How did your nursing journey begin?
2011. I was a 30 year old Nursing school graduate with a 3 and 5 year old at home.
I started in a very strange, but well-paying Lyme disease infusion clinic. I was the only RN on staff and I literally was mixing bags of antibiotics and antioxidants per orders. All of our patients had central lines. Very strange, but still good experience.
What do you like most about being a nurse?
I love the scientific part of it, honestly. The fact that we apply interventions based on theory or proven practice and then evaluate and assess until we solve real problems. The ability to solve problems, whether it’s a fever or an education deficit really makes me tick.
How did you get into your job now at travelers?
I saw a posting on Nurses KC!! I dm’d my, now, boss about it and decided to apply to a job I knew next to nothing about.
What is your typical day like working for travelers?
I start sometime between 7:00am and 8:30am by logging on, sometimes in my pj’s (if I’m at home).
3 days a week I put on real pants and go to the office of the Concentra I office out of a few days a week.
My day is divided between reviewing medical notes, coordinating treatments with providers and specialists, authorizing treatment requests based on evidence and medical judgement, educating and assessing injured workers and their employment situations, and collaborating with adjusters to explain the direction a diagnosis is going to take them.
It’s mentally stimulating and like nothing I’ve ever done before. So much autonomy and strategy and prioritization!
How do you feel your work life balance is in this role?
Superb! Honestly, we’ve had some very demanding situations with my kids these last two years and I had amazing flexibility to run people to therapy or appointments or whatever. My employer very truly encourages family first. And my productivity has never suffered one bit. It’s a different world.
What is your advice to other nurses that want to get out of bedside nursing and into a role similar to yours?
So, it’s probably not for everyone—medical case management, that is. You have to really be comfortable with autonomy and prioritization, while also getting interrupted all the time. But if your brain loves finding solutions and detail-oriented strategizing, you may be needing to ask the universe to bring you a gig like mine.
Bedside nursing is only one way to do Nursing. Of course I’m grateful for the 10 years I spent at the bedside, but it’s okay to think outside the box when it comes to our profession.
I worry about burnout and I think there’s likely a great reckoning that’s coming from every hospital board that I hope this will usher back the passion and art form of Nursing.
Thank you to Jess for sharing your story! If you are a nurse or know a nurse that would like to share your story contact me on the contact page!
Thank you for sharing your nursing journey! if you know a nurse that we could feature please reach out on my contact page or message via Facebook/instagram!