Important Travel Nurse Terminology That You Should Know
When you’re traveling from city to city, taking care of all types of patients, and working alongside different units, you’re bound to learn so much as a travel nurse. Along the way, you’ll also learn the language all travel nurses speak. Below are important terms all travel nurses should know.
Regardless of where your next assignment takes you, everyone will know these foundational terms:
– When healthcare facilities need short-term staffing needs, they hire a nurse who will take on the assignment. While the average assignment lasts 13 weeks, travel nurses can work anywhere between four to 26 weeks.
– Think of your tax home as your home base. Once you finish your assignment, your tax home is where you’ll return to. Your tax home is also connected to legal documents, including your driver’s license, mail delivery, and voter registration.
– It’s common for facilities to put out Electronic Medical Record (EMR) conversion projects when they need extra support updating their medical records. Travel nurses with EMR experience are often contracted to help make those conversions.
The more contract vocabulary you know, the better. Get to know the following so you understand what you’re getting into at the start of each assignment:
These are the hours you know you’ll be working and getting paid for.
At minimum, you need to work these hours each week. Required hours can range anywhere from 24 hours to 48 hours every week. Sometimes, required hours can even go beyond 48 hours.
Approved Time Off
When you request days off in your contract for vacation, appointments, or anything else, those days and hours count as approved time off. If you know you cannot work certain days or hours in a week, give a heads up to your recruiter to make sure those days are included in your contract.
Per Diem Nursing
Meaning “per day” in Latin, this is a subset of travel nursing where contracts offer temporary work for one day or several days.
Payment is much different as a travel nurse than it is in a more permanent position. Learn these terms so you can make the most out of your financial situation:
An essential part of travel nurse pay, stipends are reimbursements for housing expenses, if you qualify.
Different from Per Diem Nursing, per diem payments, also known as Meals & Incidental Expenses, or M&IE, cover the cost of food and other essentials you need when you’re away from your tax home. Though it’s likely you’ll get quoted per diem as a monthly or weekly rate, the amounts will always be based on daily costs.
Your contract may specify what an agency needs to reimburse you with when traveling to and from your destination, if you qualify.
Base Hourly Rate
Think of this as your hourly wage. Your base pay is what you earn for each hour you work.
You’ll get an hourly rate when you’re called in to work.
Missed Hours Penalty
Every agency and facility has a different policy on any potential missed hours. Check in with yours to learn them.
Got questions? Ask your recruiter
If you’re unsure about any other travel nursing terms, whether they come up in your contract or in conversation, the recruiters at HealthCare Support can walk you through them all. HealthCare Support is a national staffing agency that helps passionate healthcare professionals find roles they love. Our team is dedicated to supporting and teaching you everything you need to know so you can best set yourself up for a life of success.
To learn more about our open jobs and services, please give us a call at 888-219-6285.