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As the healthcare industry continues to grow and develop, so too does how physicians prefer to practice. In today’s employment landscape, doctors have options—and opportunities. That’s because locum tenens is bringing forward a whole new set of short- and long-term temporary roles to meet the rising need for physicians, specifically in rural and underserved communities.

What’s contributing to the rise?
Several factors are facilitating the need for more locums physicians nationwide. Some are based solely on how doctors prefer to practice, while others are developing out of a changing industry.

Take for example that, through the Affordable Care Act and its subsequent iterations, there are more newly insured patients in the marketplace. There’s also an increasing trend in the consolidation of healthcare facilities and systems, which can result in job change and turnover.

For the physicians on the ground, the most popular reasons to take a locums career were for location (89%), pay rate (67%), length of assignment (60%) and patient load (38%), according to the 2017 Survey of Temporary Physician Staffing Trends.

A discipline with all ages
Locum tenens work isn’t generational. Physicians across the experience and age spectrum are finding value in performing locums work. Younger doctors say they appreciate the opportunity for greater earning potential to address steep student loan debt immediately after medical school/residency. Conversely, veteran physicians acknowledge locum’s ability to offer an “off-ramp” to practicing so they can “step back” while supplementing retirement income.

In the beginning, many physicians found the locums lifestyle limiting because, for some assignments, travel was required. While the travel piece of the equation is still largely needed in order to reach rural and underserved communities, the discipline has evolved to offer more flexibility to doctors. For example, most modern healthcare staffing agencies now offer competitive travel packages that cover your stay, there are negotiable terms to where you can bring your family along, and the rise in telemedicine continues to transform how we think of care delivery.

Final Thoughts
Is locum tenens right for you? Every year, more and more physicians are discovering the benefits of the locums lifestyle and these new hospital staffing solutions. If you are curious about locum tenens and not completely satisfied with your current employment, visit us at our Job Opportunities page.

Floyd Lee Locums provides an elite concierge experience to Physicians, CRNAs, NPs, PAs and other advanced practice healthcare clinicians searching for new career opportunities. Founded by industry veterans Matt Floyd and Natasha Lee, Floyd Lee Locums is a locum tenens healthcare staffing organization with 60 years of combined locums and staffing experience. Our hands-on approach was created to seamlessly deliver best-in-class service to clinicians and facilities nationwide. We endeavor to be your partner, creating personalized career solutions that are mindful of your goals and positively impact patient outcomes.