Battling COVID-19 Burnout Among Clinicians

Healthcare worker burnout is by no means a new topic. It has been widely discussed and an active topic among the healthcare community for years now. But the mounting concerns of the high stress situations of COVID-19 have brought the topic of burnout to the forefront, and addressing it is more important than ever.

What’s going to turn the tide is the ability of hospitals and healthcare organizations to be proactive in recognizing the issue and offering solutions to their healthcare workers. Many nurses and physicians feel that they’re voices are lost in the shuffle when trying to communicates the problem of burnout.

What Causes Burnout?

A variety of factors can attribute to healthcare worker burnout. One of which right now is staffing issues. Hospitals are once again overburdened by new patients infected by the Delta variant of COVID-19. Hospital beds are filling up, but the amount of staff isn’t changing, causing a much larger workload for nurses and doctors.

Luckily, hospitals and healthcare facilities do have the benefit of using staffing agencies, who can tap into a wider resource of healthcare workers across the country to bring in the much needed help. The benefit of a staffing agency to handle the sourcing, credentialing and onboarding is a huge relief for hospital administrators who can then concentrate on their current staff. The addition of travel nurses into a hospital will alleviate a lot of the burden staff nurses are currently handling.

Other factors contribute to burnout as well. These include but aren’t limited to, non-stop scheduling, stressful work environments and more. These issues were present before the pandemic but are only amplified by the spread of COVID-19.

Even before the pandemic began, healthcare workers were battling burnout. Several years ago, an estimated figure of nearly 40% of nurses reported having some level of stress, exhaustion, or emotional strain due to burnout. The pandemic has only lengthened and heightened those pain points for clinicians.

What Can Be Done?

Undiagnosed burnout can lead to both the detriment of the clinician, the patient and the organization as as whole, so it’s important to recognize it, report it, and take steps to encourage help. An overworked and burnt out healthcare worker will many times lead to a decreased level of care for patients according to experts.

So what can be done?

Firstly, employers, like hospitals or other healthcare facilities, can take steps to get ahead of the problem. A simple check-in with employees can go a long way.

How are you feeling? Is there anything stressing you out more than usual? What can we do to alleviate that stress?

Even a simple survey to gauge the temperature of an employee can mean so much! You’d be surprised the feedback you can get from a simple survey.

We have to remember, a lot of times, like any job, healthcare workers and employees want to know that their concerns are being heard and recognized.

When we know what could be causing burnout, we can react quickly to any issues. If a nurse is feeling bogged down by paperwork, it would be best to hire more support staff to handle the administrative tasks. If the actual stress of the day-to-day duties is wearing a healthcare worker down, then extended time off or some PTO could work wonders. Even more flexible schedules can benefit more healthcare workers.

The point is, having an open communication line from management to frontline workers is the first step in fighting burnout! Employers and healthcare facilities can utilize support programs, meaningful tracking, and staffing agencies like Ardor Health to help supplement their staff with fresh, ready, and determined healthcare professionals who are ready to deliver care and passions wherever they go.

Find Your Next School Job Job from 2019-2020 with Ardor Health

Before you know it, summer will be over and fall will be here! Are you ready for your next school assignment? Ardor Health’s School Division has been placing therapy travelers in a variety of different school assignments all over the country for almost two decades. We’re here to help find you the best possible school position for your set of skills, that way you can do what you best; help the students at all of these school districts.

Choosing the Perfect School Assignment

Traveling for a school contract can be one of the most rewarding experiences in your career. The ability to use your skills, whether they be in speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy or special education, is such a rewarding feeling when coupled with helping a student. That’s why Ardor Health promises to always take care of the little things about travel assignments. That means you’ll never have to worry about negotiating the contract, finding housing, or searching for the right position. That’s why we’re here.

Right now, we have the below open school positions all over the country:

  • Speech Language Pathologist
  • Speech Language Pathology Assistants
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants
  • Physical Therapists
  • Physical Therapy Assistants
  • School Nurses
  • School Psychologists
  • Special Education Teachers
  • CFYs
  • Teletherapists
  • School Audiologists

A Location You Love and Benefits You Can Count On

Over the years, Ardor Health has secured partnerships with some of the biggest school systems across the country, that way you can have as many options as possible. Whether you want to work in a small remote area of the country, or travel to a robust city, we have you covered!

In addition to location, Ardor Health offers a variety of ultra-competitive pay packages and benefits to all of our travelers. You’re traveling and working hard to care for a school system’s children, so you should be treated to generous benefits and pay.

We offer:

  • Competitive Pay Packages
  • Weekly Pay
  • Medical, Dental and Vision Insurance
  • Pet Insurance
  • Supplemental Insurance Options
  • Superior Medical Coverage
  • Employee Assistance Programs
  • Matching 401(k) Retirement and Savings Plan
  • Liability Insurance
  • Paid Travel
  • Private Housing
  • Licensing Assistance

If you have additional questions, don’t forget to head over to Ardor Health’s School FAQ! 

Before you know it, the 2019-2020 school year will be upon us! Take the opportunity now to search our job database and find the job you’ve been looking for! Or simply click that chat box at the bottom right of your screen and learn more!

Podcasts: A Travel Therapist and Travel Nurse’s Best Friend

Whether you’re a Traveling Therapist or Traveling Nurse, you know that the travel time between assignments can be quite long, and for lack of a better word, boring! A lot of experienced travelers have come up with different ways to pass the time on the way to their next assignment, whether it be by plane or car. Some popular ways to occupy your time are: ebooks, audio books (like Audible), creating new playlists on your favorite streaming service, or even bringing a portable gaming system with you. But there are still a lot of healthcare travelers out there who have not discovered the amazing world of podcasts!

What is a podcast?

Travel Nursing Podcasts and Travel Therapy Podcasts are plentiful. Whether you want to brush up on the latest trends in Travel Nursing or discover some of the best places to work as a Physical Therapist. And of course, there are podcasts for any kind of hobby you can imagine. Podcasts are an episode-based show that cover a range of topics from movies to politics and from gardening to history. So which should you listen to?

Why listen to podcasts?

Travel Therapists and Travel Nurses have a variety of reasons to want to subscribe to a weekly rotation of nursing podcasts and therapy podcasts. In addition to offering a level of entertainment, podcasts have the ability to provide you with the latest up-to-date information about any particular topic in your healthcare field of choice. The most popular podcasts in your field will typically be some of the most well researched topics to listen to. Don’t like a topic that week? Simple. Skip it and wait for next week’s!

Where to find the podcast that’s right for you?

So where can you find them? There are several platforms where you can find podcasts. The most popular would arguably be the ‘Podcast’ app on your Apple or Android phone. After that, Spotify, Audible, and iHeartRadio are other services that offer a variety of podcasts.

Popular Nursing Podcasts

So you’re a Travel Nurse and you want to listen to some podcasts. Which should you download first? See below for some of the best travel nursing podcasts today!

1. Good Nurse Bad Nurse: Good Nurse Bad Nurse is a light-hearted and fun podcast hosted by a registered nurse and special guests who take turns telling you two nursing related stories. One is uplifting and inspirational, the other is dark and mysterious!

2. Nursing Uncensored: Nursing uncensored is a series of conversations about everything on the minds of nurses. Hosted by Adrianne Behning.

3. The Daily Nurse: Daily Nurse’s podcast is called Nursecasts: A Podcast for Nurses By Nurses, and it delivers – topics such as maternal mortality, the rise of the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, and simulation labs are covered with expert hosting from people who know life in the trenches of the ER.

4. Your Next Shift: This nursing podcast offers listeners a dynamic listening experience. Host Elizabeth Scala provides both practical tactics and universal truths to the world of nursing

5. Cup of Nurses: A nursing podcast, where the hosts tackle current events and other hot nursing related topics one conversation at a time.

Popular Therapy Podcasts (PT,SLP and OT):

  1. Healthy Wealthy and Smart: The Healthy Wealthy & Smart podcast with Dr. Karen Litzy features top experts in physical therapy, wellness and entrepreneurship. We give you the information and inspiration you need to take your life and career to the next level.
  2. PT PintCast: This podcast is unique and fun! The showrunners talk all things physical therapy and enjoy a cold brew while doing it! What’s not to love?
  3. Move Forward PT: The Move Forward Radio podcast offers unique interviews with physical therapists and other health care experts providing tips on prevention and information about treatment.
  4. Therapy Insiders: UpDoc Media’s main podcast, Therapy Insiders, is hosted by Gene Shirokobrod, Erson Religioso, and Joe Palmer. This podcast comprises a wide range of topics, including job market insights, career advice, and clinical tips. Guests are typically industry entrepreneurs and thought leaders, including WebPT’s own Heidi Jannenga, PT, DPT, ATC.
  5. Conversations in Speech Pathology: Join speech-language pathologist Jeff Stepen as he interviews a variety of professionals, parents, and other assorted characters about topics related to the practice of speech pathology/therapy.
  6. The ASHA Podcast Series: Every three to four weeks, the ASHA Podcasts features a new interview with a person that is making news in the professions of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology.
  7. StutterTalk: StutterTalk is the first and longest running podcast on stuttering. Since 2007 they have published more than 600 podcasts which are heard in 180 countries.
  8. Everyday Evidence: How does evidence affect everyday problems? AOTA’s Everyday Evidence Podcast series has the answers. They sort through the evidence and bring you the most important information that relates to everyday life in a short podcast format.
  9.  Occupied: Brock Cook started the Occupied Podcast to help connect OTs around the world. He interviews OTs and discusses and explore what occupational therapy looks like all over the world.
  10. Listen to Pediatrics Podcast: These recorded audio conversations among experts are FREE and open to nonmembers, with the latest tips and resources on pediatric practice in Occupational Therapy.

This is just a short list of podcasts that you may find helpful for your specialty! Keep in mind, we didn’t even cover some of the other popular general podcasts, we’ll leave that to you! Remember, there’s no limit to the amount of podcasts you can subscribe to, and they are all FREE! Happy Listening!

5 Ways To Celebrate Occupational Therapy Month: 2019

Occupational Therapy Month is here! In April, we take the time to appreciate all the value Occupational Therapists add to our lives through their holistic and therapeutic approach. This is a great opportunity to celebrate all of the OTs out there and take the time to show them how much we appreciate their positive effect on our lives! We’ve compiled a list of 5 different ways to show your appreciation and celebrate this wonderful profession!

1. Share a Personal OT Story

Do you have a personal story where an Occupational Therapist has made an impact on your life? What about a family member? Share that story! April is a great month to take to social media or your local circle and spread the word about how an Occupational Therapist helped you recover from an injury you may have sustained in your life. Share those success stories and at the same time educate those who maybe aren’t familiar with the amazing benefits of Occupational Therapy.

2. Take Some Time to Celebrate

This one’s for all of the Occupational Therapists out there…treat yourselves! Throw a party at work, take an extended lunch break or take that glorious half-work day! (As long as their’s no clients that need to be seen obviously) You deserve it! And Occupational Therapy Month is the perfect time to celebrate.

3. Share the Love

What better way to share the love for your fellow Occupational Therapists than on social media! Start a post and share it with friends and family about the impacts OT Life has had on you. Are you a traveling Occupational Therapist? Share that too! People love seeing their colleagues out and about exploring their world and excelling in their career as well. Whether you’re climbing a nearby mountain or surfing a close to home beach, the Travel OT Life is not one that should be kept secret.

4. Growth

According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, Occupational Therapy is set to grow by 24% all the way through 2024. This means it’s more important than ever to educate those around you, especially the younger generation, about the importance of Occupational Therapy in our lives.

5. Continue Your Own Personal Growth

Continuing education is a great way to grow on a personal level. Occupational Therapy, like many healthcare industries, never stops growing and changing. One of the great things is you can always be growing on a personal and professional level because of this. Try to find a course or class that interests you the most and take it! Those new skills will translate directly to your workplace and your patients.

So there you have it! These are just a few ways to celebrate OT Month this April. Remember to use the hashtag #OTMonth to stand out! A big thank you from all of us Ardor Health to all of our OTs! So how have OTs affected your life?

And don’t forget, Traveling OT Jobs are some of the best ways to live the #OTLife to the fullest. View open opportunities here! 

Top 5 Travel Therapy And Nursing States This Spring

Are you considering a traveling nurse or therapy assignment this Spring? Of course you are! What better way to shake off the cold then to visit some of the country’s most desirable locations during the spring. We’ve narrowed down five of the best warm-weather destinations for travel nurses and therapists to keep in mind. This list is based on their excellent weather, access to cultural attractions, and availability of assignments in world-class healthcare facilities, these are the five destinations you should consider for your summer assignment.

Florida

This may seem like an obvious choice, but it’s definitely worth mentioning. Florida has year-round warm weather and some of the best beaches in the country. In addition, Florida also garnishes some of the top billing rates during Spring Break for Travel Therapists alike.

California

This may seem like another obvious choice, but California is a must see location basically anytime of the year, so why not start with Spring? If you dream of the southern California lifestyle, consider taking a travel assignment in San Diego, the city that has it all or venturing to San Francisco.

Texas

Texas has multiple cities filled with healthcare professionals and a vibrant lifestyle. Houston is the ideal travel nursing destination if you want to learn more about cutting-edge cancer care. The city’s MD Anderson Cancer Center is a research hub for this illness. You’ll also find plenty of nightlife, a thriving theater district, and easy access to some of the best beaches in the United States.

Oregon

Warm temperatures that never hit sweltering, a bike-friendly environment, and tons of quaint bookstores and coffee shops make Portland a hit with travel nurses and therapists who are craving adventure. You can easily take day trips to both the mountains and the ocean. Best of all, travel assignments at facilities such as the VA Medical Center are plentiful.

New York

As the snow begins to melt, now is the time to secure a position in New York. Whether you prefer the city or the country, New York has it all! From the bustling streets of NYC to the beautiful countryside, there’s something for any travel therapist or travel nurse.

Can’t make up your mind? We get it! Feel free to browse all of Ardor Health’s open positions right now and choose the Spring Break Travel Destination that’s right for you!

Top 4 Benefits of Occupational Therapy for Those Who Have Cancer

Adults with cancer often experience symptoms that impact their quality of life and make it difficult to work, travel, and perform their daily activities. Occupational therapists offer supportive services for cancer patients that can manage the impact of the disease and the associated treatments.

Improved function lowers the risk for long-term disability and decreases mortality rates. Despite these benefits, occupational therapy (OT) services remain underused by cancer patients, likely due to lack of knowledge and accessibility. Here some OT myths that have been debunked.

Occupational therapists seek to increase a patient’s functional capacity with a range of tools and techniques depending on each person’s individual goals. For example, a person with cancer may want to control their pain, improve their mental health, or alleviate symptoms, enhancing the overall quality of life.

Listed below are several areas in which an occupational therapist can provide valuable assistance.

Fall Prevention

An OT includes recommendations and even implements home modifications and assistive devices for those at risk of falling. A study published in the peer-reviewed journal The Oncologist found that modifications recommended and installed by an OT reduced falls by 21 percent overall and by 39 percent in those considered high risk for falls.

Assistance with Cognitive Symptoms

These include cognitive issues related to cancer, like confusion and problems with organization, attention, and memory. The OT shows patients a variety of systems for money management, shopping, meal planning, scheduling, medication management, and other activities, giving patients the confidence to stay independent. Take a look at a few ways OT patients can be motivated to further help them.

Fatigue

More than 91 percent of those with cancer report fatigue that impacts their ability to conduct regular activities. OTs can provide strategies for energy conservation, helping patients maintain a routine. Some methods involve home modifications and organization. These can be personalized to work for each patient.

Physical impairments

Includes pain, numbness, a decrease in the range of motion, and lymphedema, which are common among cancer patients. OTs can recommend stretches and exercises to increase mobility and reduce pain, providing special tools to improve independence and education. OTs will also recommend activity modifications when appropriate.

When to See an OT

According to an article in The Oncologist, the patients with cancer who are most likely to benefit from occupational therapy are:

  • Those who have fallen in the past six months
  • Patients experiencing difficulty completing activities of daily living for more than two weeks
  • Those whose activities are limited by pain or other symptoms
  • Those who have changes in focus, attention, and memory that make it difficult to participate in regular activities

Seeing an OT can have numerous advantages for a cancer patient, and the value these medical professionals provide should not go overlooked. At Ardor Health Solutions, we can help you find an occupational therapist that’s right for you.  Check out our health care job database if you are in the market for a new travel therapy position,or contact us if you are in need of an occupational therapist.

Ardor Health Named as a 2018 Best Workplace in Health Care and Biopharma!

Great Place to Work and Fortune have chosen Ardor Health Solutions as one of the 2018 Best Workplaces in Health Care and Bio Pharma! Ardor Health came in #23 with its ranking.

“For me, since day one, I have felt special to be here and like my talents are appreciated and utilized. I am being very fairly compensated and I feel like there is room for growth. I have a lot of freedom to self-start here, too, and with that chance, you see that management respects you. I am learning more about myself and the responsibility I have to do my part to assist the growth of the program here,” said one employee.

The ranking considered input from more than 95,000 employees in the Health Care and Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical sectors. Great Place to Work, a research and consulting firm, evaluated more than 50 elements of team members’ experience on the job. These included employee pride in the organization’s community impact, belief that their work makes a difference, and feeling their work has special meaning. Rankings are based on employees’ experiences, no matter who they are or what they do.

“The sincerity and genuine enthusiasm that the owners and staff have created in the workplace, whether you are a new employee or you have been here for years, you are made to feel welcomed and important. It is sincere,” noted another employee.

About the Best Workplaces in Health Care & Biopharma

Great Place to Work based its ranking on a data-driven methodology applied to anonymous Trust Index™ survey responses from more than 95,000 employees at Great Place to Work-Certified organizations in Financial Services & Insurance. To learn more about Great Place to Work Certification and recognition on Best Workplaces lists published with FORTUNE, visit Greatplacetowork.com.

4 Signs that Your Child May Need Occupational Therapy

If you’ve started to notice difficulties in your child’s school performance, you may think your child needs a visit with a psychologist or may not be using enough energy throughout the day. You may be worried and wonder what you can do to help. Even though you won’t be able to see your child work in the classroom, there are some signs you can identify outside of school that may indicate that he or she could benefit from occupational therapy.

Inability to focus

If your child is having trouble focusing on his homework, it may be a sign that he’s having difficulty concentrating in class. Most children won’t entirely focus on completing a homework assignment, but if your child gets distracted by noises or movement at home, he might also have difficulty paying attention at school and may not be getting the most out of his education. This is not necessarily a sign of attention-deficit disorder (ADD). While many may have problems focusing, children with ADD will frequently display:

  • Impulsivity – trouble censoring words and emotions and will interrupt people
  • Overactivity/Hyperactivity – issues staying still and wandering off when they’re expected to remain seated
  • Inattention – inability to focus even when trying to and may get tired from working so hard to pay attention
  • Distractibility – distraction stemming from the brain’s struggle to filter out extra information such as a sound or an itch that would cause the child to lose focus

Occupational therapy can help children stay focused by:

  • Allowing sensory breaks into the child’s day – allowing the child to walk around at regular intervals
  • Providing products to ease their stress, such as therapy fidget toys and chewable pencil tops and jewelry
  • Enabling special seating and testing in a separate room to help avoid sensory overload

Poor Motor Skills

Another sign that your child may need occupational therapy is if he struggles with necessary motor skills. A few examples of poor motor skills are:

  • Difficulty holding a pencil correctly
  • Difficulty erasing completely
  • Difficulty cutting, folding, or coloring

If your child seems like he’s struggling with these basic motor skills, you may need to consider occupational therapy. Occupational therapy can help your child improve motor skills by:

  • Implementing activities that will develop hand and finger muscles such as popping bubble wrap
  • Improving hand-eye coordination with customized exercises
  • Using games like Connect 4 to enhance fine motor skills

In addition to these activities and exercises, occupational therapists may use other techniques like letting your child set a dinner table by using two hands to carry and balance a tray.

Typing Difficulties

Typing difficulties entail more than slow typing speed compared to peers. From not being able to remember where the keys are, to not being able to move his fingers correctly, typing struggles come in many forms. These difficulties are all components of manual dexterity and visual memory which occupational therapy can improve.

Math Problems

Many children struggle with math at some point. When a child has difficulty learning math, the finger is usually pointed at the teacher or the actual lesson plan. Sometimes, a child could be struggling with math problems because he has a hard time lining up the numbers correctly. Without being able to line up the numbers, solving math problems and equations becomes an impossible feat for your child. This could stem from an issue with spatial organization which can also be improved with occupational therapy.

Occupational therapy plays an important role in improving a child’s ability to focus and learn in school. At Ardor Health Solutions, we use our staffing services to provide more opportunities for occupational therapists to apply their knowledge to help patients across the nation. Check out our blog if you’d like to learn more about occupational therapy and its uses!

Virtual Reality: A New Tool for Occupational Therapists?

Video games have been slowly implementing virtual reality (VR) to create a more intimate experience with gamers. The scope of virtual reality, however, isn’t limited to entertainment. Researchers and doctors are looking to VR for medical uses in psychiatry and occupational therapy. According to studies, virtual reality can help treat phobias or post-traumatic stress disorder. Could VR be a new tool for occupational therapists? Continue reading “Virtual Reality: A New Tool for Occupational Therapists?”

3 Ways You Can Motivate Your OT Clients

“OT” or “occupational therapy” is a highly rewarding healthcare field. In this field, you have the unique opportunity to help everyone from children with disabilities to aging individuals improve their current mental and/or physical condition. Your clients will see you as the guiding force on the path to recovery; it is your job to keep them positive and optimistic. An unmotivated client can be hard to work with as they are unlikely to commit to the outlined plan, further extending the therapy process. Keep your OT clients motivated by implementing these three helpful tips.

Establish a Client-Focused Plan

Your client wants to feel that he or she is a part of the process. The last thing you’d want to do is introduce a suggested plan of therapy without getting to know the individual first. Ailments may be similar but every client is unique. Use client-focused assessments such as the COPM that don’t only provide information about the client’s ability to perform tasks, but also what they would like to work on. Your client will be more likely to follow a plan that he or she played a role in developing.

Set Clear Goals With a Purpose

One of the most frustrating feelings a client can express is that they do not see how what they are doing is helping them. You may understand how each small tasks leads to an ultimate goal, but it may be difficult for them to grasp the concept. Instead of simply telling your client to walk 200 meters, say “Walk 200 meters so that it’ll be easier to for you move around the grocery store.” By giving the activity a clear purpose, your client will be more motivated to complete the activity to achieve that goal.

Be Their Biggest Fan

Yes, you are there to identify issues that need to be fixed, but you are there in a supportive role as well. Don’t simply move on to the next task when your client accomplishes one, celebrate the accomplishment with them. Every small step forward is a step in the right direction and you should make it known to your client that you value their determination. Your client will be grateful that you recognize his or her achievements and can become motivated to overcome the next hurdle.

A motivated client is a productive one. Motivate clients nationwide when you take on travel therapy. Ardor Health Solutions can help you find the travel therapy position that best fits your skills and experience. Give us a call at 855-GO-ARDOR or visit our job listings page to discover healthcare opportunities across the U.S.

Conditions that May Improve with Occupational Therapy

To the everyday person, it may be difficult to clearly understand what the duties of an occupational therapists are. Many people struggle to notice the difference between an occupational therapist and a physical therapist when it comes to their service areas. While they both provide hands-on services, physical therapists mainly work with individuals recovering from an injury while occupational therapists help patients improve their ability to perform daily tasks. There are particular instances where the patient may be recovering from an injury as well but they also work to improve patient’s emotions, behavior, and cognitive disabilities. Continue reading “Conditions that May Improve with Occupational Therapy”

3 Ways Occupational Therapists Help Treat Addiction

Addiction and substance abuse have always been a prominent issue in society. As time(ask) moves forward, more substances with addictive qualities are made to create a hole in an individual’s life. occupational therapists seek new ways to help clients cope with the addiction before it attains a crippling grasp and gradually ends the need that the client had for the substance entirely. Here are 3 ways that an occupational therapist can help treat addiction.

Continue reading “3 Ways Occupational Therapists Help Treat Addiction”

Ardor Health’s February Traveler of the Month!

We love taking the time to recognize Ardor Health’s inspirational and dedicated travelers, which is why we are proud to announce Ardor Health’s February Traveler of the Month, Michelle!

Her recruiter Amanda says, “she has worked for Ardor going on 4 years and is now in schools! She has 2 therapy dogs that she occasionally brings to school with her and has a TRUE passion for making a difference!”

Michelle is now in Yuma, AZ, and she is the happiest she has ever been! She is not afraid to take on a daunting task or caseload!

She is ALSO a part of our New Grad Mentorship Program as a Mentor!!!

She is committed to OT, always bettering herself and looking at ways to be ahead of the game!

1. What’s your favorite part about being a travel OT?

My favorite part about being a travel OT is somewhat hard to pinpoint because there are lots of fun things about it. I love exploring new cultures and meeting new people. Work wise you are always challenged and you pick up so many new learning experiences along the way as every site you work at has a different way of doing something. Adaptability is huge in travel OT and there is a pick up and go mentality that really works for me.

2. Is there a location that you haven’t visited yet that you hope to see one day?

Travel wise I always said that I wanted to visit all the states in the US. I still eventually want to do that and traveling therapy has really helped from cross-country drives to exploring the states around where I am working. There are definitely places I want to see but I am pretty flexible in where I am working as long as I can bring my two dogs along I am good to go :).

3. What do you like to do in your free time?

In my free time I love to explore new areas and my hobbies are really shaped by which state I am living in. When I am near the ocean or a body of water I am usually out there with my dogs after work walking along the shore. When I am landlocked there is usually a trail to walk or new friends to explore the town with. I am also a huge reader and have bought a travel hammock, so on weekends I will happily lay on my hammock reading.

4. You just came home from a long day of work, what meal would really hit the spot?

When I come home from a long day anything I don’t have to cook would hit the spot! I have traveled to some places that don’t have delivery and now that I have it back I remember how nice it is not to cook sometimes! I have been doing a lot of Thai food lately.

5. What’s your dream car and why?

I don’t have a dream car, as long as it doesn’t break down and the air conditioning/heater works I am happy. My air conditioner in my car broke down on my move to Arizona in July- not a good moment for us 🙂 ….  Now my dream vacation is pretty much anywhere with warm weather and a beach.

How to Transfer Your Occupational Therapist License to Another State

When you study to qualify for an occupational therapist license, every state will have unique requirements. These conditions are small enough that you won’t have to do anything drastically different to receive certification. At the same time, they do mean that every state has a transfer process. Depending on where you go, the time it takes to move will depend on your verifications, the score you received from The National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) exam, and whether you need to provide transcripts or continuing education units (CEU). Continue reading “How to Transfer Your Occupational Therapist License to Another State”

3 Ways To Communicate Better With Patients

The classroom environment is great for learning the techniques you use daily as part of your career, but often lack the personal touch that many patients need. If you are a new nurse, physical therapist, or other health care worker, you may be having some difficulty talking to patients. You explain to them what needs to be done, what you’re prescribing, or the long-term plan and the patient responds with an empty – or scared – stare. You’re not alone. Continue reading “3 Ways To Communicate Better With Patients”

How to Improve Communication with Coworkers

One of the most difficult parts of working as a traveling health practitioner is switching between coworkers so often. Add this to the fact that some hospitals have employees who have less than favorable opinions about traveling nurses or therapists, and you can find it difficult communicating with your coworkers. Not all hope is lost, you can get in touch and connect with the people you work with even if you’re going to be flying away soon. Better communication means a more efficient workplace environment, happier clients, and a happier you. 

Watch Body Language

Your body language often says more than words can. Even if you say everything with the right tone and language, people can pick up on signals that don’t match with what you have to say. This can lead to a loss of credibility. Pay attention to impulses that may lead you to slouch, avoiding eye contact, or sighing in the middle of speaking. In a hospital this is especially important, as you often have to make a difficult decision and make a case for your choice on the spot.

Avoid Hearing, Start Listening

While it can be easy to get in the habit of smiling and nodding whenever someone starts talking, other people will soon notice that you’re not really listening to them. Don’t feel too bad, most people usually don’t know they need to put in the time to develop active listening skills. Those who do though greatly benefit. When you make conscious, vocal answers or rephrase what a coworker is saying, you show that you are not only listening but making an honest attempt to see from their point of view. This helps you get on better terms with your coworkers as they notice that you care about what they have to say.

Balance Your Formalities

When people share the same space for a long time, it’s natural that you start feeling more comfortable around each other. Office gossip, talk about weekend plans, and throwing in a lame joke or two are common in the workplace. This does not mean you should completely gain confidence. If you have a dedicated office email or phone number, remember to stick with your practiced professional language. If you are in a meeting with your superiors, don’t test your luck by pushing formal boundaries. Going too far can make your coworkers view you as unprofessional.

Watch your Tone

In a face-to-face conversation, your tone should remain conversational. If you feel as if you are too overwhelmed by emotion or stress due to a difficult day at the clinic, there’s no harm in excusing yourself so you can unwind. When communicating with your coworkers through writing, be particularly careful about how your words may be interpreted. What can come off as a joke to one person may seem rude or angry to another. Adopt the “better safe than sorry” rule; write to your coworkers with language that makes your statement clear and carries a neutral tone.

While some people may find traveling health work to be depressing as they don’t usually stick around long enough to develop close relationships with their coworkers, traveling provides an opportunity to meet many kinds of people. Getting along with your coworkers means you learn new perspectives and techniques on how to carry out your work, and they can give you some great local tips on where to spend your time during rest days! If you’re looking for a new place to work in your traveling health career, check out our list of openings or call 855-GO-ARDOR.

Are You A Welcomed Guest On Your Travel Assignment?

With the holidays come the fun parties or gatherings, right?  Correct!  But along with the jubilations there are social challenges.

Do you have that one pesky guest you can’t stand but must invite for the holidays?  How about that nosy family guest who keeps asking when the baby is coming…and here you are still paying off your school loans?

Or perhaps are you the guest, who feels awkward or doesn’t quite know how to blend in?  Better yet, are you the guest that everyone loves to invite?

Well in travel or healthcare contract staffing, this is a year-round or 3-month challenge for travelers.

As a contract worker, you will often face the reality of either being incompatible or getting along with your clinical peers or supervisors.  There are countless contract placements that are won or lost by the battle of personalities.  The truth is, others view travelers as highly paid but necessary guests.

Whether you are a savvy veteran or a new traveler…the question is how do you become a welcomed guest?  It’s simple and back to basics.  First, realize you are a guest. Accept this reality and be mindful of your strategies for blending in.  The most important piece is, exercise the art of winning or influencing those around you.

Influencing or winning people is a critical people skill that have made healthcare travelers a success along with having a higher rate of requested returns for contract work.

So here are the top 6 quick ways to connect and be a welcomed healthcare traveler:

1.  Smile

A smile is free but impactful! It evokes instant joy and will move mountains.  Smiling is that positive vibe…a proven human connector.  There are countless of scientific data proving how smiling is influential.

So be mindful and smile more in everything that you do.  It connects you from a happy place.

2. Be genuinely interested in others

Deep connections are possible even in a short span of time…by showing genuine interest in others.  The only way to make quality connections or even lasting friendships is to be genuinely interested in what matters to others.

Sincere small talks work…ask about their family, their hobby, etc.

3. Be a good listener and inspire others to talk about themselves

 To be a good conversationalist one must be a good listener.  You must care about what others say or you must show honest interest about what they are sharing.

People don’t want an entertaining conversationalist, most of the time people just want someone who will listen to them.

So, listen more…talk less.

4. Remember a person’s name and say it often

A person’s name is the sweetest and most important sound in any language.  An average person is more interested and responsive when their name is included in a conversation.

People love their name so much that you’ve seen donations made just to see names on a donor’s plate, a building, a street sign, a plaque on a bench, a dedicated tree, etc.

Go ahead and include as much as you can a person’s name in a conversation, a greeting, etc (i.e.  “Good morning Paola”)

5. Talk in terms of the other person’s interests

You will connect quicker through a person’s heart…so talk about the things that he or she treasures most.

If we talk to people about what they are interested in, they will feel valued and value us in return.

6. Make the other person feel important – and do it sincerely

An old adage but a powerful one: treat others as how you would like to be treated.  We love to feel valued and so does everyone else.  People will connect deeper and talk more to you if you allow them to talk about themselves.

If you can make people feel important in a sincere and appreciative manner, then you will win all the friends you could ever dream of.

The above are easy but practical ways to connect with people or be a welcomed guest.  Apply these techniques as a part of your everyday living or as you embark on your first or hundredth travel career.

Winning people is an art.   It is a people skill that could only enhance your travel career.

Bon Voyage…enjoy your next healthcare travel adventure and cheers to becoming a VIP Guest!

Quick Start Guide To New Grad Mentorship

Congratulations! You’ve graduated! Now it’s time to grab that first big job out of college. We know that it can be a pretty scary experience when it comes to getting that first travel job, but that’s why we’re here to help! Traveling the country is a quick, easy, and efficient way to develop your skills as a new grad. Ardor Health has developed a Mentorship Program to aid you on your journey, making sure a seasoned therapist is always there to give you advice and help whenever you need it! Check it out below!

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WHY WOULD YOU START YOUR CAREER WITHOUT A MENTOR?

A big asset to our unique travel therapy program for new graduates is the mentorship provided by Ardor’s Mentors. These therapists are highly qualified to provide support to new grads like yourself as they have walked in your footsteps. Each of our Ardor Health Mentors is eager to provide comprehensive support including travel support, so you never feel alone on the go.

Free CEU’s

The healthcare field never stops evolving and neither should your education. Ardor Health offers over 1,000 courses for you to continue your therapy education throughout your career with us. New courses are added each day and are available to you 24/7. Absolutely free.

Tuition Reimbursement

Free private housing not enough to get you moving? How about tax-free tuition reimbursement? At Ardor Health we are invested in your continued education, and can help offset your education costs. By completing a few requirements through your assignments, you can receive a check for $2,500 just for your tuition costs! Ask your recruiter for the nitty-gritty.

Choosing A Travel Company With Competitive Health Benefits

Choosing a healthcare staffing company to travel with can be a daunting task. There are several questions that you might ask yourself before making your choice. Who has the most qualified jobs? What type of support will I receive on assignment? Who has the most competitive pay package? All of these questions are great! But one factor you might overlook from time to time is the affordability of the health insurance with the company you plan to travel with. You want the comfort and security of a strong plan, but you don’t want your health insurance to take a toll on your bottom line.

The Changing Landscape

The Wall Street Journal says several states throughout the country will see significant premium increases for the next year. For example, Tennessee residents are receiving an increase of 62% on the state run health insurance plans. Other states like Kentucky are receiving an increase of 23%. The Department of Health and Human Services reported that the annual increase across the country will be 25%. Some insurers such as Aetna and United Healthcare are pulling out of the state run programs entirely.

But travelers who choose Ardor Health have nothing to fear; that’s because Ardor Health offers plans for travelers that start as low $33.00 per week!

“In July we made a decision to switch insurance companies from United Healthcare to Blue Cross Blue Shield. Only a few insurance companies are able to provide our Travelers coverage in most of the 50 states that we do business,” said Michael Lamia, Co-Founder and CEO of Ardor Health Solutions, ” Our employees are paid weekly, and their premiums are deducted weekly. The state run exchanges cannot come close to competing with our health insurance program.”

Interested in learning more about Ardor Health Solutions’ comprehensive benefits? Click here!

Ardor Health Named As Best Workplace For Women

Ardor Health Solutions has been named one of the best places for women to work in the country for the second year in a row! Out of the hundreds of companies evaluated, Ardor ranked #61, climbing 18 spots from last year’s ranking! The ratings are based on employee’s assessments of communications with management, options for development and training, and support for work/life balance, among other factors. The ranking also takes into account how well-represented women are within the workforce overall and in management and executive positions.

“Here at Ardor Health Solutions, we take pride in helping women to achieve both a professional and fulfilling career,” said Patty Lamia, President and Co-Founder of Ardor Health Solutions, “Ardor Health’s success can always be traced back to the time, contribution, and dedication that our employees bring everyday!”

So How Did Ardor Health Rank?

At Ardor Health, 81% of employees are women, who also make up 55% of executive positions. Most employees say they love the atmosphere of the office, thanks to thoughtful programs like Ardor All-Stars that recognizes
and rewards exemplary employees each month. Employees also enjoy flexible scheduling opportunities and free snacks and breakfasts in the office. In addition, Ardor Health rewards their employees with trips to places like Epcot and on cruises when they meet quarterly goals.

How Are Companies Chosen?

The 100 Best Workplaces for Women rankings are based upon feedback from more than 137,762 women at Great Place to Work–Certified companies. Women completed our anonymous Trust Index© survey, answering questions about how frequently they experience the behaviors that create a great workplace, including, for example, their assessment of how fairly they’re treated regardless of gender, the quality and authenticity of communications with managers, and equitable pay and promotion practices. Women’s anonymous responses resulted in a total score for each company, which was compared to the benchmark for organizations of that size, and ranked accordingly.

Results from the survey are highly reliable, having a 95% confidence level and a margin of error of 6% or less. Winning a spot on this list indicates the company has distinguished itself from peers by being a great place to work for women, and has a workplace where women have high representation in the total employee population and in management positions. The 100 companies with the highest employee ratings and female representation were selected for the list.

You can read the entire review at Great Places To Work.

The Ardor Health Solutions Family is always looking to growing!
If you’re interested in joining the Ardor Team, simply check out our current job postings.

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10 Great Reasons Why You Should Choose A Career In Schools

The amazing folks over at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA.org) have put together a fantastic list on why now is the time to choose a career in schools. Whether you’re a Speech Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist, School Nurse, School Psychologist or Special Education Teacher, there are limitless opportunities for you in a school setting. See the list below!

10. Wide Variety of Opportunities

  • Work with students with diverse backgrounds in preschool, elementary and middle/high school settings
  • Choose where you want to live, whether it be in an urban, rural or suburban area
  • Gain the opportunity to help students with differing disorders in a variety of different ways. (Individual basis, small groups or in classrooms

9. High Demand for SLPs in Schools

  • Become a part of one of the fastest growing settings

8. Job Security and Excellent Benefits

  • Take advantage of competitive health, leave and retirement programs
  • Enjoy comprehensive benefits packages

7. Favorable Schedules

  • Enjoy family friendly work schedules
  • Receive paid holidays, breaks and summer vacations
  • Explore opportunities for part-time work and job sharing

6. Competitive Salaries

  • Reap rewards for advanced credits, degrees or the ASHA Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC)
  • Benefit from salary supplement, sign-on bonus, tuition reimbursement, loan forgiveness and relocation expenses
  • Gain extra income for summer or after-school programs

5. Work As A Professional Team Member

  • Collaborate with other like-minded professionals, including: Speech Language Pathologists, teachers, school nurses, occupational therapists & physical therapists, school psychologists and special education teachers

4. Ongoing Professional Development

  • Advance your professional knowledge with Free CEUs
  • Learn about school-related topics
  • Share your expertise with others

3. Variety of Career Options

  • Develop your specialization in learn new skills
  • Participate in research opportunities

2. Opportunity for Creativity

  • Develop new approaches, techniques and materials
  • Create unique programs to meet student needs
  • Experience new models of service delivery and other new school initiatives

1. A Life-Long Career

  • Unlock a student’s potential!
  • Contribute to a student’s personal, academic social and vocational growth
  • Develop long-term relationships with students, families and colleagues

Want to learn more about school opportunities? Click here!

Preparing For The New School Year As A Traveling Therapist

School may be out for the summer, but it’s never too early to start planning your next school travel assignment for the 2016-2017 School Year! When you travel with Ardor Health, life is made a lot easier, that’s why we’ve compiled a list of important tips to get you ready for your next travel assignment!

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Ardor Health has a Licensure Department to ensure that our candidates are completing the right applications and following the correct process. Our Department provides guidance to the therapists for all license applications, credentials, teaching certifications, and trainings required for State Boards and Department of Education Certifications. Let us worry about

Important Tips

  • Once you decide where you’re going to travel, it’s important to contact the appropriate state board that governs your practice.
  • Familiarize yourself with all the state mandates for licensure – this includes tests of laws and rules, fingerprinting, continuing education requirements and education verification.
  • Make sure you understand how long the licensure process is. The state board website may not be accurate, so you may need to give them a call!
  • Licensure may take 4-10 weeks to process. Some states will also require additional teaching certifications. Some states may not let you apply for the license and teaching certification simultaneously. You will have to be approved for the license in order to apply for the teacher certification.
  • Following up on your licensure is key! Follow up constantly until you’re granted the license!
  • Some schools may allow you to start your assignment with the teaching certification process pending, as long you have the license and cleared fingerprints.

There’s plenty to do before starting your next assignment!

No matter the specialty, there are plenty of states that would be amazing travel locations. So where would you like to travel next? These 17 states are the top places to travel for the 2016-2017 school year!

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Of course, Ardor Health Solutions has positions in all 50 states, these are just a few states that we think you may want to consider traveling to this year. Still interested in traveling to another state? No problem! We’ve got a job for you!

The School Traveler Road Map:

Are you thinking about starting a new contract in a school position?

Give yourself a head start by preparing for the new school year!

The 11 Most Sought After Cities For Occupational Therapists

A new report from InsiderMonkey.com has shined some light on some of the highest demand cities for occupational therapists. These 11 cities offer some of the best locations to travel to for temporary assignments and offer some of the most competitive salaries in the country!

Occupational Therapy is absolutely essential to a patient’s rehabilitation. Occupational therapists work on identifying and eliminating environmental barriers to independence and participation in daily activities. OTs also help clients to recover and maintain important skills that are used in the work space.

According to InsiderMonkey.com, they determined the cities with the highest demand for occupational therapists, by discovering which cities paid the highest salaries to occupational therapists as higher salaries are a direct result of high demand. In addition, the folks over at InsiderMonkey.com also linked the amount of Occupational Therapists living in a city to high demand. Then then took the average of both the criteria mentioned in order to determine the rankings.

All data is courtesy of InsiderMonkey.com

11. Tampa – St. Petersburg – Clearwater,

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org

Average annual salary in the city: $88,980
Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 50

Total number of jobs in the city: 960

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 23

Overall score: 13.5

10. Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $87,980

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 67

Total number of jobs in the city: 1,560

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 9

Overall score: 15.5

9. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $88,440

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 55

Total number of jobs in the city: 1,530

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 11

Overall score: 17

7. San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $100,510

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 11

Total number of jobs in the city: 500

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 49

Overall score: 20

7. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $88,210

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 57

Total number of jobs in the city: 2,360

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 3

Overall score: 20

6. Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach, FL

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $98,170

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 14

Total number of jobs in the city: 570

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 44

Overall score: 21

5. Edison-New Brunswick, NJ

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $93,050

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 34

Total number of jobs in the city: 1,260

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 15

Overall score: 25.5

4. San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, CA

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $94,430

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 26

Total number of jobs in the city: 1,050

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 22

Overall score: 26

3. Las Vegas-Paradise, NV

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $114,320

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 1

Total number of jobs in the city: 550

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 45

Overall score: 27

2. Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine, CA

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $93,650

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 29

Total number of jobs in the city: 1,310

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 14

Overall score: 28.5

1. Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia.org
Average annual salary in the city: $94,880

Ranking according to average annual salary in the city: 24

Total number of jobs in the city: 2,010

Ranking according to total number of jobs in the city: 5

Overall score: 35.5

Travel Therapy Is Always Better Together

You probably know that travel therapy is one of the best options for therapist’s career, especially if you’re a new grad. Traveling allows you to see the country while getting paid to help others and grants you almost limitless opportunities! But some people think that travel therapy means they have to be away from friends or their significant other. But that’s not really the case anymore. Ardor Health makes traveling with a friend or partner easy, whether you’re a Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Speech Language Pathologist, or any other Allied Health professional.

Traveling With Your Significant Other

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Many Travelers often say they are worried how traveling might affect their relationships. On one hand they would love to see the country and help others in different states. But on the other hand, they don’t want to be apart from their significant other for a long period of time. But many travel therapists enjoy the comfort of having the best of both worlds!

The picture on the right is a photo of Gabe and Jessica Renzi. They are two physical therapists that have been traveling together for several years! To date, they have worked at 13 different assignments in 5 states. They are a great example of how traveling with your significant other can open up your career and your life to new and exciting possibilities.

You can check out their website here.

Of course, it’s great if your partner is in the same healthcare field as you, but that doesn’t mean you can’t travel together if you’re in different fields. If your partner isn’t in the same field, they could travel with you and work remotely if their job allows it. Telecommuting is becoming more and more popular among employers. Your partner could also take a few months off and take online classes while they travel with you.
 

Other Traveling With Your BFF

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Traveling with a friend is also a great option, especially for new grads. Ardor Health would work to find both of you a position in a new city, allowing you both to ease into the change in location and atmosphere. Starting off your career with a friend by your side is one of the best ways to get started in travel therapy! Having someone to share new experiences with is priceless when traveling.

But at the same time, you can expect to make many new friends along the way, possibly wanting to start new travel contracts with them in the future as well.

That’s the advantage of traveling with Ardor Health. Your personal recruiter will do their best to find a place to lives for both of you and your partner/friend that accommodates the both of you. It may cost a bit more to take someone with you, but Ardor Health’s compensation plans will easily lift any financial burden that you may have.

Are You Ready To Travel With Someone Else?

Call us at: 855-GO-ARDOR

Or Email us at: Info@ArdorHealth.com

Visit Us: www.ArdorHealth.com