Sometimes what draws people to a place is how friendly everyone is, how easy it is to get around, and the low crime and safe feeling of the place. Those are a few of the reasons travel nurses love the Sunflower State, but that’s not all! Here are three big reasons to consider travel nursing in Kansas.
1. Healthcare workers are in high demand in Kansas
Overall, U.S. News ranks Kansas #41 in the nation for healthcare. The ranking takes into consideration numerous factors, including access to preventive medical and dental treatment for children and adults and overall quality of care. With a growing nurse shortage, nurses are needed more than ever to help meet the demand in Kansas.
Opportunities for travel nurses and other healthcare workers abound in Kansas — including at some of the top facilities in the nation. For example, the University of Kansas Hospital, a teaching hospital in Kansas City, is nationally ranked among the top 50 in seven adult specialties (cancer, cardiology, ENT, geriatrics, neurology, pulmonology, urology) and rated high performing in three adult specialties and 15 procedures and conditions.
Operating room travel nurse Cristina Richard has worked several assignments at KU for a total of eighteen months and says, “KU is a great hospital. I love just how well everything flows. It’s organized, there is teamwork, and everybody is willing to pitch in if needed. Within the surgery department, the overall atmosphere is welcoming!”
Travel sterile processing tech Karen Easley agrees that KU is an outstanding hospital. “You can learn a lot working at KU,” she says.
Kansas is also a member of the 37-state Nurse Licensure Compact, which makes it faster and easier for any registered nurse with a license in an NLC primary state of residence to get licensed to practice in Kansas.
2. Kansas is a great place to live
Living in Kansas will allow you to save some money on assignment. Kansas’s cost of living is 16.9% lower than the U.S. average, according to Bestplaces.net.
Kansas also offers a slower pace of life than many parts of the U.S. One example of this is the ease of getting around. In Kansas, the average commute is 19 minutes, versus more than 26 minutes for the U.S. average.
The slower pace of life is why Cristina and her family ultimately decide to relocate to Kansas from Louisiana. “We wanted to raise our children in a good area with a small hometown feel. Plus, the weather is accommodating for various activities year-round,” Cristina explains.
As far as climate, Kansas offers a comfort rating of more than 7 out of 10, with more sunnier days than average (230 in Kansas), less snow, and less rain than the U.S. average.
Higher education in Kansas earned the state #13 in the nation overall, and the Pre-K through 12 took #27 in the U.S.
Then there are the people. The Midwest is known for its polite, friendly people. But Cristina says, “I think what surprised me was that the people were friendlier than I expected them to be — very helpful and polite. Compared to the Southern hospitality I grew up with, I have received the same kindness and politeness here in the Midwest, and I wasn’t expecting it.”
3. There’s lots to do in Kansas
Many travel nurse assignments are in Kansas City, a metro area with museums, an aquarium, zoos, water parks, good food, arts, entertainment, professional sports teams, and more.
“There are many options for after work outings. I like trying different restaurants, visiting museums, and shopping in local markets and boutique shops,” Cristina says.
While on assignments in the city, Karen Easley says she became friends with other travel techs, and they would all meet up in the Power and Light District in Kansas City for music and dancing.
One of the top-rated places to see in Kansas is Massachusetts Street in Lawrence, Kansas. The National Registry of Historic Places lists many of these buildings built during the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century. Check out Free State Brewing Company, Weaver’s Department Store, and the Granada Theater.
For nurses who take rural assignments, Kansas boasts numerous state parks and lakes. For instance, in El Dorado, there’s a state park with the largest lake in Kansas. People love to camp and fish there.
Cristina also enjoys leisurely drives, such as around the Flint Hills. “It’s particularly beautiful when the sun is setting, to see rolling hills as far as the eye can see.”
An excellent place to work and visit
Kansas is a great place to take a travel nursing job, whether for a short amount of time or for repeat assignments.