Doctors: Don’t let student debt repayment become a career anchor - Floyd Lee Locums


Doctors: Don’t let student debt repayment become a career anchor

by Kelly Starkey in How to Find a Job, Job Market, Locums Lifestyle 28/09/2017

Doctors: Don’t let student debt repayment become a career anchor


You’ve studied for years. Completed residency programs. Maybe even tacked on additional certifications to boot. It’s time to celebrate! Only… there’s a rub. In the course of earning your medical license—something only 0.0000001 percent of people are able to achieve—you begin your career with a mountain of student loan debt.

So you take stock.

You remember seeing a hospital’s flyer offering a $75,000 sign-on bonus and relocation. But when you get the contract it says the bonus is actually a loan, which you’re responsible to repay if you leave early. In some cases, repay with interest!

You consider public service loan forgiveness (PSLF). Sure—non-profit organizations don’t have the highest pay, but they can offer huge sums of debt repayment. However, you find their fine print reads much the same as the flyer; stay 10 years or pay us back.

In a world of “stay put or pay out,” it’s easy to feel caught between a rock and a hard place. But that feeling doesn’t have to be permanent.

Locum tenens offers additional opportunities to pay off student loan debt without the golden handcuffs. Take the pay for example. Typically, locum tenens positions have higher salaries than full-time roles at hospitals. It doesn’t take a savvy accountant to recognize more cash equals lower debt potential. In addition, by design, many locums opportunities don’t require long-term commitments. This allows you to be more flexible with your career and gain a wealth of experience.

What’s important is to consider all the factors. Is a hospital just offering a single “bonus” with strings? Or, like locum tenens, can they provide greater earning potential, travel reimbursement options, expedited licensure/certification assistance, relocation and more?

Take those questions one step further: Are they being your advocate and offering you a concierge experience before, during and after hire? At Floyd Lee Locums, we provide 24/7 support from industry veterans who promote you, your career and your financial goals.

Starting your career should be met with excitement, not financial dread. Don’t let any opportunity or contract convince you otherwise.