MedPro Blog

Overcoming Illness While on a Travel Assignment

All of us get sick at one time or another. In fact, it’s surprising that healthcare professionals don’t become ill more often than they do, due to the fact that healthcare professionals work with ill people.

But what happens if you’re on a travel assignment and you become ill? What should you do? Can you “call in sick?” If you do, will you be taken off your assignment? What if you’re so sick, you can’t go to your assignment for several days? Will you get to extend your assignment? Can your healthcare staffing firm “force” you to go to work, even if you’re sick?

These are legitimate and interesting questions. Here are some tips to help you when you become sick.

1) Naturally, it’s helpful if you don’t become sick; then the question becomes moot. Eat well, get enough rest, exercise, and take all the steps you know you should to prevent becoming ill: drink plenty of fluids, keep hand sanitizer with you and use it, avoid people who are ill (yeah, right, we hear you say…).

2) If you do become sick, the first thing you should do is to call your assignment supervisor and then the staffing manager at your travel staffing service.

3) The reason for calling both? Depending on how ill you are, you might have to go in to work. After all, the hospital or other healthcare facility at which you’re assigned needs you; otherwise it wouldn’t have asked the traveling staffing firm to fill a position.

4) Chances are the hospital will be fine with you taking a day or two off. You also may be able to extend your assignment to make up for the days you missed.

5) However, if you come down with a case of the flu or some other serious illness and you will need to stay in bed for several days, your hospital manager and staffing manager may decide to get a replacement for you.

6) If that happens, your staffing manager will let you know as soon as such a decision is made. Illness situations tend to be decided on a case-by-case basis. Your staffing manager will work with you to see if another assignment at the same facility may be taken once you’re well. If not, your staffing manager will work with you to arrange for you to return home once you’re healthy enough to travel.

Whether you’re a nurse, physical therapist, speech therapist, occupational therapist, or other allied health professional with a hankering to see the country and serve people in a variety of medical settings, contact MedPro Healthcare Staffing. Contact us today to learn more about the many travel assignments we offer.