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Travel Nursing Series: Travel Nursing in Greece

Why do people travel? Simple wanderings may prompt people to see new places and have new experiences, or the need to get away from everyday stresses or pressures at home or at work. Some may wish to take a religious journey to a sacred site or may be tempted by a new profession. Whatever the reason, traveling allows you to make a connection in another country, meet different people and experience different cultures.

One of the easiest careers to “take on the road” is the health care professional. Doctors and nurses are in demand in every country in the world and it is easy to find work abroad. Nursing skills are global and skills for US nurses are among the most advanced. Obtaining a degree to work abroad in a foreign country is relatively easy, although a bit tedious. Usually, the employment agency can help guide the American nurse through this process. Salary and benefits are in line with Standard Travel Nursing Guidelines. Subsidized housing, signing bonuses, paid vacation, and health insurance are offered, depending on the particular job. You will need to pack your own nursing uniform and nursing shoes as these items are not provided by your employer.

There is a great demand for nurses in Greece. To find and apply for a job as a nurse in Greece, it is best to hire a professional agency to help with the procedure. Travel nurse agencies help guide nurses to find the perfect job in Greece. International job applications may be overwhelmed with the amount of paperwork required but a good agency will help in obtaining the necessary visas and certificates. Agencies are the mediator between the employer and the nurse, negotiating a contract that benefits both parties. They will provide job details such as hours of operation, overtime regulations, and nursing uniform requirements. Many international hospitals have adopted the American trend of wearing scrubs instead of the traditional nursing uniform. Shopping for medical uniforms in Greece can be challenging, but there are websites on the internet that offer a large selection of scrubs at discount prices to meet your uniform needs.

The Greek National Health System provides a basic medical service to Greek citizens and has a reciprocal agreement with the British National Health Service. There are many public and private hospitals in Greece, all with different standards. Some private hospitals have affiliations with US facilities. These hospitals are an excellent resource for American nurses who are looking for jobs abroad in Greece. Physicians working in these private hospitals have been trained in the United States or at another international educational institution. In public medical clinics, especially on the Greek islands, very little English is often spoken. Many visitors to Greece and Greek nationals move from island care units to hospitals in Athens Hospitals for the most modern and professional care.

Medical facilities in Greece range from barely adequate to very good. Public hospitals are severely understaffed, particularly during the night shift in non-emergency wards. Nursing jobs in these facilities is a very difficult job. Standards for nursing and aftercare, particularly in the public health sector, lag behind what is normally accepted in the United States. In order to ensure proper care, those patients who can afford it assign private nurses to take care of them during their stay in the hospital. For those with good insurance coverage, private hospitals are available with modern facilities and excellent care. Travel nurses generally purchase jobs either in a private hospital or as a private nurse in a public hospital. Greek knowledge, of course, is useful. Doctors and facilities are generally good on the mainland, but may be limited on the islands. It is possible to deal with English, but translating patients will take time. In public medical clinics, especially on the Greek islands, very little English is often spoken.

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