Three Things You Need To Consider Before Hiring A Locum Tenens

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Every practice owner and manager is familiar with the struggle of properly staffing your team. 

Throughout the pandemic and since it ended, practices of all types and sizes have struggled to maintain enough staff to properly care for their patients. 

This often leads to burnout amongst your staff and providers. 

One thing that can be done to ease the burden when it comes to having a sufficient number of physicians is to utilize locum tenens. 

About a year ago we wrote about the benefits of locum tenens. In this blog we want to look at three things you want to consider before hiring a locum tenens. 

  1. Be Clear About Your Expectations – Prior to going down the path of locum tenens, you must have a clear understanding of EXACTLY what it is that you are looking for. Failure to do this will make it much more difficult to get the results you want. Detail the things that you believe are missing in terms of personnel and who the ideal individual(s) would be to fill that missing piece or pieces. As you are interviewing for a locum tenens position make sure you share these expectations with the person so they understand what you are looking for and what your expectations will be. 
  2. Do Your Research – This goes hand-in-hand with the first point. You want to make sure you are working with quality physicians. After all, a locum tenens will still be representing you and your practice. You can start with the National Association of Locum Tenens Organizations. This research will give you a greater confidence in the individual(s) that you are inviting into your practice. 
  3. Prepare Your Practice – A locum tenens hire for your practice is a unique situation. On one hand you want this person to be like anyone else on your team, going through the same process of training and orientation. On the other hand, they are there for a limited time so the learning curve has to be a little more steep. You can make this process easier by streamlining your current new employee onboarding process or creating a simpler process for locum tenens. Whatever approach you take, the goal should be to get the individual(s) you hire up to speed as quickly and seamlessly as possible. 
  4. BONUS: Consider a Trial – A quick bonus one here. If possible, consider a trial run. Going the locum tenens route might be a huge departure for you and your team. This means it may take longer to acclimate to it. A shorter trial run may give everyone the opportunity to properly adjust. 

Hiring a locum tenens can be highly beneficial for you and your practice. However, you must do this under the correct conditions. This means taking the time to consider the things we listed above to ensure that the situation works out for both your practice and the individual(s) you are bringing in. If you do this then you will are more likely to reap the benefits. 


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