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Travel healthcare: More than just a business transaction; no ‘50-mile’ rule — HC Staffing Summit concludes

November 08 2018

When it comes to the communication between recruiters and travel healthcare workers, a great deal of trust is required, and you can forget the “50-mile” rule, according to a panel discussion at the Healthcare Staffing Summit, which wrapped up yesterday in Denver.

“You have to trust your recruiter, they have to trust you,” said Kim Sees, a registered nurse.

Sees was a panelist on a Healthcare Staffing Summit panel Wednesday titled “Speaking the Traveler Language – Fluently.” It was led by Subadhra Sriram, editor and publisher, media products, at Staffing Industry Analysts.

That trust is key to communicating with healthcare travelers, according to the four panelists. Communication should also include transparency.

Recruiters should not be thought of in the same light as a used car salesperson, said panelist Brandon Stewart, senior healthcare recruiter/team lead, Medical Staffing Solutions.

“You don’t want that; you want to build a relationship,” Stewart said. “It’s more than just a business transaction, it’s more than just a number.”

Keeping in contact is also a key to trust, said Jeff West, regional branch manager, nursing division, Aureus Medical.

West also said he is a fan of making sure travelers get their calls returned on the same day.

“That can be a late night, but that’s how you build trust.”

Healthcare traveler Erran Gipson, an interventional radiology technologist, said recruiters also need to know what they are talking about when speaking with workers. For example, if a recruiter refers to him as a “technician” instead of a “technologist,” that can raise a red flag.

“We want to have that language where you understand what we do,” Gipson said.

And the “50-mile” rule? It’s false, the panelists said.

The 50-mile rule has to do with a travel healthcare workers tax situation if they travel more than 50 miles from their home. While it’s false, panelists said it’s misinformation that has been thrown out there by some and is an example of bad communication.

What about the impact of online staffing on the recruiter-traveler relationship?

Panelists said the human factor will always be critical. Humans can adapt more easily to changing situations than an app, for example, if difficulties arise. Apps may also not be able to go the extra mile the same as a human recruiter can.

“I think that human connection means a lot to me,” Gipson said. However, he added that he would still try online staffing.

The next Healthcare Staffing Summit will take place Nov. 6 to 8, 2019, in Las Vegas.

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