Choosing to pursue a career as a travel nurse means that you have to take care of some issues on your own, rather than allowing an employer to manage things like taxes and insurance on your behalf. When it comes to securing and maintaining a reasonable amount of health coverage, there are several options you can consider. Depending on where you choose to work and what type of agency helps you find the right assignments, the task may be simpler than you think.

Insurance Through An Agency:

As every travel nurse knows, there are employment agencies that specialize in locating assignments for qualified traveling nurses. Some agencies will provide access to some of the benefits offered by employers. For example, the agency may actually collect the pay from your current assignment, withhold the proper amount of taxes and then remit the remainder of your wages to the bank account you specify. Along with collecting and reporting taxes on your behalf, some agencies also allow nurses who work a minimum number of hours per year to participate in a group health policy.

Being part of a group plan is advantageous for several reasons. The premiums are usually more affordable than the costs of purchasing individual health insurance. In addition, you may be able to enjoy lower deductibles through the group plan. Since the insurance is through the agency, you never have to worry about changing plans as you move from one assignment to the next. Best of all, the agency can withhold the amount of the premium from your pay and forward to the insurance provider on your behalf. This means you are never late paying the premium.

Insurance Through a Professional Association: 

It is not unusual for a travel nurse to be a member of at least one professional association. You may find that the association offers access to health insurance as one of the benefits. Depending on the type and quality of that health coverage, you may find that obtaining insurance through the association is a good idea. Typically, your membership will entitle you to discounted rates for as long as you maintain your membership in the association. An arrangement of this type can be helpful, especially if you work with more than one employment agency and want to remain as independent as possible.

Find Your Own Individual Health Insurance Plan: 

There is always the option of identifying and considering different types of individual plans that are not connected with an agency or an association. Many well known providers now offer individual policies that include benefits similar to those offered in group plans. While this approach may be a little more expensive, you can often find a plan that offers the right combination of benefits with a premium you can afford. If you do accept assignments throughout the country, make sure the health insurance you secure will offer similar benefits no matter where you happen to live currently. This will minimize the chances of having to pay out of network costs when you do need some type of health care.

While it may take some time to find the right approach to securing health coverage, every travel nurse knows that this type of insurance is a necessity rather than a luxury. With the cost of health care continuing to increase, all it takes is one serious illness to deplete savings and create financial hardship that can takes years to overcome. Identify the options available for a reasonable level of health insurance through a reliable company and compare those options carefully. Doing so will mean you are always protected, no matter where you happen to be working.