I get a lot of questions asking about travel opportunities for nurse practitioners. Most of us have heard of travel nursing, adventure seeking nurses heading out across the country for weeks long assignments, but similar opportunities for NPs aren’t so widely advertised. Fortunately for nurse practitioners, travel is possible in locum tenens work.
Locum tenens nurse practitioners fill temporary needs in clinics and hospitals throughout the country. These opportunities can be quite lucrative and often include incentives like housing as part of the package. Locum tenens assignments may last as little as a few weeks or as long as a few months. Some companies seeking NPs to fill temporary needs may even end up hiring the assigned nurse practitioner for a full-time position.
Are you eligible to work as a locum tenens nurse practitioner? Most companies requesting NPs to fill temporary needs require experience. Because these assignments are short, they don’t allow for a significant amount of on-the-job training. At least some level of experience in the field you will be working is a must for locums work.
If you hope to make locums tenens assignments the basis of your income, your lifestyle must allow for a flexible schedule. You may find yourself inundated with opportunities at times, finding yourself traveling from location to location for new assignments. At other times, you may encounter a dry spell waiting weeks or a few months between job opportunities. You must plan your finances and schedule accordingly.
While travel to various assignments appeals to some NPs, others of us are homebodies. Fortunately, working locum tenens can be done locally. Nurse practitioners can accept only local locums assignments. This approach works best for those living in or near large cities or healthcare hubs as more assignments will likely come their way.
Locum tenens assignments are an excellent opportunity for nurse practitioners seeking variety in their careers. NPs with room for flexibility as far as their scheduling and finances can take advantage of these unique opportunities either locally or by traveling to other parts of the country.
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