7 states that need locum NPs and PAs today

July 28th, 2021 9 Min read 7 states that need locum NPs and PAs today Blog

Nurse practitioners and physician assistants are always in demand, but right now PAs and NPs are especially needed in the following seven states. If you’re ready to hit the road, these locations offer locums jobs that pay higher than the national average. Plus, you’ll have a chance to see new places, make new friends, and, most importantly, care for patients in need. Here are the top seven states where locum tenens NPs and PAs are needed the most right now.

1. California


As the most-populous state in the U.S., California is home to over 39 million people. And more than half of the population is concentrated in the southern portion — in just five of 58 counties. Combine those numbers with an aging population, and the number of people over 65 in California is projected to double by 2030, reaching 8.4 million.

It goes without saying that NPs and PAs will be needed in California, both now and in the future. The good news is that locums NPs and PAs can earn a higher hourly wage in California than nearly any other state. Plus, as the state with the most national parks, California is a tempting option for PAs and NPs looking for outdoor adventure.

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2. Washington


Washington has repeatedly been named one of the best states to live in, mainly for its unstoppable economy fueled by companies like Amazon, Microsoft, Nordstrom, and Starbucks. Washington's moniker, "The Evergreen State," is a literal homage to the green landscape, coverage of trees, and bodies of water nearly everywhere you look. Last year, Seattle was ranked the #2 healthiest city in the U.S., based on the number of walking and hiking trails available per capita.

Locums NPs and PAs can help keep Washington’s population healthy while earning almost much as PAs and NPs in California. Washington is home to several top ranked hospitals, including University of Washington Medical Center (nationally ranked in six specialties) and Virginia Mason Medical Center.

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3. Iowa


More than 85% of the land in Iowa is used for agricultural purposes, and about 43% of people in Iowa live in a rural location. Unfortunately, residents of Iowa’s rural areas also experience higher rates of cigarette smoking, injuries, high blood pressure, obesity, and disabilities, so they need your care.

Rural health systems often struggle to recruit healthcare workers, and locum tenens NPs and PAs are sorely needed to cover care gaps. Advanced practice providers looking to make a difference can make a big impact in Iowa.

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4. New Mexico

New Mexico

If you’ve never visited New Mexico, you may want to make the Land of Enchantment the next stop on your locums journey. The state is culturally diverse with almost half of New Mexico's residents of Hispanic descent and 23 Native American tribes in the state. Along with rich traditions and festivals to attend all year long, the weather forecast almost always includes sun and the mountains offer both hiking and skiing.

But the poverty rate is fifth highest in the United States: 20% of New Mexicans live in a state of poverty. All or parts of 32 of the state’s 33 counties are designated as health professional shortage areas. Although there are opportunities in the urban areas, like Albuquerque, many less affluent areas desperately need NPs and PAs right now.

View locum tenens  NP jobs in New Mexico
View locum tenens  PA jobs in New Mexico

5. Tennessee


Lack of access to enough healthcare impacts one in five people in Tennessee, with many living in rural areas. NPs and PAs practicing in underserved or rural communities can help extend and increase access to care.

Top-notch hospitals are found all over the state, including Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Baptist Memorial Hospital, and the University of Tennessee Medical Center. Of course PAs and NPs who are music fans can also enjoy everything from your favorite country artists in Music City to the blues and rock and roll of Memphis’s night life.

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6. Oregon


Oregon is known for lush, green landscapes and 300 miles of rocky coastline. It’s also a "full-practice state" for NPs. Since almost every county in Oregon is experiencing a shortage of primary care, NPs and PAs can help fill that primary care gap. According to a report from the Oregon Center for Nursing, only 25% of NPs in Oregon specialize in primary care, which is much lower than the average of 78% in the U.S. Locums NPs and PAs are needed more than ever in the Beaver State.

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7. North Carolina

North Carolina

North Carolina is home to Duke University and University of North Carolina, both with nationally-ranked hospital systems. But not all health stats are positive in North Carolina, and that's where the need for locums NPs and PAs comes in. Healthcare workers are desperately needed in the rural counties of North Carolina, particularly in areas along the northeastern corner of the state. For example, Camden County has no PAs or NPs — not one! Residents of this area also suffer higher rates of heart disease, breast cancer, diabetes, and obesity.

View locum tenens NP jobs in North Carolina
View locum tenens PA jobs in North Carolina

We open new locum tenens job opportunities for NPs and PAs everyday. Give us a call at 800.453.3030 to learn more. 


Rachel Kirk Brown

Rachel Kirk Brown

Rachel is originally from Portland, Oregon. She has writing and editing experience in various fields. Rachel enjoys reading, binge-watching murder-mystery documentaries, cooking, and discovering new areas of Salt Lake on her scooter.

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