Over 90% of healthcare facilities in the United States rely on locum tenens to fill coverage gaps left by the shortage of physicians. But solving staffing shortages isn’t the only benefit of using locums physicians.
Locums providers offer a myriad of benefits beyond just solving healthcare staffing challenges: they bring a level of talent, adaptability, resourcefulness, and diversity of perspective to any medical team they join. They also offer hospitals a way to reduce physician burnout, by offering alternatives beyond retirement or career changes for physicians who are feeling overworked and looking for a change.
Here are some of the benefits locums physicians can bring to your facility:
Locums physicians aren’t just gap fillers; they’re top-tier talent
Locums physicians help facilities solve their healthcare staffing challenges brought on by doctor shortages. But they’re not just filling a gap; they’re offering quality care and top-tier talent.
Often, talented physicians gravitate toward environments that have better resources––which often translates to facilities in big cities. If you’re a level 1 trauma center in Philadelphia, for instance, you’re more likely to attract a top-notch physician, while that same physician may be reluctant to commit to a position in a facility that has fewer resources.
With locums, facilities––especially those in rural communities––that wouldn’t ordinarily have access to these providers can get top-tier talent that they otherwise might not be able to attract or afford.
Locums physicians bring a diversity of perspective to facilities.
Every facility has their own way of doing things. But the fresh perspective of a locums physician can add a diversity of perspective that can sharpen your entire medical team. Locums physicians with different educational backgrounds, clinical experience, and life experience serve to expand the breadth and depth of your facility’s medical expertise.
That might mean that they’re trained in a new technique that hasn’t yet been introduced to your medical team, or that they have experience with a particular patient population that would be useful for your facility; or it might just mean that they have different thought processes that your team hasn’t considered.
Whatever the case, the diversity of experience that locums physicians bring can help expand the perspective of your facility.
Locums physicians are adaptable, resourceful, and always ready to make the best of any situation.
Locums physicians tend to be more flexible and resourceful than your average physician, simply because they have so much experience jumping into new situations. Their wide variety of experience means that they are excellent at adapting quickly: to new charting systems, new patient populations, or just your particular team’s way of doing things.
And because they’ve experienced so many different practice settings, they’re often able to bring a unique ability to make the best of whatever situation they’re walking into. As one of our Hayes Locums physicians said of her experience as a locums physician, “having that experience of being able to navigate different ways of doing things, figuring out how to make do with what you have, makes walking into a locums environment fairly smooth and easy.”
Locums can help reduce physician burnout, ensuring that talented physicians can continue to provide quality care.
While locum tenens is often thought of as a solution for hospitals, it’s also a solution for providers who want to stay in the field, but can no longer cope with the demands of full-time medicine. 86% of physicians surveyed in the most recent physician compensation report reported that they feel overworked, with over a third of them are considering early retirement, and two thirds are considering changing careers.
Locums also provides support and coverage that can help prevent your full-time staff from becoming overwhelmed, providing them with relief instead of leading them to burning out. By offering an alternative for physicians who are ready to slow down, but not give up medicine altogether, it also ensures that we keep talented physicians in the medical field, instead of losing them to burnout.