Many myths circulate around locum tenens work, and these can cause qualified practitioners to avoid this exciting career path. It can also keep clinics and other healthcare centers from finding the professionals that they need. Therefore, we believe that it is important to continue debunking these fallacies so that the truth about locum tenens becomes more widely known.
In reality, locum tenens work provides diverse experiences, the chance to travel, and needed flexibility. Here are some myths about these roles along with facts to dispel them.
Myth #1: Locum Tenens is Inconsistent
Many people fear that assignments – and their finances – can dry up unpredictably with locum tenens work. Fortunately, it is a myth that there are long dry spells. In reality, there is a shortage of physicians in many practice areas. This keeps demand high and makes it easy to find new assignments when your current ones end. Often, you can even find recurring assignments in the same facility!
Working with a locum tenens agency makes it even easier to avoid unwanted gaps in employment. The agency will take your needs and preferences into account when making selections for future assignments.
Myth #2: You’re Away from Family for Extended Periods
There is a large variety of locum tenens positions available, and this makes it so that you can find one that meets your needs for flexibility. Clinicians can take day or weekend shifts or even bring their families along on assignments. However, those who do want longer-term assignments can get them as well. The wide range of opportunities allows you to choose the assignments that fit your desires in terms of flexibility.
Myth #3: You’re Assigned to Undesirable Locations
While some may choose to accept positions in more rural locations to provide care to underserved communities, there are plenty of openings in more appealing areas as well. Depending on your preferences, you can choose a facility near the beach, in a bustling metropolis or close to home. As a locum tenens clinician, you have the ultimate say in where you take an assignment.
Myth #4: You Can't Build Patient Rapport
Some clinicians considering locum tenens fear they won’t have enough time to build rapport with their patients. The truth is locum tenens clinicians can often spend more time with patients because they don't have as many administrative duties as permanent staff members. They may even have the opportunity to take recurring assignments at a facility to build lasting relationships with patients.
Myth #5: The Pay is Lower for Locum Tenens Positions
This myth is outright false. Locum tenens clinicians often make hourly rates that are 33-50 percent higher than those of average full-time staff. Working with a locum tenens agency like VISTA makes it even more likely you’ll receive great pay, as we offer excellent compensation. We also eliminate placement fees, so you can save money on these recurring costs.
Myth #6: Locum Tenens Negatively Impacts Your CV
Working locum tenens gives you the chance to gain experience with many different settings, patient populations, EMR systems, and facilities. When explained properly on your CV, this makes it even more attractive to potential employers and improves your chances of getting better opportunities in the future.
As this shows, locum tenens is a viable and rewarding career option for all clinicians, but there are many misconceptions about this path. Now that you're armed with the facts, take the next step and contact a full-service locum tenens agency like VISTA to help you explore available locum tenens opportunities.