COVID Updates for Travel Nurses: January 5, 2022
Since our last update, Omicron has taken over the country, with nearly 130,000 new cases being detected each day. The Washington Post reported that more than 103,000 Americans are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, a number not seen since last summer’s Delta wave.
Omicron has been a source of confusion because while cases and hospitalizations have increased (about 27% in the past week alone, according to the Washington Post), new deaths have actually decreased.
There’s still much to be seen about the impact of Omicron and how it will affect us all, but in the meantime, hospitals can’t wait: If you’re a travel nurse looking to pick up some work, you can take your pick of travel nursing jobs around the country, so read on for more info and job postings.
What’s happening with COVID-19 right now
According to the CDC’s weekly data, COVID cases have more than doubled in the past week alone. Here’s what’s going on:
- January 2022 had the highest COVID case count of the entire pandemic so far
- Cases are up nearly 1.5% from the previous week tracked
- To date, the U.S. has seen a total of 53,795,407 cases of COVID
- The death toll from COVID has hit 820,355
- The U.S. is currently averaging about 122,297 COVID cases per day
- CDC data saw a death rate increase of about 8% (CDC data is about a week behind projected figures, which the Washington Post uses)
- Omicron is responsible for around 95% of COVID cases in the U.S.
What’s happening in hospitals right now
Hospitalizations have been steadily on the rise since Omicron burst onto the scene. They’ve gone up more than 4% from last week alone, according to the CDC.
The New York Times reports this morning that doctors have found that two specific monoclonal antibody treatments work best for hospitalized patients infected with Delta, while a third (and very hard-to-find) antibody treatment works best for Omicron.
Unfortunately tests aren’t specific enough to tell which variant is present, so healthcare providers are struggling to determine which treatment is best for each patient. Some states and communities have higher numbers of specific variants, so as of now, doctors are trying to match what’s present in the community to help determine treatment options.
The New York Times COVID map and tracker reports that urban Northeastern areas of the country are seeing an “explosive” number of cases, with areas like Washington, D.C. and New York City increasing 600-800 percent. Florida, Ohio, big cities, and areas near ski resorts are all seeing major increases as well.
Hospitalization rates are also increasing, but thankfully not as fast as cases overall. Many hospitals are still struggling to gather up enough staff, which means that travel nursing positions are plentiful. From MICU/SICU to emergency room to Med/Surg, here are some of the current travel nursing positions available with weekly rates listed.
Current COVID-19 travel nursing jobs for January 5, 2022
- Cardiac ICU: $8.1K/week
- ER: $7.8K/week
- PICU: $7.5K/week
- Connecticut, ICU: $7.1K/week
- Ohio, MICU/SICU, StepDown, L&D, ER: $8K/week
- Idaho, MICU/SICU: $8K/week
- Cardiac Cath Lab: $7.1K/week
- CCU, ER: $6.8K/week
- ER: $7K/week
- MICU/SICU: $7.2K/week
- Massachusetts, Neuro, MICU/SICU: $6.7K/week
- Michigan, Stepdown-General, MICU/SICU: $7K/week
- Missouri, OR: $7.1K/week
- New Jersey
- ER: $7.1K/week
- Telemetry, ER, MICU/SICU: $7.2K/week
- New York
- L&D: $7.4K/week
- Med/Surg: $7.1K/week
- North Dakota, Telemetry: $6.8/week
- Oregon, ICU, L&D: $6.7K/week
- Pennsylvania, Med/Surg, Telemetry, Stepdown, ER MICU/SICU: $7.1-7.3K/week
- Wisconsin, PICU: $7.2K/week
What’s happening with the vaccine
Since our last update, there have been significant updates concerning COVID-19 vaccines. As we know, despite high levels of vaccination in the U.S., breakthrough infections can and are still happening. (Meaning you can still get infected with COVID even if you’re fully vaccinated and boosted.) The vaccine is meant to prevent serious illness, hospitalization, and death.
According to the CDC, 208 million people in the U.S. have now been fully vaccinated. Here’s how the current vaccine numbers stack up:
- 73.3% of the population has received at least one dose
- 62% of the population is fully vaccinated
- 68.8 million people have received a booster dose
The CDC recommends a booster dose of the vaccine for anyone who received a vaccine at least six months ago and is:
- 65 years or older
- Age 18+ and live in a long-term care setting
- Age 18+ and have underlying medical condition
- Age 18+ and work or live in a high-risk setting