Nursing

Why Pediatric Nursing?

pediatric nurse

Well, I’ve been a pediatric nurse for almost 10 years now and it’s truly a rewarding job! Here are a few reasons that I love doing what I do and I hope you’ll appreciate pediatric nursing and even consider it as a nursing career.

1. It’s’ the little things! I’ve had my best times being a pediatric nurse doing the little things that make a difference in my patient’s day. Whether it’s wiping the brow of a febrile child, getting a popsicle for a thirsty child, high-fiving a child for taking their medicines, or playing a game with a child that is bored, it’s the little things that make a shift better for the patient and for you. These things don’t always take the most time to do, but they do make the most difference. Your patients and families will appreciate you more for it.

2. It’s a family affair! When you’re caring for a sick child, you’re also caring for the parents and sometimes extended family. You’re helping the family deal with the stress of having a sick child in the hospital, which can be extremely stressful. I’ll never forget having a mother tell me that my calm demeanor helped her relax during her child’s hospital stay. It made me feel like I had done a good job of helping her cope with her child’ s illness. A calm family helps keep a child calm as well.  As a pediatric nurse, you play a huge role in helping families de-stress and deal with illness. It’s very rewarding!

3. Why not specialize? Pediatrics is one of the top nursing specialties in the field. Whether you work in the emergency department, cardiac services, intensive care or general pediatrics, you will be sure to find a good fit for your particular interests. No matter where you choose to navigate in the field of pediatrics, your job will be sure to present gratifying and challenging experiences to you.

4. You’re the biggest cheerleader! Illness and hospitalization is tough on children. They can’t always play or be with their friends or live life as they normally do while being in the hospital. Add to that having to take medications, endure procedures and sleep away from home. Hospitalization can make children very anxious. That’s where pediatric nurses come in. We cheer the kids on as they take medicines, go through procedures and tests and eventually get discharged home! It’s very satisfying to watch a child return to their normal lives after staying in the hospital and knowing that you encouraged them and held their hands through it all.

5. Children give you courage because they are very resilient. As a pediatric nurse, you get to witness their bravery up close. It seems as though they can cope with many things. Seeing their bravery makes you want to be brave with them and encourage them through their illness.

Those are just a few reasons that pediatric nursing is a great career path. I hope that you’ll consider it as a career choice and I hope to have shown you why it is so rewarding!

Travel Nursing 101: First Things First

GoldenGateBridge

Okay, so you’ve decided to become a travel nurse, or at least you’re expressing interest. That’s great! It is a wonderful, rewarding opportunity.  I’m currently into my 3rd travel nurse assignment (like the shot of the bridge?) and I often get asked many questions on what travel nursing is like. I’ve been fortunate enough to meet  and befriend fellow travelers along the way. Through our conversations and my own experiences, I’ve learned quite a bit of helpful information.  So, I’m taking the next few blog posts to give some tips on how to make the most of  a travel nursing career.! Here it goes……

Travel Nursing 101: First things first.

The first thing I will tell anyone considering an assignment as a travel nurse is this: have a clear purpose for starting a career as a travel nurse.  Are you most interested in earning extra money? Are you traveling for the experience alone? Are you willing to work various shifts/units? Holidays?   Trust me, having the answer to these questions in the back of your mind will help you determine which assignments are best for you. Some assignments have great pay rates, benefits, etc, but aren’t necessarily in the most fun places and vice versa. Some assignments may require you to float to various units, work holidays and rotate between day/night shifts. Before you choose an assignment, decide which details you are willing to negotiate on.

Now that you’ve decided to travel, you need to choose an agency to travel with. Choose the right travel company. I repeat, choose the right company!! As travel nursing has expanded, agencies are expanding and becoming more competitive.  Truthfully, in terms of communication, contracts, housing, benefits, customer service, etc., some agencies are better than others. Pay close attention to an agency’s reviews before signing on with them!  There are several websites that can give you agency rankings. I like both www.highwayhypodermics.com and www.travelnursingcentral.com.

Use all the tools you can to get reviews. Do your homework! If you know a traveler, talk with him/her about their experiences. Do they like their company? What companies would they stay away from and why? Do they have a good relationship with their recruiter? Having a good recruiter can make all the difference in your travel experience. There are a lot of varied opinions about different agencies. You may have a great experience with a company while another traveler didn’t. Sometimes, experience is the best teacher. As a rule of thumb, though, if you notice several negative comments about an agency via word of mouth or web, pay attention.

Coming up in my next blog post,  I’ll tell you specifics about contracts. What needs to be detailed in your contract? What questions do you need to ask your recruiter? What questions do you need to ask when you interview for the assignment?  A good rule to remember: If it is not in your contract, it does not exist!

Stay tuned and all questions are welcomed:)

About Amanda

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