What is a Travel Correctional Nurse?

Are you a current travel nurse or looking to travel soon? Consider a new path by jumping into correctional travel nursing! The thought might be intimidating, but some of our most successful traveler experiences have come from working as a travel correctional nurse. Read on to learn more about what correctional travel nursing is and entails.

What does a Corrections Nurse do?

Travel nurses working in corrections will typically see a wide range of illnesses and injuries in inpatient and outpatient settings. While care may vary by facility, you can work closely with your recruiter to determine which corrections facility fits the environment you’re looking for.

As a corrections travel nurse, you may see psychiatric disorders, substance abuse, diabetic patients, chronic illnesses, some traumatic injuries and infectious diseases. Your tasks and duties will often be the same as those in a more traditional hospital setting. You may assist with monitoring medical supplies, intake of patients, assessing and diagnosing, administering medications, and monitoring patient progress. You will also do charting – typically paper charting – which admittedly can take some time to get used to if you’re accustomed to electronic charting, as most nurses are.

“The unique aspect of being a travel nurse is that this profession can be so diverse. Working in corrections adds an entirely new dimension to your daily life.”

–Travel Nurse Mary C.


What are the benefits of working as a Corrections Travel Nurse?

As a travel nurse working for the corrections system, you’ll have the opportunity to make a difference and expand your resume experience. You will quickly learn to adapt and navigate situations that you might not encounter in a hospital setting.

Working as a correctional travel nurse you can really make a difference in the lives of these individuals. Providing care for an underserved population can be incredibly rewarding and build personal growth and empathy in a way you might have never imagined.

Oftentimes, our own travel nurses take on travel contracts at correctional facilities and have quickly found it to become their travel preference. Extensions are common at correctional facilities and are often requested early by travelers who take the chance on correctional nursing.

You can read a first-hand correctional nursing experience from our September 2023 Traveler of the Month winner, Ashley Duhon!

How can I have a successful assignment in Correctional Travel Nursing?

Correctional nurses need to be good at establishing boundaries and knowing how compassion for patients can be perceived. Due to this, setting boundaries can cause internal conflict at times. While you can still express empathy as you do in any patient care environment, don’t put yourself in a situation where your kindness is mistaken for weakness. Working corrections, there is the potential for manipulation in this environment at times, and we want to make you aware of and prepared for that.

At the same time, as a corrections nurse, it is important not to take anything personally and let comments and remarks slide off your back. Remember, your recruiter and team here at Axis are available to listen – at any time – if you need to work through any frustrating situations.

It’s important to realize that self-care and mental health is of the utmost importance when working in settings such as corrections. For this reason, you’ll want to continuously check within yourself and communicate with your recruiter and nurse support staff if you begin to experience symptoms. Find hobbies or attend events that are rejuvenating in your free time. This can be refreshing on your days off as a correctional travel nurse.

What are the safety protocols and procedures working in Correctional Nursing?

There are a lot of misconceptions that working at a correctional facility might be dangerous or a place where you don’t feel safe, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Because there are so many routines and safety policies at corrections facilities, you will quickly realize that it is a much safer environment than most healthcare facilities.

Safety protocols and procedures are critical in the correctional facility environment to ensure the well-being of the nursing staff, internal staff and the inmates. From security awareness to emergency response techniques, you will feel at ease during each shift that you work. It is a top priority for correctional facilities to maintain proper training and ongoing education to stay up to date with safety protocols and procedures specific to their work environment.














Let’s start your journey as a travel nurse with Axis today! 

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Mackenzie Bolte
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