Travel speech-language pathology, or SLP, jobs are popular allied health jobs with Nomad Health. The demand for these professionals continues to grow due to an aging population requiring more speech-language services for conditions such as dementia, stroke, and swallowing problems, along with an increasing need for pediatric SLP services for conditions such as autism or developmental delays. According to the , the demand for speech-language pathologists is expected to grow 19% by 2032, making these jobs a high priority for healthcare facilities to fill and ultimately creating more opportunities for travel speech-language pathologists to fill those gaps.
A , or travel SLP, is an allied health clinician who helps patients of all ages with cognitive and/or social communication disorders, in addition to swallowing disorders. Travel SLPs work temporary assignments, typically for 8-13 weeks, in different locations and facilities.
Travel speech-language pathologist job duties range from detailed clinical assessments to educating and guiding patients through exercises. Each travel speech-language pathologist job on Nomad Health comes with unique duties and responsibilities based on the facility's needs. However, travel speech-language pathologists generally have the following duties and responsibilities:
A core responsibility of a travel speech-language pathologist is to evaluate levels of speech, language, or swallowing difficulty in their patients. Aside from a deep understanding of anatomy and physiology, they may utilize a number of modalities to achieve this, such as:
Once a thorough assessment of the patient’s condition is performed, travel SLPs may create and carry out an individualized treatment plan that addresses specific functional needs. For example, for premature infants who may have swallowing issues, a travel SLP may create a plan to safely transition the child from parenteral feeding to oral feeding, based on the etiology of the condition and the overall progression of the child's development.
For adults with neurological deficits resulting from a stroke, a travel SLP may perform a swallow screen early on to determine the need for rehabilitative services. As the patient’s neurological deficits become apparent, the travel SLP may work over a specific duration of time to help the patient regain the ability to swallow as safely as possible.
Travel speech-language pathologist jobs involve quite a bit of teaching. It’s important for travel SLPs to be aware of the different learning styles of patients based on personal preference, age, and medical conditions.
Teaching young children may require a different approach to achieve an optimal result, as opposed to older patients who have dementia or neurological deficits. In some instances, you may be teaching family members who will be the patient’s primary caregiver. These family members may have little to no medical experience, so having patience and knowing how to teach concepts in a clear and simple way is an important skill.
Documentation is an important responsibility of travel speech-language pathologists because allows an accurate record of interventions performed, along with any clinical observations. Documenting accurately for insurance reimbursement is an important aspect of the job as well. According to the , travel SLPs are responsible for documenting crucial information related to their care including:
Assessments: This can include objective or subjective baseline diagnostic testing, interpretation of test results, and clinical findings. Documenting reassessments is appropriate when the patient exhibits a change in functional speech and language communication skills.
Treatment: A care plan relevant to the patient’s disorder should include continued assessment of progress during treatment, including an analysis of the patient’s status at regular intervals. Short-term and long-term measurable goals should also be included.
Daily notes: SOAP (Subjective, Objective, Assessment, and Plan) notes are an effective way to document daily
Progress reports: These should include an initial functional communication level of the patient, the current functional level of the patient, the progress (or lack of progress) specific to the expected rehabilitation, and any potential changes in the plan of treatment.
It’s important to note that no travel job is the same. Every SLP travel job comes with its own set of duties and responsibilities based on the current needs of the healthcare facility hiring for the role. While the above duties and responsibilities are common across many travel speech-language pathologist jobs, individual travel jobs listed on Nomad Health may come with duties outside of this scope. If you have questions about a travel speech-language pathologist job on Nomad, reach out to a .
To get a travel speech-language pathologist job, you must meet certain educational and professional requirements. It’s important to note that these job requirements may differ based on the state you’re in and what the facility requires for a particular travel speech-language pathologist job.
To qualify for a travel speech-language pathologist job, you must have a master's or doctorate degree in Speech-Language Pathology from an accredited program.
To get a travel speech-language pathologist job, you must be licensed within the state where you practice. For travelers, it’s important to check with each state’s licensing board requirements for where you intend to take an assignment. When it comes to certifications, some hiring managers may require or look for these:
Facilities that hire travel speech-language pathologists expect them to adapt quickly to new environments, which is why most travel speech-language pathologist jobs require at least one year of hands-on experience. Some facilities may accept new grads who have fellowship training.
There are a lot of reasons why considering a travel speech-language pathologist job is a smart move. From financial incentives to personal growth, a travel job might be just what you need to take the next step in your career.
With an aging population and a consistent need for SLP services for infants and children, the demand for travel speech-language pathologists is high. This can mean more job security and less susceptibility to economic downturns.
Travel speech-language pathologist jobs may pay more than staff speech-language pathologist jobs. Many things can impact travel pay including your experience, education, location, credentials, and facility needs. When you browse travel speech-language pathology jobs on Nomad, you’ll see a pay breakdown, including the travel stipend, of every job so you have an idea of how much you’ll earn before you apply.
Travel speech-language pathologist jobs allow you to collaborate cross-functionally with interdisciplinary healthcare staff ranging from physicians to nurses and other allied health professionals. When you work closely with these teams, you’ll get a broader perspective on patient care that you can add to your skill set.
Travel speech-language pathologist jobs can put you on the fast track to learning about the latest education, techniques, treatments, and equipment used in the field. If you’re interested in getting ahead of the curve, a travel SLP job might be right for you.
One of the biggest perks of travel speech-language pathologist jobs is deciding where you want to work. Working travel speech-language pathologist jobs in new locations can expose you to new facilities and patient populations you may not experience in a regular staff position.
Most clinicians say travel speech-language pathologist jobs offer a combination of high compensation and opportunities to expand your clinical experience. However, what makes the ideal travel SLP job usually depends on personal preferences, career goals, and financial goals.
Research is vital to finding the best travel speech-language pathologist jobs for you. First, you need to determine which travel agencies offer travel SLP jobs. Unfortunately, not all agencies work with travel speech-language pathologists.
Next, you should consider the reputation of the agency you’re working with. Use a search engine and read the testimonials and reviews that other travel speech-language pathologists leave. These reviews should give you a general idea of whether the agency meets your standards, and if other SLPs recommend them.
While pay may often be the most important benefit of travel speech-language pathologist jobs, remember that additional perks such as stipends for scrubs, licenses, and travel, along with health insurance and the option to invest in a 401(k) should be factored into the equation. Unlike Nomad, not all agencies offer , so it's important to compare the additional perks before you accept a travel SLP job.
The demand for travel speech-language pathologist jobs varies across different states based on factors such as the overall demand for SLP services, the number of healthcare facilities, and the demographics of the regional population. Additionally, states with larger populations and advanced health systems may need more speech-language pathologist travelers.
If it’s your first time accepting a travel SLP job, there are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind that will help you feel prepared and ready to go on your first day. Every travel speech-language pathologist job is different, but excelling in one or more of these areas will ensure you are set up for success.
One of the most important questions you can ask your hiring manager is about the orientation and onboarding process for your travel job. Knowing how much support you will have at the beginning, and how much you’ll need to learn independently can help set realistic expectations for your first week on the job.
Being adaptable is the key to starting any travel speech-language pathologist job. You will need to be prepared for differences in workflow, charting systems, and resources when working any travel job.
Along the way, remember to network and build relationships with your new colleagues. Connect with other travel speech-language pathologists and learn about their experiences with the facility and traveling in general.
Remember to pack all the essentials you will need for the duration of your travel assignment. Depending on where your travel speech-language pathologist job is, it may be difficult to find familiar stores for last-minute items, especially if you’re working in a rural area. We recommend packing a few extra pairs of scrubs, toiletries, and anything else to make you comfortable during your stay.
Travel speech-language pathologist job contract length varies depending on the needs of the facility. In general, most travel SLP job contracts are 13 weeks long, although it’s not uncommon to find contracts that are longer.
Yes, you can choose the location for your travel speech-language pathologist job. Nomad Health features travel speech-language pathologist jobs across the United States. Some are in desirable locations like California and New York.
Yes! Travel speech-language pathologist jobs are an excellent way to expedite professional growth. Uou can get exposure to new environments, patient populations, and technology that may help level up your pay and skillset.