COVID Updates for Travel Nurses: March 10, 2022
From the outside looking in, it almost appears the COVID-19 pandemic is over. In a lot of ways, the restrictions surrounding the virus have ended: almost the entire country has relaxed social distancing guidelines, mask mandates, and even vaccination mandates.
However, from a technical standpoint, the pandemic is not over, and the virus is still causing havoc around the world. Omicron is surging across Asia, the New York Times reports, and Germany has recorded a new daily high of COVID infections on the same day it announced restrictions would be lifted.
If there’s one thing we know to be true about this strain of the coronavirus, it’s to expect the unexpected. In fact, a new variant called Deltacron — a combination of Omicron and Delta — has already been discovered in the U.S. Surges and local outbreaks are predicted to happen, so COVID travel nurse job postings are sure to be continually popping up. Here’s more on what’s happening with the virus in the U.S. now and what COVID travel nurse jobs are available.
What’s happening with COVID-19 right now
Overall, based on case counts that continue to decrease, the CDC has shifted its COVID-19 monitoring to “Community Levels,” which are meant to provide information about the level of risk — and thus preventive steps that should be taken — based on geographical areas. The levels are:
- Green = low risk
- Yellow = moderate risk
- Orange = high risk
The CDC now only recommends masking indoors for geographical regions at the Orange level (aside from anyone who is immunocompromised or at high risk for severe infection, who should mask indoors regardless of level).
Here’s what’s going on:
- To date, the U.S. has seen a total of 79,198,539 cases of COVID
- The death toll from COVID has reached over 900K: 959,533
- The U.S. is currently averaging about 53,017 COVID cases per day (for reference, last week the U.S. was averaging over 75K daily cases)
- Deaths continue to decrease, with a rate drop of over 8.9% from the previous week
What’s happening in hospitals right now
Hospitalizations, alongside a drop in cases, have also been declining. According to the CDC, there’s been an almost 30% decrease in hospitalizations from the past week recorded.
The New York Times COVID map and tracker reports that new infections are the lowest they have been since last summer (right before the Omicron surge). Overall, the NYT says that every single state in the U.S. is in “better shape” than at the height of Omicron.
Related to the decrease in hospitalizations, travel nursing jobs have decreased in demand since some of the surges of the pandemic, but there are still (and always will be) travel nursing positions.
If you are looking for a COVID-specific travel nursing job, here are some of the current travel nursing positions available with weekly rates listed.
Current COVID-19 travel nursing jobs for March 10, 2022
All of the following positions are MICU/SICU/ICU roles, which are most commonly COVID units:
- California: $6.9K/week
- Idaho: $3.9K/week
- Michigan: $3.5K/week
- New Jersey: $5.6K/week
- New York: $6.1K/week
- North Carolina: $6.5K/week
- Rhode Island: $5.2K/week
- West Virginia: $5.5K/week
What’s happening with the vaccine
As new COVID infections and hospitalizations have fallen, vaccination rates have also slowed. However, more than 75% of the population has still received at least one vaccine dose.
According to the CDC, 216.4 million people in the U.S. have now been fully vaccinated. Here’s how the current vaccine numbers stack up:
- 76.6% of the population has received at least one dose
- 65.2% of the population is fully vaccinated
- 95.5 million people have received a booster dose
COVID booster updates
The CDC recommends you should receive a booster dose of the vaccine if you received Pfizer or Moderna at least six months ago and you are:
- 65 years or older
- Age 18+ and live in a long-term care setting
- Age 18+ and have underlying medical conditions
- Age 18+ and work or live in a high-risk setting
On Jan 4, the CDC shortened the time interval for the Pfizer-BioNTech booster from 6 to 5 months, so you can now receive a Pfizer-BioNTech booster if you received your original vaccination series at least 5 months ago.
The CDC now also recommends that moderately or severely immunocompromised 5–11-year-olds receive a booster dose (the same as the primary dose) of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine 28 days after their second shot.
If you received Johnson & Johnson vaccine, boosters are recommended for anyone who is age 18+ and was vaccinated two or more months ago.
Remember, mixed booster doses are approved, so you’re free to choose which type of booster you want. On Tuesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) also reversed its recommendation against blanket boosters and now recommends that COVID boosters be used in eligible populations. The new recommendation goes against its previous stance that boosters contributed to vaccine inequity and supports protection as new variants emerge.