p th! & roes ELOINES Caring For Those Who Served Their Country (NAPSA)—Aprogram designed to provide the best possible care for veterans also offers rewarding job alternatives for experienced nurses. The VA Travel Nurse Corps Program is a VA-operated internal pool of registered nurses who are available for temporary shortterm assignments at VA centers throughout the country. While taking part in the program, VA Travel Nurses are compensated for their time and travel and receive per diem allowances that include lodging, meals and incidentals plus the opportunity to see the country. RNs are compensated for hours worked but do not earn sick or vacation time or retirement programs. “The program offers nurses an opportunity to maintain high standards of patient care, helps decrease turnover of newly recruited nurses and offers alternatives for experienced nurses considering leaving the VA system,” says Program Director Jacqueline Jackson. It is hoped that the program will reduce the use of outside supplemental staffing, improve re- cruitment of new nurses into the VA system and deliver VA health care in rural or underserved areas. The program also hopes to establish a potential pool of registered nurses for national emergency preparednessefforts. RNsare selected from the VA and the private sector. Nurses new to the VA receive training on the special needs of veterans, the system’s procedures and policies, as well as medication administration and the VA’s computer system. The VA Travel Nurse Corps helps maintain the high standards of patient care and quality that vet- erans deserve. Nursing can be both challenging and rewarding wherever you work but the VA program offers special rewards. “As I start the IV on an 85year-old hero, his eyes grow soft as he mentions his tour of service in India and Burma,” said RN Brenda Joyce Gupton. “This veteran carried our colors to another continent for freedom’s sake. It was myprivilege to be his nurse.” The program was launched as a joint effort between the VA’s Integrated Service Networks, the VA’s Management Support Office and the VA Office of Nursing Services. “We are committed to making this program a win-win for all involved and to keep VA on the cutting edge of providing the best care possible to our nation’s veter- ans,” said Jackson. For more information, visit www.travelnurse.va.gov or call (866) 664-1030.