Are Locum Tenens the Future of Healthcare?

Are Locum Tenens the Future of Healthcare? Annashae

Are Locum Tenens the Future of Healthcare?

Many of today’s physicians are opting to accept locum tenens assignments for a variety of reasons. These range from having a more flexible schedule, being a “bridge” when looking for a full-time role, enjoying access to interesting travel opportunities, extra income, and more.

In addition, older physicians are leaving their full-time jobs to work locum tenens assignments – while some younger doctors are jumping on the locum tenens bandwagon right after completing their residency.

Furthermore, more and more hospitals and other healthcare facilities are looking to locum tenens until they fill a permanent role, need someone to fill in when a person has left, when someone is on vacation, or when patient demand is high.

It’s been predicted by most healthcare industry experts that locum tenens will continue to be a growing and viable option for physicians, driven by clinician shortages and healthcare system financial realities.

In this post, we will discuss a few trends that showcase the growing importance of locum tenens workers and will look at how locum tenens will continue to shape the future of healthcare in the years ahead.

By The Numbers: An Increase in Locum Tenens Contracts In Recent Years

A recent article from Revcycle Intelligence states that locums, “were popular in 2021 and 2022, with 88 percent of healthcare organizations reporting that they used locum tenens physicians or other locum tenens providers during the last year. This figure was up slightly from 84 percent in 2019.

Healthcare facilities also turned to locum tenens providers to address the shortage of behavioral health specialists and psychiatrists. Nearly a quarter (23 percent) of respondents reported using temporary behavioral health providers (during 2021 and 2022).”

Healthcare Facilities will Continue Using Locum Tenens Professionals

Hospitals, clinics and other healthcare organizations are expected to continue to use locum tenens for various reasons – including maintaining access to care for patients and filling temporarily vacant positions when clinicians are on family leave or vacation.

And since the COVID outbreak – when burnout prompted the exodus of many health professionals including physicians – more medical providers are hiring locum tenens doctors to meet rising patient demand and assist during peak periods such as the influenza season.

The bottom line? The pandemic, combined with the health provider workforce shortage, has made finding permanent staff even more difficult. Locums – once considered a gap filler – are now looked upon as a need, instead of a “nice to have”.

Is Locum the Future of Healthcare? It’s Looking that Way

Many healthcare providers agree that locum tenens is a valid solution for both physicians and providers by helping address the ongoing healthcare workforce shortage.

Locum tenens helps alleviate the imbalance between clinician supply and demand in urban versus rural or other underserved areas. And also enables physicians to enjoy a better work/life balance – with more professional flexibility.

The best way to learn more about the potential benefits of a locum tenens career, is to reach out to an experienced healthcare recruiter who can provide their expertise and discuss the pros and cons of locum tenens based on your career goals.

Reach Out to Annashae Today

At Annashae Healthcare Staffing and Consulting, we’re dedicated to the placement of highly-skilled clinical practitioners in short and long-term locum tenens positions. As a nationwide medical staffing and consulting firm, we provide a range of services that enable our candidates to quickly find the career opportunity that fits their needs. For information on how you can further your clinical career, contact us today.