Tania responded to an advert on Head Medical’s website for a band 5 nurse in Bermuda. We catch up with her 15 months after she first applied where she has now been living and working on the island as a specialist surgical nurse for approximately a year.
"I had always wanted to train as an RN but it wasn’t until later in life that I found myself with the perfect circumstances to do so. I had gone home back to NZ after 20 years overseas living and working in Australia, the UK, the USA, and France. I made the most of the local resources and trained in my home province of Taranaki, New Zealand.
I was working in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in a tertiary cancer/transplant hospital, surgical oncology department when I saw the advert. As I had decided to move on from Saudi I was actually looking for jobs in Australia when the advertisement for Bermuda popped up on Head Medical’s website. I knew a little bit of background about Bermuda as a friend's brother lived there, and I had also worked with a Nurse who had worked at BHB previously so I thought why not?
One of the first things I considered was the visa application process and general registration and how long it would take. I had wonderful help and support from Head Medical, they ensured the whole recruitment process was smooth which helped a lot. Once I was offered the job, Head Medical provided me with a dedicated Registration Consultant who explained every step of the process and kept me on track as I worked through it - I don’t think I would have been able to navigate the process quite as easily without that support!
I’m currently working in the acute surgical ward in Bermuda. The thing I like most is the diversity of my team members who are from all around the globe, Canada, Philippines, India, Caribbean nations, UK, Ireland, USA, Eastern Europe, South America, and Australia. I have found it different from my previous nursing roles and some of the ward processes and procedures vary, it has been a good opportunity to learn about a new health care system. Health care is mainly insurance-based and this was something I’m wasn't used to as NZ has a public health care system.
I’ve been living and working in Bermuda for the past year and quite simply... it’s been great. There are many layers to the culture here which fascinates me, I love the pace of life and the beach life is fantastic. If you’re a fan of beaches, boating, snorkeling, scuba diving, all of this is on offer in the summer months!
Island life can take some adapting to though. Considering Bermuda is so small, there are a few challenges, one is the expense. In most countries, there are cheaper alternatives for certain things however there aren’t here. Someone told me when I arrived that you really have to choose what you spend your money on, which is so true! So, with good budgeting, you can live well and save some money but you need to be mindful. Another thing that you may need to get used to is the change of pace. Things don't happen as quickly here as they do on the mainland which takes a bit of getting used to.
If I could provide any advice for other nurses considering a job in Bermuda with the help of Head Medical, I would say - do your research and arrive prepared. Bermuda is not in the Caribbean and has a different climate to what you might expect. It does rain and get cool in the winter so remember to bring some warmer clothing for those winter months. As with any move you will have set up costs, so I recommend you bring $$ with you - don't just rely on your first couple of paychecks to get you through as there are deductions like rent/bond/medical insurance etc. It is worth also noting that for the first couple of months you won't be asked to work full-time hours due to the focus being on your orientation. If you can, I would suggest coming with at least 3-4k USD to be able to feel comfortable.
Relocating to Bermuda has been a fantastic move for me. I have had some wonderful experiences, met some lovely people, and had the opportunity to work in another international hospital! Also, one of the best things about living and working in Bermuda is being never far from the water, no matter where you live on the Island. Having the ocean on your doorstep is just beautiful!"
If you're a Registered Nurse looking for a new adventure, contact Jo Hood on +44 (0)131 240 5266 or email email@example.com.