Travel Nursing vs. Concierge Nursing: What’s the Difference?
As a profession, nursing offers a wide breadth of opportunities for those whose calling is to help others. In fact, outside of knowing they want to be a nurse, many people new to the career are often shocked to learn there are numerous career paths they can follow. The nuances among them can be confusing. Such is the case with travel nursing vs. concierge nursing. Do you know the difference?
Breaking down travel nursing
A travel nurse is a registered nurse who works at healthcare facilities on a nonpermanent or temporary basis. Rather than be a full-time member of a hospital’s staff, travel nurses take short-term assignments at different hospitals, potentially in different areas of the country. Travel nurses help fill gaps in hospital staffing and provide relief during high census periods. They can work in a variety of nursing roles, including specialty nursing and float positions.
Typically, travel nurses work with a travel nursing agency that connects nurses with hospitals seeking to fill open positions. The agency will coordinate the assignment contract and help the travel nurse navigate housing, travel, and any stipends or reimbursements. The typical length of a travel nursing assignment is 13 weeks.
Travel nurses are not being hired long-term, nor are they considered part of the hospital’s permanent staff with regard to benefits. Not all travel nursing assignments are the same, either. Assignments pay different rates based on the location, facility, and position. Travel nurses have the freedom to work in any state with which they hold a license. Travel nurses have the flexibility to move from one assignment or facility to the next, as often as they choose.
Breaking down concierge nursing
A concierge nurse is a licensed nurse who provides personalized care to patients using a subscription model outside of a clinical setting. The nurse might be self-employed or work through an agency that allocates patients directly to them. Rather than paying per service, the client pays on a retainer basis. In exchange, patients get access to ongoing, on-demand healthcare.
The services a concierge nurse offers are completely up to them, based on what they’re licensed to administer or specialize in. Concierge nurses travel to their patients. They might provide nursing care at the patient’s home, in a healthcare facility, or even on the road. This arrangement allows concierge nurses to spend more one-on-one time with their patients and provide more personalized care than they might be able to in a traditional hospital setting. It also allows the nurse to set their own schedule and take on as many or as few patients as they’d like.
Travel or concierge nursing: Choose the right path for you
Both travel nursing and concierge nursing give nurses more flexibility and control over when and where they work. But they are fundamentally different jobs that provide notably different services within the healthcare industry.
Some of the biggest benefits of travel nursing include the ability to travel to new places, work in a variety of locations, and pick up assignments when desired. Meanwhile, concierge nursing involves a lower-stress job, more facetime with patients, and the ability to work as much as you want.
Concierge nursing may not pay as much as travel nursing. Because concierge nurses are often independent, their client pool may not be as broad as the assignment offerings provided by a travel nursing agency. Additionally, concierge nursing does not come with the benefits associated with travel, like insurance or stipends. For this reason, concierge nursing is typically considered more of a “gig,” while travel nursing may be a long-term career.