospitals make this destination a must for travel nurses this summer.
La Jolla, California
Although not a city of its own, La Jolla is a beautiful seaside community in San Diego County. This thriving down-to-earth village is second on our list for many reasons. Despite the fact La Jolla is small, there is a ton to do. This beach town is famous for its outdoor activities, including surfing, tide pools, hiking the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, and visiting the sea lion caves.
Average temperatures in La Jolla range from 50-77 degrees – great for those nurses who want to avoid the heat. In addition, the gloomy clouds dispel during the summer months, making it the perfect season to visit! In addition, Scripps La Jolla Hospitals ranked as a top hospital in San Diego County for the third year in a row.
Wilmington, North Carolina
The port city of Wilmington is third on our list for travel nurses this summer. Victorian architecture, historic homes, and brick streets transport you back in time. Voted “America’s Best Riverfront,” Wilmington’s riverwalk features top-rated restaurants, boutiques, and dynamic nightlife. For historical enthusiasts, take a tour of the World War II Battleship NORTH CAROLINA or the many historical homes preserved from the Civil War.
Wilmington’s travel nursing opportunities include New Hanover Regional Medical Center, which was rated high performing in seven adult procedures and conditions.
Calling all coffee lovers, foodies, and adventurers. Seattle is a superb place for travel nurses in the summer. Planted right in the Pacific Northwest, this place has many things to do, and not to mention top medical hospitals such as the Swedish Memorial, Virginia Mason, and the University of Washington.
Explore the famous Space Needle, Museum of Pop Culture, the first-ever Starbucks, and Pike’s Place Market. On your days off, visit the Pudget Sound, hike Mount Rainier, or scour the countless waterfalls only an hour outside of the city. Seattle has it all!
Last on our list to travel to this summer is the gateway to Alaska. With long-lasting daylight, wildlife viewings, and temperatures ranging from 60°F – 80°F, summer is the perfect time to visit Anchorage.
Take a day trip to Denali National Park and visit the highest peak in North America, Mt. McKinley. Not only does Alaska have fishing, hiking, glacier-exploring, and amazing wildlife, but it is home to one of the best medical centers, Alaska Native Medical Center.
Summertime is a great season to explore different cities. To find out what travel nursing opportunities are available in these five cities or other destinations, check out Stability for open roles and check off your bucket list today!Read More
Warmer temperatures are on the horizon, which means summertime is in full swing! The last thing nurses want to do is spend hours in the kitchen over a hot stove. So, we have you covered with seven meal-prep options that require little to no effort.
Summer Cobb Salad
Take advantage of seasonal veggies by incorporating them into your meal! A Summer Cobb Salad is a simple dish that takes less than ten minutes. Add in the spring mix of your choice with avocados, berries, corn, and your favorite meat. Sprinkle goat cheese, and top with a balsamic vinaigrette, and you are ready to go!
Ahi Poke Bowl
A classic Hawaiian dish that tastes like summer. If you enjoy sushi but don’t have the time to make it, this is the next best option. A refreshing, healthy bowl of raw tuna mixed with green onions, sesame, and soy sauce, makes for a great lunch! Here is the recipe for Ahi Poke Bowl. We recommend greens like avocados and cucumbers on the side.
Caprese Pasta Salad
Tomatoes, mozzarella, and noodles, what more could you want? Caprese pasta salad takes less than twenty minutes and yields a week of servings. Just add olive oil, salt, garlic, pepper to enhance your dish. This meal is great because you can serve it warm or cold. Enjoy!
Summer Veggie Quesadillas
Summer Veggie Quesadillas require a stove, but it’s a perfect and easy meal for those summer months. Grill up some zucchinis, summer squash, bell peppers, and onions, sprinkle in the cheese of your choice, and add pesto on top! If you make too much, you can freeze them up to four months!
Watermelon Basil Feta Salad
Watermelon is a huge staple this summer and a must in your next meal. Watermelon Basil Feta Salad is a great option during those hot summer months. Add cucumbers, red onion, feta, basil, and watermelon to make this crisp, simple dish. On the plus side, it’s healthy, so it won’t have you feeling sluggish during those long shifts.
Cold Chicken-Cheese Kebobs
You heard it right, chicken you don’t have to grill! Chicken-cheese kebobs only requires eight ingredients. Just marinate the chicken overnight to maximize flavor and wallah you have an effortless meal for your next shift.
Chickpea Salad Sandwich
Chickpeas are the perfect basic for a hot summer day. It takes twenty whole minutes to make a chickpea salad sandwich, and they are great for the entire week. Spice up this dish with your favorite protein, and you are ready to eat.
Meal-prep is a game-changer – especially for busy nurses! And there are countless benefits to meal-prepping, such as eating healthier, saving on costs, and spending less time in the kitchen. These are just seven recipe options; however, these ingredients are versatile – instead of a chickpea salad sandwich, you can make a chickpea rice bowl! This summer be creative without spending too much time in the kitchen.
Ready to plan your next travel nursing placement? See open roles and get started today at Stability.Read More