More Hospitalists Working as Locum Tenens: Locum Leaders Survey

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National survey shows increase in hospital medicine physicians filling temporary staffing needs

Growing client demand for temporary hospitalists means more opportunities to work as a locum tenens.

A new national survey of Hospitalists shows more are working as locum tenens and an even larger percentage are pursuing locum tenens as a full-time career.

The findings come from a new survey of Hospitalists regarding their locum tenens work patterns. For the second consecutive year, the survey was conducted for Locum Leaders, a national locum tenens company specializing in Hospital Medicine, in conjunction with Today's Hospitalist magazine.

11.6% of this year’s respondents said they had worked as locum tenens (a Latin term describing temporary, contracted health care providers) within the past 12 months. Of the locum tenens respondents, 14.5% said they were working full-time as a locum tenens provider.

These are increases from 2011 when 10% of all hospitalists reported working as locum tenens, and 10.8% of locum tenens Hospitalists said they were full-time locums.

Growing client demand for temporary hospitalists means there are more opportunities to work as a locum tenens. And those opportunities are also more lucrative, according to Robert Harrington, MD, SFHM, a practicing Hospitalist and the Chief Medical Officer of Locum Leaders.

“Industry data show that hourly pay rates for locum tenens Hospitalists have steadily increased over the past two years. I think that’s a big reason why there are more locum tenens in the specialty and more doctors who are willing to self-employ and work full-time in locum roles,” said Harrington.

This year’s survey, for the first time, asked Hospitalists about social media usage. 60% of respondents said they used Facebook, 23% reported using LinkedIN, and 7% had used Twitter. The results, which mirror consumer adoption of these sites, aren’t surprising to Dr. Harrington.

“Hospital Medicine is a newer specialty that skews toward younger physicians who are open to the use of social media.” he said.

Another sign of growing social media adoption: 8% of Hospitalists in the survey said they had used social media in a job search to browse job ads, reply to a recruiter or to network with others about employment opportunities.

Hospital Medicine is the nation's fastest growing medical specialty, according to the Society of Hospital Medicine, and Hospitalists are the number one locum tenens hiring need at U.S. hospitals. Complete survey results are available online at or by emailing survey(at)locumleaders(dot)com.

About Locum Leaders
Locum Leaders is a leading locum tenens recruitment firm specializing in hospitalist jobs and other physician employment opportunities. For more information and to find locum tenens jobs, visit the company's website at, email info(at)locumleaders(dot)com or call 877-562-8656 (877-LocumJobs).

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Alex Gramling
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