Labor and delivery nurse Judy Vernon, RN, has been in nursing for more than 20 years, and has been a nurse traveler with Onward Healthcare for a good portion of her career. Currently she’s assigned to the Flagstaff Medical Center in Flagstaff, Ariz., where she continues to learn new things, make new friends and enjoy helping the mothers and newborns in her care.
“When I was pregnant with my second son, I had a lot of complications and was hospitalized a lot,” she said. “I got to know the nurses who cared for me. I admired them and wanted to do what they did. So, when I became a nurse I chose to work in obstetrics. No matter how many births I’ve seen, it’s still a thrill to see a child born.”
When her hometown hospital in Wichita, Kan., closed, Vernon decided it was time to expand her horizons.
“I knew I didn’t want to work at another local hospital,” she said. “I was interested in travel nursing and when I learned more about it I decided to travel. I enjoy opportunities to be assigned to a variety of hospitals and look forward to the challenges of learning how things are done in different towns, cities and states.”
Vernon has completed assignments in a variety of places, and among those she’s liked best is Sitka, Alaska. “I’d love to go back to Sitka because it’s beautiful, surrounded by mountains on three sides and the ocean on the fourth side. Sitka also has good salmon fishing which I enjoy,” she said. “I like to go places where there’s hiking trails and cities where I can learn something new.” She enjoyed learning more about America’s history by visiting the Smithsonian museums in Washington, D.C., for instance.
Making friends along the way
Vernon’s favorite travel experiences include making new friends among patients and co-workers. “In Montana, I took care of a woman who was