What is Locum Tenens?

May 23, 2021

Locum tenens comes from a Latin phrase that means “to hold a place.” Therefore, a locum tenens physician is someone who holds the place of a regular physician while they are absent. Locum tenens physicians are a treasured part of healthcare as they are highly trained healthcare professionals who are able to move around as needed, cover for other physicians, and ensure all patients receive adequate care when practices are understaffed.

The Importance of Locum Tenens to Healthcare Providers

Combat High Physician Burnout

Physcian burnout is a common occurrence in the medical community categorized by exhaustion, depersonalization and lack of efficacy in physicians. Not only can burnout result in increased turnover, but it also presents challenges with both hiring and retaining staff. If you notice this trend in your healthcare facility, it’s likely a good idea to contact a locum tenens provider to help lower your staff's stress levels and improve their ability to recharge their mental and physical states.

Cover Physician Shortages

An increase in patients has driven the need for more physicians. There are several reasons for this increase, but most notably is the aging population of baby boomers who require more extensive services and care. In addition, an estimated 80% of baby boomers have at least one chronic health condition. With this growing number of patients, more physicians are required to serve their needs adequately. This is where locum tenens physicians can help to alleviate some of the pressure on the job.

Recover Lost Revenue

Healthcare facilities without medical professionals are just buildings with supplies in them. Physicians are responsible for creating a majority of the revenue made in healthcare facilities of all sizes, from major hospitals to small clinics. When a position goes unfilled, that generates a natural loss in revenue. To give you an idea, a family practice physician creates nearly 1.5 million dollars in charges annually. This means a job vacancy could be costing a practice almost $4,000 each day. Locum tenens physicians can help to temporarily fill these vacancies and continue to generate revenue for the facility while also ensuring your patients are adequately cared for.

Avoid Lower Quality of Care

When a practice is understaffed, the effects are felt throughout the healthcare facility. Your remaining staff is forced to take on more responsibility than they can realistically handle, resulting in lower quality of care for your patients. This usually results in high wait times and rushed visits with patients, which, in turn, frustrates patients and will likely cause them to look elsewhere for treatment. High-quality patient care is the number one priority in the medical industry, and turning to locum tenens physicians during these times helps ensure that standard is met.

The Benefits of Locum Tenens Providers

Locum tenens physicians are available on-demand to help your facility avoid crises.

  • Flexibility

Locums jobs offer the opportunity to bring in new staffing without the need for contracts. This allows healthcare administrators to restructure before committing permanently.

  • Provides a Pathway to Assess Skills Before Hiring

Similarly, hiring locum tenens allows hospital administrators to guarantee quality and fit before committing to a long-term contract.

  • Provides Gap Coverage

Locum tenens help ensure that your practice is never understaffed by quickly deploying locum tenens physicians, ensuring that your facility has coverage.

  • Allows Permanent Staff to Take Time Off, Thus Alleviating Burnout

The field of medicine is an incredibly fast-paced, stressful industry where life and death are on the line almost every day. Hiring temporary locums allows your full-time permanent staff members to take much-needed breaks, resulting in better performance upon their return.

  • Rural Community Coverage

In remote areas that are already difficult to staff permanently, locums play an essential role in ensuring staff coverage. These assignments provide all patients access to high-quality medical care, no matter where they live.

  • More Revenue

With no physician vacancies and locum physicians on assignment, your facility will be able to profit instead of losing out on thousands of dollars every day.

  • Better Patient Care

Last but not least, hiring locum tenens results in better patient care. With an adequately staffed facility, your healthcare professionals will have a more manageable workload that allows them to offer your patients the highest quality care possible.

How We Can Help

Health Carousel can assist your medical facility by searching for and connecting you with the best locum tenens physicians in many different specialties. Whether your practice has several vacancies or your staff members are experiencing burnout, we’re here to help alleviate some of that stress by securing top-of-the-line locum tenens physicians for your advanced practice, clinic, or hospital. Our thorough vetting process will ensure that only the best physicians will be assigned to your healthcare facility. So say goodbye to revenue losses, burnout, and lower care quality- instead, welcome new locum tenens physicians provided by Health Carousel. We can offer solutions to your facility’s unique challenges.

Contact us today!

About Health Carousel

Health Carousel is committed to working with world-class healthcare facilities across the country, providing rewarding assignments for Registered Nurses, Physicians, Allied Health Professionals, and Advanced Practice Professionals, and aggressively attracting the best internal talent for our brands across a wide range of industries and specialties, at all career levels.