Can Locum Tenens Be a High-Paying Career?

Morgan Lewis, Jr.

Disclosures

August 30, 2012

In This Article

What You Need to Know and Decide

If you're struggling to decide whether locum tenens is the right move for your career, you will need to consider how financially and emotionally attached you are to your current position, Gruss says.

"For me, I became increasingly emotionally detached," he says. "Because of financial attachments, I had to remain there until I could finally make my next career move. It is a move that the entire family also has to accept. Even after the move, everyone has to get accustomed to it."

Regardless of the healthcare environment you choose, ensure that it improves your quality of life -- not just your bank account, physicians say.

"I hope that this ACO model of providing care will work to the benefit of the patient and that the provider can, at the end of the day, smile, take a deep breath, and have the energy to do it again the next day," Gruss says. "Let's not forget that he or she also needs to be there for his or her family."

Before you decide to take a locum tenens assignment, there are several things you should find out. "A good consultant at any agency will have some knowledge about the practice: for example, number of patients per day the doctor will see; type of patients; equipment; and, in general, what will be expected of the physician and who their coworkers will be," says Sean Ebner. "The physicians considering an assignment should also be clear on where they are staying, to make sure that accommodations meet their needs, and what there is to do in the area."

"They also should know something about the agency, including how long it has been in business; rating of the malpractice insurance they offer; whether it provides support services, such as licensure and credentialing; and whether it is certified by the Joint Commission," he adds.

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