Recent Articles

0

Nurses of Tomorrow Scholarship Winners for 2016

Congrats Isabelle!

Congrats, Isabelle L.!

Let’s hear it for Medical Solutions’ Nurses of Tomorrow Scholarship winners for 2016!

The lucky and hardworking nurse scholars who aced this year’s competition are:

  • Katherine W., Junior, UNMC College of Nursing in Nebraska
  • Isabelle L., Senior, Alma College in Michigan
  • Katelyn S., Junior, Concordia University in Wisconsin

Medical Solutions hosts the Nurses of Tomorrow Scholarship Contest as part of our annual Nurses Week celebration. We believe this is an important way for us to help support the nursing pipeline in the face of a national nurse shortage and ensure the development of the next generation of nurses, nurse leaders, and nurse educators.

In addition to other scholarship criteria, each entrant wrote a 250-word essay answering the question: “How do you feel that being a Nurse will change your perspective on life?”

Medical Solutions received SO many amazing entries — thank you to everyone who entered! In the end, our team of judges determined that Katherine, Isabelle, and Katelyn were at the head of the class. Here are their awesome essays.

Congrats, Katherine W.!

Congrats, Katherine W.!

“When I began nursing, I thought I knew what compassion was. Compassion is a nice word and the word prompted me to envision Clara Barton mopping up the bloody wounds of a union soldier. But now I see that compassion runs far deeper. Compassion is treating the patient calling you every name in the book with respect and dignity. Compassion is answering the call light that just went off even though you haven’t sat down all day. Compassion is taking the time to talk with your patient diagnosed with a terminal illness. Compassion is loving in the face of difficulty and sacrificing the needs of oneself for the sake of another. Not only has nursing redefined the meaning of compassion for me, it has taught me so much about how great the impact of ones’ actions can be. Who would have known that a respectful bed bath is able to provide a person with dignity? Who would have known that a nurse’s confidence and knowledge would reassure a patient frightened to their whit’s end? Who would have known that the nurses’ smile would be a person’s last memory before they pass away? It is both a privilege and a responsibility that nurses are in a prime position to have an enormous impact on the lives of those around them. Nursing is redefining what I thought I knew about life. Nursing changes the way I view the world. Nursing changes the nurse forever.” — Katherine W.

“Nearing the end of my studies, my exposure to nursing has changed my perspective on a number of practical things: I can now hold my pee longer than any human should and obsessively make beds with hospital corners, even at home when I don’t need to. Triviality aside, nursing has made monumental and fundamental changes to the way I perceive life. I thought I knew what love was, yet what I knew as love cannot compare to the emotion I’ve seen in a woman, back bent with advanced age, saying goodbye to her only sister. Companions since birth, she reassures her sister it’s OK to go, with the faith that they’ll both be OK. I thought I knew what it was to be fearless. But in truth, I have only begun to understand what it is to be unafraid, whether it’s of blood, vomit, or finding the courage to care for an individual in need of compassion and understanding as much as nursing expertise. I thought I already knew what it was to be an advocate, yet my experience of nursing has shown me the fierceness needed when advocating for patients, as well as for myself. I thought I understood gratitude. This profession will show me great sorrow, and sometimes great joy. How can I not be grateful for all of my advantages: good health, education, a supportive family? Nursing has and will make me wise beyond my years. It will make me a more committed and compassionate individual.” — Isabelle L.

Congrats, Katelyn S.!

Congrats, Katelyn S.!

“Laryngotracheobronchitis. Epistaxis. Easy medical terminology, right? But define this term: servant leadership. Sure, check my giant nursing textbooks but I am fairly certain servant leadership will not be mentioned. It is not a body part or pathological process, but rather, the simple yet significant philosophy that is transforming into the core of not only my nursing education and career, but my life. In the rawest form, servant leadership means putting other’s needs above mine. It embraces selfless caring and a dedicated attitude of compassion to fuel the vigilant care I provide. However, the real challenge rises as servant leadership carries me from clinics into communities where I can make a positive impact daily. I see servant leadership guiding how I treat my neighbors, friends, family, and even individuals who are deeply difficult to care for. Committing to servant leadership will change my life perspective as I move beyond listening not just to heart and lung sounds, but auscultating patient’s unspoken needs. Sadly, these needs are not easily met. To nurse leaders, holistic care means considering abuse, poverty, racism, addiction, malnutrition, and depression as broken parts of individuals that need just as much care as a broken bone. In my future as a nurse, I feel called to alleviate these tragedies like never before. Even when the only treatment available is my smile, my hand to hold, my shoulder to cry on, or better yet, a selfless presence. I thrive off the purpose nursing has and will give my life. — Katelyn S.

Congrats to Katherine, Isabelle, and Katelyn, our Nurses of Tomorrow Scholarship winners for 2016!

As we wait for Nurses Week and the scholarship to roll back around on the calendar, aspiring nurses and Travel Nurses to be are welcome to visit YOUniversity.MedicalSolutions.com, where we of you all kinds of resources, info, and fun that can help you unlock the wide, wonderful world of Travel Nursing!

0

Congrats to May 2016’s Traveler of the Month and Rising Star!

Donna F May 2016 Traveler of the Month

Congrats to our awesome Traveler of the Month for May 2016, Donna F.!

Many thanks and congrats to the May 2016 Traveler of the Month, Donna F., and also our Rising Star winner, Therese C.!

Traveler of the Month Donna is an RN specializing in Cardiac, who’s been in nursing for 15 years and traveling since fall of 2015. She’s currently located in Missouri and works with Career Consultant Jennifer S.

Donna’s favorite location so far has been an awesome facility in central Virginia.

“They treated me like family and the area was beautiful,” she says.

“My husband travels with me,” says Donna. “He takes care of everything while I am working. I could not do this without his support!”

Donna keeps plenty busy between her nursing career and school — she’s also a full-time student in graduate school for FNP.

“The best thing about Travel Nursing is that I get paid to go on vacation,” says Donna. “We pick a location and instead of cramming all the sightseeing into a few short days, we get 13 weeks to explore.”

This rock star nurse offers the following tips for new Travelers:

“ENJOY! Your assignment is what you make of it, take the time to explore, don’t get so wrapped up in work … Travelers have the best job in the world!”

Thank you, Donna!

rsz_therese_carlson_may_2016

Congrats to our amazing Rising Star for May 2016, Therese C., pictured here with her buddy Dexter.

Rising Star Therese is a Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist who’s been in the Cath Lab for three years. Her recruiter at Medical Solutions is Career Consultant Jackie S.

Therese liked her first Travel Nurse assignment in Oakland, California so much that she decided to extend. She’s also a fan of Florida.

“I travel with my toy poodle, Dexter. He’s made it a lot more difficult to find housing, but totally worth having him here with me — a companion in a new world,” says Therese.

Medical Solutions is always happy to help you find pet-friendly housing, Therese and Dexter!

Therese enjoys the perspective on life, locations, and colleagues that Travel Nursing offers her.

“So far my favorite thing about traveling is being able to see different places, how people do things, and just the similarities in personalities at each location,” she says.

Here are Therese’s tips for Travelers:

1. “Drive to your location, because two suitcases are just not enough! Plus, a rental car for 13+ weeks is incredibly expensive.”

2. “When you agree to an assignment get the number of required called days in writing.”

3. “Talk to other Travelers, there is so much you just don’t know.”

Great advice, Therese!

Congratulations again to the Medical Solutions May 2016 Traveler of the Month and Rising Star! Donna and Therese, we are so grateful for your hard work, rock star skills, and commitment to providing excellent patient care!

Who will be the next Medical Solutions Rising Star or Traveler of the Month? All Travelers who receive a perfect evaluation from their hospital are eligible to win these monthly awards — with Rising Star going to new Medical Solutions Travelers. Click here to learn more and maybe you could be the next winner of a $100 Visa gift card as recognition for a job well done!

0

Clinical Corner: How to Avoid Common Summer Injuries

Man with grill fire

This Grill is on Fy-ahhh! And not in the good way … be sure to keep all sources of fire in check this summer.

By Chris Vinton, Medical Solutions Quality Assurance Specialist

We’re right in the thick of the sweltering summer season. This means pool parties, bicycling, margaritas, hiking, camping, boating, and, of course, the occasional injury. In fact, July is the most dangerous month, according to the Department of Labor. These injuries range from common minor injuries such as sunburns to more serious injuries like heat stroke. You spend such a large portion of your life taking care of others’ health, but don’t forget to take the time to take care of YOU, too! Here are some tips on how to avoid common summer injuries this year:

1. Sunburns

This one is easy, yet often overlooked. Use sunscreen, even on cloudy days. Up that SPF depending on how long you will spend outside and how fair your skin is. And if you’ll be taking a dip, I recommend following this wise rhyme: “Don’t be shy, reapply!”

2. Strains and Sprains

The most common injury ever! Avoid overexerting yourself and wear proper clothing and footwear for the activity you are doing.

Sun protection woman

Don’t Be Shy, Reapply! Choose your SPF wisely and slather up to avoid sunburns.

3. Fire

Everyone likes fire until it gets out of control. Only start fires in fire pits that are not close to any dry brush. Keep a fire deterrent such as a bucket of water or a fire extinguisher near.

4. Lawn Mowers 

Be sure whatever you are mowing is clear or any debris that could be thrown by the lawnmower blades. Make sure nothing is in the way of your mower and never mess with it unless you are sure that it is turned off.

5. Dehydration

If you are outside and active, you need to be drinking 6 ounces of water every 15 minutes. Normally women need about 2.2 liters and men need about 3 liters of water a day. If you’re outdoors and sweating (or glistening) then you need to up your water game. Remember alcohol will make you more dehydrated, so be sure you’re drinking water in between those beers!

6. Bug Bites

woman drinks water

Water, Water, Everywhere! Be sure to stay hydrated in the face of hot temps and increased outdoor activity.

Unfortunately, summer means bugs are back. Avoid mosquitos and ticks by using insect repellant and covering up with breathable long-sleeved clothes. Keep an eye on any bug bites you happen to receive and if you have a “bulls-eye” bug bite, see your doctor immediately.

7. “Hold My Beer” Moments

If anyone says that phrase or any phrase like it, do not let that person do whatever it is they are planning on doing. “Hold my beer” is usually said before someone tries to ride a skateboard off a roof, launch their car over a pool, or light up 30 fireworks at the same time. While the end results can be pretty rad, the chances of someone getting injured are exceptionally high and some risks should never be taken.

Summer can be a load of fun but can also be dangerous. Be sure you’re being safe no matter what activity you’re doing and always be aware of your surroundings. Trust your gut instincts! Be safe and enjoy the rest of your summer.

0

Going Back to School with Medical Solutions

Earn your BSN degree

The Online RN to BSN Academy is available across the U.S. So you can earn your BSN degree whenever and wherever you are!

With the end of summer in sight, and local stores stocking up on school supplies, you might find yourself wondering about the next step in your Travel Nursing career. You’ve always wanted to go back to school, but you’ve been holding back. You think it wouldn’t fit your nomadic lifestyle, or maybe you’re worried about the financial burden. Whatever your doubts, know that Medical Solutions is here for you.

We know how important professional development can be for your career. That’s why Medical Solutions has teamed up with Nebraska Methodist College to help busy Travel Nurses like you earn your BSN degree. Medical Solutions also provides financial assistance to our Travel Nurses with at least one assignment under their belt. It’s just one of the many benefits we offer our awesome Travelers.

If you’re still not convinced, here are just a few more reasons why you should earn your BSN degree through our RN to BSN Academy with Nebraska Methodist College:

  • It’s 100% online so you can learn at your convenience
  • The program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • You can earn your BSN degree in roughly 7 semesters
  • Multiple start dates throughout the year allow you to schedule with flexibility
  • Medical Solutions offers financial assistance to our Travelers in this program

So, let’s recap. As a Medical Solutions Travel Nurse, you have an opportunity to further your career while still working and get paid for it. When you put it like that, the decision practically makes itself. It’s time to advance your career and become a leader in the healthcare field.

To learn more about our RN to BSN program with NMC, click here or contact your Career Consultant today!

0

Roundup River Ranch 2016: Lisa’s Story

RRR-girl.w.horse

Travel Nurse Bonds With Kids at Summer Camp

This month, we continue our inside look at the incredible work being done at Roundup River Ranch, a free summer camp for children with severe diseases. Medical Solutions, a longtime supporter of this cause, has donated more than $5,000 directly to the Colorado-based camp this year, helped recruit some of the nurses, and funded a portion of their pay for the summer.

One such Medical Solutions Travel Nurse, Lisa, S., RN, joins us today to explain why her Travel Nursing experience this summer has reinforced her desire to help children.

Travel Nurse Lisa

Lisa S., RN, won’t soon forget the lessons she learned from the kids at Roundup River Ranch.

Thanks for chatting with Medical Solutions, Lisa. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Sure, I’m an RN specializing in Emergency Room nursing, and I’ve been a nurse for 6 years. I started traveling about 15 months ago. This is my first summer at Roundup River Ranch.

What inspired you to work there for the summer?

I worked as a camp counselor each summer between the ages of 14-21 and loved it. I never expected that I’d be able to return to camp as an adult. At my last assignment at Children’s Hospital, I spoke with a number of nurses there who had volunteered at Roundup River Ranch. They all had wonderful experiences. The decision basically made itself. I feel incredibly lucky to work with an amazing cadre of medical professionals and absolutely awe-inspiring kids. Plus, it’s so fun to be in here in the Colorado mountains in gorgeous weather!

How did you hear about this opportunity? From my incredible recruiter Keahna W. at Medical Solutions (thank you Keahna!)

How has your camp experience at Roundup River Ranch changed your personal and professional outlook?

My time at Children’s gave me a peek at how incredible and resilient children with chronic illness can be. My time at camp has given me the chance to actually get to know them, care for them for a longer time, and appreciate their experiences so much more. This camp leaves me so much more excited for more experience working with children. I also have a better understanding now of what I’m capable of as a nurse and as a person.

What types of memories from this camp will you take back to your life as an RN?

I will remember numerous smiling faces, and kids of all ages conquering their fears in favor of fun and joy. I also won’t forget the incredible bond I made with my Roundup family.

Which ones stand out as the most rewarding and why?

The most rewarding part was watching these kids overcome their personal obstacles. I witnessed pure joy in the face of so many challenges. We all have obstacles we face, and the degree of grace that we approach them with varies. Personally, I know I have been guilty of making a small problem into a much larger one in my head. These children really put things into perspective, and I hope to truly draw upon these memories moving forward in my life.

What wouldRoundup River Ranch Logo you tell other nurses about this camp and would you recommend going back?

I would definitely recommend going back. I would tell other nurses that in some ways you will work harder and longer then you ever have before, but it will be so worth it!

What will you miss the most when camp is over?

I’ll miss the kids, the family we have here at camp, and the beauty of living in the mountains.

If you loved reading about Lisa’s summer, look for the final installment on Medical Solutions’ Roundup River Ranch series next month. You can also look back on Kelli C’s experience at the camp here or learn more about this amazing summer camp at RoundupRiverRanch.org.

0

Join Rally, Earn Free Gift Cards!

UHC RallyAs a Medical Solutions Traveler, one of your many benefits is access to health insurance through United Healthcare — starting at just $15 a week for a basic, single policy. I’m a United Healthcare user myself, and recently discovered a really cool program called Rally, which United Healthcare offers all their insurance users. In the past two months, I’ve earned $100 in gift cards through this free program, so needless to say, I am big fan. Read on to learn about all the perks that come with United Healthcare’s Rally Program and how you too can get free gift cards!

To join Rally, simply log in to your UHC account at UHC.com, then click the Rally ad in the slider or the tab that reads “Rally Health Survey” to get started.

UHC Rally

UHC offers Rally, and Medical Solutions offers Travelers UHC insurance starting at just $15 per week for a single, basic policy!

Once you’re all signed up, you can get a free $25 gift card right away for completing a quick health survey that offers you personalized tips on how to achieve your optimum health. You can also earn gift cards for doing a healthcare cost estimate and completing three Missions (more on Missions below). Because we all have our own preferences, Rally lets you choose your gift card from a TON of retailers, including Amazon, Target, and Starbucks!

Rally Rewards is a tab where you can view your rewards and check for new opportunities. You can also track the Rally coins you earn for most actions on the website and spend them on entries to win prizes. Some of the prizes currently available as I write this are an iPad mini, Fire HD 7 Tablet, Apple Watch, Amazon Echo, GermGuardian Air Cleaning System, Fitbit Aria, Oster Digital Food Steamer, and a Starbucks gift card.

Rally Missions are a great way to stay on track with your wellness goals while earning coins and other rewards. Each mission falls under one of four categories: Move, Eat, Feel, and Care. Some of my favorite missions so far are Be Grateful Each Day, Cook at Home More, Work up a Sweat, Focus on Fruits and Veggies, and Do Something Creative — but there are dozens of missions covering all aspects of personal wellness, so there’s something for everybody! Users check in to share progress on their missions, which earns them coins and free gift cards when they hit certain milestones.

Rally Challenges lets users join public challenges, like virtual races, as well as private ones. Users earn coins for challenges and there’s also a handy page for viewing your completed challenges.

Rally Communities is a way for users to gain support and join conversations related to specific physical and mental health concerns. The communities are centered on topics like Fitness and Exercise, Food and Nutrition, Living Mindfully, Women’s Health, Parenting, Stress and Anxiety, as well as allergies, specific diseases and conditions, specific forms of exercise, and much more.

In summary, if you’re on United Healthcare’s insurance Rally offers you fun, free, user-friendly tools to help manage your wellness. Whether you’re into that or I had you at free gift cards (or both!), let’s Rally!

0

Share Your Snapshot Photo Contest Winners!

Medical Solutions has crowned the Share Your Snapshot Photo Contest Winners. We put out the call for awesome snapshots of your lives in Travel Nursing and the way you answered absolutely blew us and our expectations away.

Whether you were in front of or behind the camera, at the top of the world or under the sea, with your BFF or man’s best friend, THANK YOU for sharing such outstanding snapshots of your life as a Travel Nurse!

And the winners are …

People Category
Jessica S.
Courtney T.

Adventure Category
Nicole S.
Adrienne O.

Landscape/Cityscape Category
Caleb C.
Mary Ann B.

Pets Category
Laurie F.
Jocelyn G.

It cannot be overstated that we received SO many amazing submissions for this contest, which made judging it incredibly difficult. Whether you won this contest or not, our team is totally inspired by all of you and you are clearly winning at the Travel Nurse life!

Here are the winning photos from the Share Your Snapshot Photo Contest:

Travel Nurse Picture

Thank you, Courtney T., for this awesome picture. We HEART you!

Travel Nurse Photo

Congrats, Jessica S.! What a good-lookin’ crew of folks!

Travel Nurse Photo

Congrats, Adrienne O.! Now THAT’S an adventure!

Travel Nurse Photo

Might as well JUMP, Nicole S.! Thanks for the rad picture, and may you have many more great adventures in Travel Nursing.

Travel Nurse Photo

Woah, Caleb C! We love that your landscape includes such a starry, starry night. Congrats!

Travel Nurse Photo

Congrats, Mary Ann B.! This unique landscape makes our imaginations run wild in the best way!

Travel Nurse Photo

Jocelyn G., you’ve outdone yourself with this gem! Your canine pal is very lucky to have you — and quite photogenic to boot!

Travel Nurse Photo

Congrats, Laurie F.! Who wouldn’t fall in love with this pup?!

0

Clinical Corner: 9 Quick Tips for Rocking Your Travel Nurse Performance Evaluation

perfect hospital evaluation

Rock your Travel Nurse performance eval like the rock star you are!

By Chris Vinton, Medical Solutions Quality Assurance Specialist

At the end of every Travel Nursing assignment you take with Medical Solutions, the hospital is given a form to evaluate your performance. Performance evaluations are a reflection of you and the work you put in at each hospital. These evaluations will stay with you for your entire career at Medical Solutions, so it is important to have some rock star level performance evaluations!

Performance evaluations cover everything from clinical skills to communication between you and full-time staff to personal hygiene. The factors you’re rated on are intentionally broad and cover a wide range of topics, so to help you prepare, here are 9 quick tips for rocking your Travel Nurse performance evaluation:

  1. Focus on patient care.
  2. Be aware of the hospital’s policies and follow these policies.
  3. Document appropriately.
  4. Remember the five rights of medication administration.
  5. Be courteous and respectful to patients and staff.
  6. Communicate with your team and doctors.
  7. Do not be late for shifts.
  8. Ask your team and charge nurse questions.
  9. Shower — and otherwise maintain your personal hygiene.

Every assignment you take will be different, every hospital will have different policies, and you will always have a new team to work with. In order to rock performance evaluations, you need to adapt to every situation you find yourself in. There will always be different policies or ways of documenting. However, the one thing that is constant in every assignment you take is you. You have the power to communicate effectively, treat patients how you would want to be treated, and follow hospital policies. Not to get too motivational speaker sounding, but you’ve totally got this — you have the skill and will to adapt and wow the hospitals, your patients, and all the teams you will work with!

Performance evaluations are an important part of Travel Nursing. They reveal quite a bit of information about both Travelers and hospitals. This will help your Career Consultant find optimum facilities for you where you would be a perfect fit. It also helps our Client Managers learn more about the culture of each hospital. Remember that these performance evaluations reflect your work and if you are a rock star, then you will get an awesome performance eval!

0

Congrats to April 2016’s Traveler of the Month and Rising Star!

Tess C Travel Nurse

Congrats to our Traveler of the Month, Tess C.!

Many thanks and congrats to the April 2016 Traveler of the Month, Theresa “Tess” C., and also our Rising Star winner, Anesha E.!

Traveler of the Month Tess is a Staff Nurse and Educator in Perioperative Services who has worked with Career Consultant Jennifer B.

Although Tess is not currently on a travel assignment, she’s been a nurse since 1976 and has worked as a Travel Nurse since the early 2000s.

Tess’ favorite assignment location so far was in California, between San Francisco and Sacramento.

“I was able to pursue my passion for teaching with the full support of the staff,” she says. “The whole experience there was incredibly rewarding.”

Tess travels solo, preferring to fully focus on her job, but she says her husband Andrew is very supportive while she’s away and takes great care of the couple’s cat, Teddy.

Want to hear a fun fact about Teddy — as well as Tess and Andrew, too? They live across the pond!

Tess C. Travel Nurse

Tess (middle) and her most recent team.

“Since 2013 I have lived in Brittany, North-Western France, in the medieval town of Dinan,” says Tess. “I’ve had the pleasure of living in Europe for the last 15 years, mostly in the UK as my husband is British.”

Wow. Tess really knows how to put the “Travel” in Travel Nursing!

“I love Travel Nursing as it allows me the flexibility of choosing work around my personal schedule, great travel, and educational opportunities,” she says.

Here are Tess’ tips for new Travel Nurses:

  1. “Be professional at all times, to your company and to your work colleagues.”
  2. “Always maintain good communication with your recruiter and support staff. Difficult situations inevitably arise from time to time, and the company has always been of great help and support to me.”
  3. “Relax and enjoy it!”

Thanks, Tess!

Anesha E Travel Nurse Ty

Congrats to April’s Rising Star Anesha E., pictured here with her adorable dog, Ty.

Rising Star Anesha is an OR Surgical Tech currently on assignment in Alabama. She’s been a Surgical Tech since 2006 and has been traveling since 2015. Her specialty is Neuro, but she also dabbles in general, OB/GYN, vascular, and ENT.

Anesha E Travel Nurse

Rising Star Anesha enjoys the Travel Nurse lifestyle both on and off the job.

Anesha’s recruiter at Medical Solutions is Career Consultant Sharon H., and her favorite location so far has been in western Iowa.

“The people were really nice, and the doctors were as well, which made my hospital a good place to work,” she says.

Anesha loves the color blue and working out — especially cycling, walking, kickboxing, yoga, pilates, and circuit classes. She travels with her dog “Ty” — an 8-year-old, 11-pound, half schnauzer/half dachshund.

“I like travel nursing because it gives me the opportunity for my work to finally speak for itself and I get to see the world while doing what I do best,” says Anesha.

Her advice for new Travelers?

“Remember to take it one day at a time on each assignment because each day does get better, and don’t get discouraged or overwhelmed by the size of the facility because either way you can only do one room at a time.”

Awesome advice, Anesha!

Anesha E Travel Nurse Dog Ty

Ty is ready to hit the road!

Congratulations again to the Medical Solutions April 2016 Traveler of the Month and Rising Star!

Tess and Anesha, we are so grateful for your hard work, rock star skills, and commitment to providing excellent patient care!

Who will be the next Medical Solutions Rising Star or Traveler of the Month?

All Travelers who receive a perfect evaluation from their hospital are eligible to win these monthly awards — with Rising Star going to new Medical Solutions Travelers.

Click here to learn more about the Traveler of the Month program, and maybe just maybe YOU could be the next winner of a $100 Visa gift card as recognition for a job well done!
0

Roundup River Ranch 2016: Kelli’s Journey

Roundup River Ranch provides a safe space for children with serious illnesses to experience the joys of summer camp.

Travel Nurse Finds Inspiration at Special Summer Camp

Roundup River Ranch, initially envisioned by actor Paul Newman, is a free summer camp for children with serious illnesses. With medical support from healthcare professionals, these children can try activities they’ve never done before, build their confidence, and make new friendships.

Medical Solutions, a proud contributor to this amazing program, has inspired several Travel Nurses to work at the Colorado-based camp. You can read more about Medical Solutions’ past involvement here.

This summer, three Travel Nurses have shared their journeys of self-discovery at Roundup River Ranch. Take a second to read about Kelli C., NRP, RN, and her incredible experience at the camp so far:

Kelli

Kelli C., NRP, RN, believes Roundup River Ranch rejuvenated her passion for nursing.

Thanks for taking the time to chat today, Kelli. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

“I am a Paramedic/RN. I am currently a flight nurse for Medical Air Rescue based in Rapid City, SD.  I was a Travel Nurse from 2012 until June 2015. Medical Solutions has kept in contact with me since my departure from travel life, and thus, I found my way to Roundup River Ranch this summer. I couldn’t be more grateful for this experience. It was definitely God putting me right where I needed to be!”

What inspired you to work at Roundup River Ranch for the summer?

“This is my first summer at Roundup River Ranch. Honestly, what isn’t inspiring about this camp? After I submitted my application, I immediately went to their website. I fell in love with the kids and their stories.

I love working with kids, and unfortunately, I usually only get to see them in their most critical-life-threatening moments. I found myself smiling, and a little emotional as I browsed through the photo gallery, read testimonies, and reviews. I knew coming to Roundup River Ranch was exactly what I was looking for. The peace in my heart was overwhelming.”

How has your camp experience at Roundup River Ranch changed your personal and professional outlook?  Would you say you’ve become a better nurse?

“No one can prepare you for your experience at Roundup River Ranch. For me it began as a struggle. I grew up in an alcohol and drug infested family, and lived half of my life on the reservation. Working in emergency medicine had also hardened my emotions and the ability to feel those emotions.

Camp training seemed very similar to what I would call “group therapy.” I was reluctant to participate, and noticed an uncomfortable anxiety in myself. For so many years, I had not allowed myself to feel — I have always been the person in control, strong-willed, and the one people come to for support. Honestly, I didn’t know if I could do what was being asked of me. I was in my panic zone and shed many tears multiple nights.

As I continued to stretch myself in the efforts of “caring and sharing,” I realized there is a difference between feeling and feelings, and how disconnected mine had become. I came to realize that It was OK to be human and to feel. I have always viewed vulnerability as weakness, but it’s the exact opposite. Vulnerability takes immense strength.

Once session was in full swing, it finally came full circle for me. I embraced camp! I found myself putting on tutus, random costumes on a daily basis, dancing, being silly, and just being a kid again. Before, I didn’t know if I could take care of the campers, and still interact with them, laugh with them, cry with them. Through the “magic of camp” and God’s grace, I was able to do all of the above.

The support from my co-workers and staff at Roundup River Ranch was over the top. It was also something that has been missing from my adult professional life. It grieves my heart that the field of medicine has a difficult time embracing such a culture. For me, Roundup River Ranch has been a place of healing, and because of this, I am evolving into a new person and a better care provider.”

What types of memories from this camp will you take back to your life as an RN? Which ones stand out as the most rewarding and why?Roundup River Ranch Logo

“I will take all of Roundup River Ranch with me and empower others. I have learned and improved in multiple realms of life. The kids and their stories will be my biggest memory. Their struggle in life is like the challenge course. They have a 40-foot rock wall and 300-foot zip line towering over them, whispering “You can’t.” They nervously put their helmets and harness on, quietly express fears, and cling tightly to staff. But then, the constant cheering and clapping gets them started, and their determination finishes it. Watching this process can only be expressed through shared tears and hugs.”

What would you tell other nurses about this camp and would you recommend going back?

“I would tell other nurses, deep down inside, our professional path can weigh heavily on our souls, whether we want to admit it or not. Sometimes, we need to be a part of the healing process. River Ranch Roundup is that place. It is the place of escape from all that drains our strength and puts us on a destructive path of compassion fatigue. If one lets it, Roundup River Ranch can help begin the process of rejuvenation. I would come back in a heartbeat! Like I mentioned above, the support and enthusiasm is intoxicating.”

What will you miss the most when camp is over?

“I will miss the kids! Their smiles, laughter, dancing, and care-free, no-worries attitudes are refreshing. Their innate strength to fight every day with a positive outlook despite the challenges dealt them is inspiring. I will also miss the supportive environment, staff, and co-workers. Roundup River Ranch wants you to be the best you can be. They meet you right where you are, and help you grow … it’s the magic of camp!”

Stay tuned all summer to read more about Medical Solutions’ Travel Nurses’ amazing stories at the Roundup River Ranch. You can also visit RoundupRiverRanch.org to learn more about this incredible summer camp experience.

Page 1 of 3412345...102030...Last »