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Locum Tenens?
Old 03-19-2011, 06:37 PM   #1
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Locum Tenens?

I am interested in semi retiring in a few years. Am considering doing Locum Tenens work. I know there are quite a few physicians/allied medical fields on this board and wondered if any had considered this. Any one have any experience with Locum work? If so how did it go? Would love to get some feedback on this.

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Old 03-19-2011, 06:57 PM   #2
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Many physicians who do locums are early in their careers, trying out new locations before committing. I did one short locum at the end of my residency, but it would not be my choice for ESR. Because I am in a specialized (ICU) field, doing locums as a way to make a living would probably require me to obtain licensing in multiple provinces (in Canada). Because of the complexity of my field and the importance of teamwork, it would be difficult to step into a new place for a week or two and deliver high quality service. Of course that might be different if one had a regular locum in the same place. As well, my type of clinical work is stressful and I honestly have no desire to prolong it beyond what is required. If I do ESR, I will do managenent consulting instead.

Rich in Tampa (an internist) has done locums recently but IIRC has given it up. I'm sure he will be along shortly.
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Old 03-19-2011, 07:50 PM   #3
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As Meadbh points out it works better in some fields than others. Emergency Medicine is probably one where it works well. Many ER's have one or more locums on staff at any given time. I work a regular locums job of 3-4 shifts monthly at the same hospital for a national staffing agency in addition to a regular staff position.

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Old 03-19-2011, 11:30 PM   #4
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Rich in Tampa (an internist) has done locums recently but IIRC has given it up. I'm sure he will be along shortly.
The rest of us have to call that "Goin' to Vegas"...
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Old 03-21-2011, 07:03 PM   #5
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Thanks for ur replies.

Meadbh,
Agree that locums may be stressful. I do plan on being FI b4 semi er, however the uncertainties of a long er, health care coverage in the USA, and having kids, makes me want to continue working just in case!

Dbldoc,

Er work is well suited for locums. I like the idea of working in the same location, definitely something to explore!


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Old 03-22-2011, 09:00 PM   #6
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I looked into it but decided no. It does not pay well in my field, entails 1099 ss/MC taxes, and can take you away from home for weeks or months in some cases.

Importantly, for me, it generates the same kind of intense working involvement, paper work and other tasks I wanted to be rid of, though admittedly in short doses.

IMHO, a part-time salaried position can accomplish the same goal with the advantages of familiarity, work friends, and better tax and HR benefits.

Just some thoughts.
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As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
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Old 03-23-2011, 02:43 PM   #7
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My father did locum tenens work towards the end of his career. As an anesthesiologist, it paid very well. My sibilings and I were all in college or out of school, so my parents enjoyed spending a few weeks or a month in a new location. He had his own personal corporation, so he was able to run things through it, deduct all of the expenses from the vacation, er... work and continue socking away money in his IRAs.
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Old 03-23-2011, 03:38 PM   #8
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My father did locum tenens work towards the end of his career. As an anesthesiologist, it paid very well. My sibilings and I were all in college or out of school, so my parents enjoyed spending a few weeks or a month in a new location. He had his own personal corporation, so he was able to run things through it, deduct all of the expenses from the vacation, er... work and continue socking away money in his IRAs.
I hear a lot about the relative quality-of-life advantages of being an anesthetist instead of the surgeon or the primary-care physician...
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Old 03-23-2011, 03:59 PM   #9
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I hear a lot about the relative quality-of-life advantages of being an anesthetist instead of the surgeon or the primary-care physician...
There are those, but you probably haven't heard that the malpractice insurance is the 2nd most expensive - behind obstetricians.
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Old 03-23-2011, 07:39 PM   #10
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There are those, but you probably haven't heard that the malpractice insurance is the 2nd most expensive - behind obstetricians.
Hadn't heard that!

I guess it's oxymoronic for such a competitive bunch of medical professionals to sit around debating who has the best quality of life and can retire the earliest...
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Old 03-23-2011, 08:09 PM   #11
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I hear a lot about the relative quality-of-life advantages of being an anesthetist instead of the surgeon or the primary-care physician...
Anesthiologists work hard and have very long hours equal or longer than Surgeons . The Physicians that have the best quality of life in my opinion and Dermatologists . How many times do you think they get called it in the middle of the night ? I would bet almost never .
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