A superhero doesn’t have to have a red cloak and extraterrestrial powers to save the day. Just like iconic comic book characters, locum tenens physicians often come to the rescue for many facilities and practices across the country.
Whether it’s a rural care clinic struggling to find a replacement doctor or an urban emergency department seeking extra help in a new program, locums physicians combat physician needs, anytime, anywhere. But, in order to uphold the culture of any facility and care for a variety of patients, there are certain qualities a traveling hero must possess.
Here are 5 must-have merits for locums physicians:
Autonomy. Locums physicians must thrive independently. Because of your unique traveling status, you tend to choose your assignments, control your schedule, and visit new destinations frequently.
Adaptability. Getting along with new staff members, handling various situations, and experiencing new hospital systems are just a few ways you need to adapt as a mobile physician.
Flexibility. As soon as a facility has an opportunity available, locums physicians must be ready to be deployed if the position matches their interests. Locums assignments vary and can be 3 days long or ongoing for 8 months!
Dependability. Facilities seek locum tenens physicians for a reason. They expect the locums physician to be on time and provide help when needed. While, at your temporary facility, you may be asked to pick up a mid-level shift, take on-call shifts, plan for extra consulting, and perform procedures, only within your abilities that is.
Organized. Although your staffing agency will take care of the paperwork, credentialing, and travel arrangements, you still have to remember your reservations, plan for facility orientations, and explore a unique destination on a busy schedule. Always carry a planner!
If you can uphold these five merits as a locum tenens physician, you will be well on your way to providing quality care to facilities and patients who need it most—without turning green, soaring high, and wall-crawling!