History of healthcare travelers

Over the last century, what started as an assignment of healthcare workers to facilities in need has become a career of choice for many healthcare professionals. During the American Frontier, thousands of Americans received healthcare from healthcare workers traveling across the country. Healthcare workers are in greater demand than ever before.

Many healthcare workers have chosen to join a medical staffing agency and travel and work at different facilities and hospitals on a 13 or 26-week contract. There are several reasons to be drawn to this profession, including higher pay and travel opportunities. Below is a synopsis of the history of healthcare travelers.

1850: American Frontier

Nurses and other healthcare professionals traveled throughout the Wild West to assist wounded and injured frontier families before healthcare travelers were even established. To ensure the health and wellness of these families and other patients, they would visit hundreds of different towns.

1860: American Civil War

During the American Civil War, healthcare professionals were assigned to different forts to help soldiers and their families recover from injuries sustained during the war. Clara Barton was known to visit several locations and treat soldiers on both sides. This gave people the idea that nurses and other healthcare workers could travel and work in different places.

Early 1900s: WWI

Technological advancements during WW1, such as mobile X-rays, required healthcare workers to travel to use the device. Towards the end of the war, the first veterans hospital was founded, and healthcare professionals were recruited from all over the country to help. The Veterans Administration (VA) was then established, and still to this day the VA uses healthcare travelers from different areas to give healthcare to American soldiers.

Late 1900s: Programs for healthcare travelers

The University of Utah saw the need to educate healthcare travelers. They created a program for them to build their skills and experience. This program allowed temporary workers to step in while those healthcare professionals continued their education. In 1979, the first medical staffing agency was founded, and the demand for healthcare workers across the country only increased.

Early 2000s: Affordable Care Act

In 2010, The Affordable Care Act was passed. This extended healthcare coverage for millions of Americans. The more people with health insurance, the more we see a need for traveling healthcare professionals. Fortunately, healthcare traveling grew and in 2020 we saw more than 14,000 new healthcare travelers.

Join our medical staffing agency

Healthcare traveling has evolved throughout the years, and the industry is still evolving because of technological advances and the number of nurses and other healthcare professionals interested in a traveling career. By the time 2025 rolls around, healthcare is expected to make up 20% of the U.S. workforce. If you’re interested in joining the growing profession of healthcare travelers, reach out to us today to see how you can get started!

Why a great relationship with your recruiter matters

As a traveling healthcare professional, it’s critical to have a great relationship with your recruiter. Traditional recruiters find candidates for a permanent position, whereas recruiters for the best healthcare travel companies work together with their healthcare professionals on an ongoing basis. Contracts are typically 13 weeks, and what helps your recruiter find the right assignment each time is getting to know you.

RTG Medical knows how important relationships between our traveling healthcare professionals and recruiters are. A good relationship allows you to get the most out of your career and overall leads to your success. There are several characteristics that create a strong relationship with your recruiter. Let’s walk through them and discover the benefits of a solid relationship.

Key characteristics of a good traveler-recruiter relationship

The key to any strong relationship is communication. This is the same for traveler-recruiter relationships. Having open communication while you’re trying to get the position will ensure your recruiter knows you’re engaged throughout the process. After you accept the contract, let your recruiter know how it’s going and provide them with any updates. Continual communication helps build a successful partnership. It’s also important to establish preferred communication methods with your recruiter.

Transparency, trust, and honesty are a few other characteristics necessary to have a good traveler-recruiter relationship. Transparency and trust go hand in hand. If anything good or bad happens while on assignment, let your recruiter know. The more your recruiter knows, the better they can assist you from contract to contract.

How to build a strong relationship with your recruiter

When you become a traveling healthcare professional with one of the best healthcare travel companies, you’ll need to ask questions and set expectations with your recruiter. When you sit and speak to a recruiter for the first time, be sure to let them know exactly what you’re looking for in a job. Think about what specialty and location you want to work in. When you’re shown contract options, ask about pay, insurance, benefits, how many days of orientation, time off policy, and perks. This all helps you find the perfect contract to fit your needs best.

Being prepared and staying organized will also help you and your recruiter stay on the same page. Your recruiter works to make sure the process is streamlined and that everything goes smoothly for you. As you hop from one assignment to the next, you will develop more skills and life experiences. Your part is to make sure your skills, licenses, records, and any other documents are up to date.

Benefits of a solid relationship with your recruiter

Benefits of a good relationship with your recruiter include knowing someone always has your back, being supported in your job search, and having someone to help you understand and negotiate contracts. If you’re stressed about an upcoming assignment or run into any issues, you can count on your recruiter to alleviate some of the stress and to be there for you from the beginning of the contract to the end.

Recruiters in the traveling healthcare industry will help you schedule interviews, choose the right placement, and guide you through the rest of the process. If you’re looking to find several successful assignments and create a lasting partnership, a traveling healthcare staffing agency like RTG Medical can ensure a good experience!

Get connected with a recruiter at the best healthcare travel companies!

There are many reasons to become a healthcare traveler with RTG Medical. We employ healthcare professionals to travel across the country in a variety of different healthcare settings. We want to be your traveling partner. If you’re ready to become a traveling healthcare professional, contact us today!

RTG Medical Adds Frank Madrigal as Division Manager

frankRTG Medical is proud to announce the addition of Frank Madrigal as Division Manager.

In his role, Madrigal will work closely with RTG Medical’s Director of Recruiting in managing a team of medical recruiters. As RTG Medical continues to grow and focuses on adding to their recruiting staff, Madrigal’s role will be vital in efforts to continuously provide quality service to our travelers and medical facility clients.

Madrigal brings more than 16 years of medical recruiting experience from within the Greater Omaha area. He earned a degree in Product and Project Management from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.left

Meet Suzette Shepherd, Senior Recruiter at RTG

Meet Suzette Shepherd, Senior Recruiter at RTGTo continue our series of interviews and introductions to the recruiting staff here at RTG Medical, today, we’re going to get to know a little bit more about Suzette Shepherd, Senior Recruiter at RTG!

Suzette grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, and had her first interaction with the world of medical recruiting at another staffing agency in town. But when she had her twin girls, she decided for the time being to leave work and spend more time with her family.  Continue Reading

Meet Senior Recruiter Keli Koepke

Meet Senior Recruiter Keli KoepkeThe next RTG Medical team member to be featured in our series of profiles is nine-year RTG veteran and senior recruiter Keli Koepke, who also spent two years of his RTG career as General Manager.

Keli is a wonderful example of how professionalism and experience can always be enhanced by a good sense of humor. 

You can take a look at our interview with Keli below:

RTG: What did you do before joining RTG?

Keli: I worked for a collection agency for two years. Then I started my own collection agency and ran that for two years. I was looking for something in a different industry entirely and wanted something where I could still feel like I was running my own business. The internal structure of RTG Medical interested me, and after a lunch with the COO, I decided to give it a try.

RTG: Is there a particularly sticky situation you’ve gotten a traveler out of? Continue Reading

Meet Senior Recruiter Becky Sullivan

Meet Senior Recruiter Becky SullivanWe believe that RTG Medical’s recruiting team is among the best in the industry, and we’re proud to introduce Becky Sullivan as the next recruiter to be featured in our series of profiles.

Becky has years of experience in the medical recruiting industry, so although she joined RTG only three months ago, she’s already fitting in wonderfully.

Here’s what Becky had to say in our interview: Continue Reading

Meet Senior Recruiter Molli Graham

Meet Senior Recruiter Molli Graham

In honor of the upcoming Recruiter of the Year nomination deadline, we’re getting acquainted with some of the outstanding employees who exemplify how recruiters are the heart and soul of RTG Medical.

Molli Graham, now a senior recruiter, has been with us for three years and comes to RTG through the path of broadcast journalism, where she spent more than nine years as a field reporter. Continue Reading

What Recruiters Should Know About Nursing

What Recruiters Should Know About NursingOn Monday, we talked about the different types of medical specialties that you’ll need to be familiar with as a recruiter.

What you may not have realized, however, is that there are a variety of nursing certifications and positions, too! And as a recruiter, you’ll have to be familiar with them in order to deliver the sort of high-quality performance that we expect here at RTG Medical.

You’ll need to have a basic understanding of dozens of subspecialties, like “nurse anesthetist,” “labor and delivery nurse, “pediatric nurse,” and many more. While this can seem complicated to learn at first, it’s all essential knowledge for any medical recruiter.

Here are a few basic terms that any recruiter for RTG Medical should know about nursing: Continue Reading

Recruiters’ Knowledge 101

Recruiters' Knowledge 101When researching the business of medical recruiters, you’ll often see the position referred to generically as a “travel nurse recruiter.”

What’s more, RTG Medical and its competitors are sometimes referred to as “travel nursing agencies,” and the health care workers themselves are often referred to as “nurses.”

While it may be simpler to think of things that way, a quick look at our openings shows positions like histologist, sterile processing, speech language pathology, vascular sonographer and medical laboratory technician, along with many specialties of nursing.

So really, there’s a lot more to the recruiting we do than just nursing.

If you want to be an effective recruiter for RTG Medical, you have to quickly become familiar with all of the different types of fields that we recruit for. From radiology, to therapy, to laboratory positions, we fill all sorts of positions–not just nursing–all over the 50 states.

Here’s a brief introduction to some of the fields we’re referencing: Continue Reading

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