Registered nurse Nancy Skees had worked in emergency/trauma nursing for more than 20 years in hospitals near her Kentucky home and was ready for a change. She began traveling with RNnetwork in June 2011 and has enjoyed each assignment.
“I enjoy experiencing the differences in each region of this great country by visiting the historical sites, which has given me a greater understanding of where we have been and how far we have come,” Nancy shares. “I am a history buff and have taken great advantage of each assignment by exploring all attractions nearby during my off days.”
Nancy says her most memorable experience with travel nursing came from working in the emergency room at George Washington University Hospital in Washington, D.C.
“There are three phones in the ER with direct lines to maritime emergencies, the Capitol and the White House. Two never rang while I was there, but the staff did handle several problems at sea,” Nancy recalls. “I was also working in the area when the naval yard shooting occurred, and I engaged in several conversations with people who were affected by the government shutdown. When you live and work in these areas during times like this, you are more than an impartial observer of the news.”
Though Nancy says she doesn’t have a dream assignment, she’d like to return to South Carolina or work in New England at some point — anywhere that offers her a new adventure.
“I often have friends and family who come stay with me while on assignment. We enjoy the area, whether it is the beach, wine country or historical centers,” Nancy expresses. “It is almost like being on permanent vacation.”
To others who are considering travel nursing assignments, Nancy recommends being friendly and adaptable.
“Go places you are interested in, and keep an open mind. If an assignment doesn’t feel right, don’t do it — and contact your recruiter immediately if there is a problem,” she says. “I get to know as many people as I come in contact with, whether they work in the lab or radiology. This makes me have a comfort zone when the permanent employees see me as an individual. I also try to care for my patients as if they were family and make patient care a better process.”