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Getting Started on Locum Tenens


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What is locum tenens? Essentially, locum tenens work consists of a physician working in another practice or hospital on a temporary basis. It’s been around since 1979, and it’s a form of work that has undergone rapid transformation over the years, especially since the COVID-19 pandemic has upended health care staffing. It’s a different way of life for physicians and other providers, and physicians move toward locum work for a variety of reasons: better work/life balance, making extra money, traveling and seeing other places, and many others.

So if you wanted to explore locum tenens, where do you get started? Medical Economics sat down with Rip Patel, M.D., an emergency medicine doctor, to discuss.

Dr. Patel is the founder and lead for Mercision Emergency Medicine. He completed his MD at the UT Southwestern Medical Center, his MPH at Kings College London, and after a short hiatus in general surgery, he found his home in emergency medicine, where he completed his residency at the Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals. Dr. Patel is an Assistant Professor at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX.

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