New to Locum Tenens? Things You Should Know

Written By Alla Levin
January 30, 2023

New to Locum Tenens? Things You Should Know

In the medical world, locum tenens refers to physicians and other healthcare providers who contract with a medical facility for a specific period ranging from weeks to years before moving to another assignment in a different location.

Finding a locum tenens agency

Finding a reliable locum tenens agency can be challenging if it is your first time. Therefore, consider hiring an agency that simplifies the process and helps their clients through the entire process. You can ask for agency referrals from other physicians doing locum tenens. An experienced agency will find the assignment you want and help you during the transition.

Equally important is to find an agency that has excellent agents who are good listeners. They will genuinely try to get to know the client and be your advocate and representative.

Many doctors recommend looking for a large agency because they have the qualifications and the experience to guide their clients better. A good agency will keep you up to date with your credential and licensing requirements, pay the cost of travel and housing while you are on assignment, and provide medical malpractice insurance.

Benefits of locum tenens

Locum jobs offer several advantages to healthcare professionals, aside from what has already been mentioned.

  • Explore new opportunities and advance your career. When you work with a reliable locum tenens recruiting firm, you can find locum tenens jobs that can help you reach your career goals. It can help you experience practicing in other locations. It will also supplement the income you are currently receiving. Locum tenens jobs can open many opportunities for you, whatever reason you have.
  • You become your own boss. A locum tenens job makes you flexible and autonomous. It allows you to choose where and how much time you want to work in a facility. However, you must provide dental and medical insurance and pay taxes. The tax amount you will pay is the same as what you would pay if you were a permanent employee, but you pay tax quarterly. You can always leave the paperwork to a tax advisor or an accountant.
  • Better fees. A reliable locum tenens agency handles the entire process, including the contract and salary. A locum tenens physician is paid by the hour, and in some cases, by the day. It is better to have hourly payment because you will get more than permanently employed physicians earn. However, the rate varies by location, but you will be paid higher.

Choosing your first assignment

You should ask about what the job requires. Do you prefer working full-time with OR or clinic or being an on-call physician? Choose an accessible location and consider whether you will use your car or rely on public transportation. Moreover, it is vital to determine the patient volume and case mix. You do not want to be overwhelmed with work when you want a low-key assignment.

These are the important things to know about locum tenens. Use this as a guide when considering this option to broaden your experience and find new career opportunities.

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