Study reveals increase in locum tenens hospitalists
Oct 19, 2012
Jamie Fleischner

Jamie Fleischner

19 Oct, 2012
Publish date: Oct 12, 2012
By:  LocumLife Staff
According to a recent national survey, hospitalists are the most sought-after providers for locum tenens opportunities. In fact, its findings indicate these physicians have been at the top of client facilities’ wish lists for 2 consecutive years. What else does the study reveal?

More hospitalists are practicing locum tenens and an even greater number are pursuing the career alternative on a full-time basis.

Higher pay rates are a significant motivator, according to Robert Harrington, MD, SFHM, practicing hospitalist, chief medical officer of Locum Leaders, and LocumLife editorial advisory board member.

“Demand for hospitalists—part-time and full-time—exceeds supply and that, in turn, has driven up hourly pay for locum tenens over the past several years,” states Dr. Harrington.

The 2012 Hospitalist Locum Tenens Survey—conducted by Locum Leaders, a staffing company based in Alpharetta, Georgia, and Today’s Hospitalist magazine—declares:

  • 11.6 percent of U.S. hospitalists have practiced locum tenens within the past 12 months, an increase over the 10 percent reported in the previous year’s survey.
  • Of hospitalists who accept locum tenens engagements, 14.5 percent identify themselves as full-time locum tenens providers, meaning they are self-employed/independent contractors. In the prior year’s survey, 10.8 percent claimed full-time locum tenens status.
  • Slightly more than 34 percent of the respondents worked one locum tenens engagement within the past year; 16.5 percent worked six or more.
  • The ideal locum tenens opportunity is less than 1 month according to half of the respondents.
  • Compensation, freedom to choose when/where to work, and flexibility are the key incentives for hospitalists who work locum tenens.
  • Eight percent of hospitalists indicate they use social media to browse job ads, reply to a recruiter, or network with others about employment opportunities.
  • Nearly 38 percent of the participants regarded social media in job search as very helpful.
  • Regarding overall social media usage, 60 percent of the respondents use Facebook, 23 percent use LinkedIn, and 7 percent use Twitter.

The data presented in the study is part of a larger, national survey of hospitalists, which was independently conducted during the summer of 2012 by Today’s Hospitalist magazine. A total of 966 responses were tabulated for the survey with a 3% +/- margin of error. Complete responses will be published this month in the Today’s Hospitalist Compensation & Career Guide.

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