The meaning of locum tenens

December 1st, 2022 4 Min read The meaning of locum tenens Blog

Merriam-Webster defines locum tenens as “one filling an office for a time or temporarily taking the place of another.” When Therus Kolff founded CompHealth in 1979, he thought this term would be fitting to describe physicians who work temporary assignments.

Today, CompHealth not only works with physicians, but also NPs, PAs, and other allied medical professionals to provide much-needed patient care.

Why work locum tenens?

There are many reasons why a healthcare provider might want to work locum tenens, including:

  • Extra money
  • More control over work schedule or location
  • To fill a gap between permanent positions
  • To take a break from the daily routine
  • To work part-time after retirement

Meet real locum tenens providers

Dr. Trevor Cabrera, a pediatrician, started working locums right out of residency. After 12 months, he’d already paid off 1/3 of his medical-school debt. He says he’s on track to completely pay off his loans after three years of working locums.

“My monthly locum tenens income alone is close to double that of all ‘traditional’ jobs I could have taken and more than 50% of my yearly income as a resident. I’m doing what I love as a pediatrician but making a salary close to an orthopedic surgeon.” – Dr. Trevor Cabrera

Neurologist Andrew Wilner, MD, used the flexibility of working locums to do medical-mission work and pursue his hobbies, such as scuba diving. He was able to take breaks from practicing medicine for months at a time to travel, write, and contribute to a medical nonprofit organization.

“Although I had always considered myself an experienced traveler, travel opportunities dramatically increased once I pursued the locum life. A flexible schedule allowed trips I could only have imagined in my previous role as a staid partner in a neurology group. Locum tenens turned travel fantasies into realities.” – Dr. Andrew Wilner

Sophia Khawly, a nurse practitioner, has taken several assignments in rural areas. She appreciates the chance to hone her skills in smaller facilities where patients may have more difficulty accessing care. The pay and schedule also tend to be favorable for rural assignments.

“Working in rural health is rewarding because you get to care for vulnerable populations. Without your services, these communities would have limited access to care. Even as a locum, you start to see the same patients over and over.” – Sophia Khawly, NP

Working with CompHealth

CompHealth takes away all the headaches of finding a locum tenens job, like licensing, credentialing, housing, and more. Here’s what you can expect when you work with CompHealth.

What kind of locum tenens jobs are available?

Locum tenens assignments are available nationwide for all types of specialties. Whether you want to work near the beach or in the mountains, in a rural hospital or a busy metro area, there are opportunities available.

Here are some specialties that are in the highest demand:

Locum tenens jobs for surgeons

Locum tenens jobs for OB/GYNs

Locum tenens jobs for anesthesiologists

Locum tenens jobs for cardiologists

Want to learn more about locum tenens? Give us a call at 800.453.3030 or view today’s locum tenens opportunities.

This article was updated on 12/1/2022.


Alisa Tank

Alisa Tank

Alisa Tank is a content specialist at CHG Healthcare. She is passionate about making a difference in the lives of others. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, road trips, and exploring Utah’s desert landscapes.

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