Manage Career Transitions with Locum Tenens

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Covelo Direct
Smiling professional female doctor taking notes, looking at laptop screen

Throughout every physician’s career, there are several milestone transitions. Following the completion of a residency and/or fellowship program, periodic transitions between full-time jobs, and the ultimate transition into retirement.

Locum tenens can be an ideal way to navigate these periods of change for more reasons than one. Not only does working locums offer a great income, but it also allows physicians to explore different professional opportunities and career pathways.

Working locums out of residency

Covelo Direct senior recruiters frequently work with locum tenens physicians who are transitioning out of residency. Many are attracted to the locums path because it provides an opportunity to achieve rapid career growth and provides income to support your new lifestyle.

Consider that most locum tenens contracts cover physicians’ housing and transportation costs, thereby minimizing living expenses. This allows you to dedicate a substantial portion of each paycheck to what’s needed most (e.g., medical school loans). We have seen many of our locums physicians seriously focus on the goal of reducing their debt and pay off hundreds of thousands in loans within their first five years.

In some cases, physicians are still unsure about where they’d like to apply for a full-time position after completing their residency. Working locums allows doctors to get a feel for working in multiple clinical settings, different healthcare systems, and in various cities across the country.

Keep in mind that Covelo Direct places physicians in major U.S. cities like Chicago and Boston, as well as remote, underserved communities. A doctor’s day-to-day responsibilities are going to be vastly different in a large, urban hospital than they would be in a rural health clinic.

Bridging the gap between jobs

Once a physician is settled into a chosen career path, there will always come a time to look for the next professional opportunity. Even if this is another full-time position, there may be a few weeks or months in between employment. Whether this gap is of your own choosing, or outside of your control, working locums is an excellent means of staying busy and bringing in an income until your new start date.

Easing into retirement

It’s no secret that medical doctors often have a difficult time retiring cold turkey after working a busy full-time clinical position for several decades. Who wouldn’t get a little uncomfortable having fewer responsibilities after dedicating such a large portion of your life to a medical career?

Locum tenens is an ideal way to transition from a rigorous full-time schedule to retirement by picking up only the number of hours you feel comfortable working. You can be as selective as you wish to be when deciding when and where you work. What’s more, continuing to practice medicine on a part-time basis will keep your mind and professional skills sharp.

For some, the motivation behind working locums may be the financial goal to supplement a pension (which is typically 60 to 80 percent of your salary at retirement). Some retired doctors don’t have a pension and are relying solely on personal retirement savings. No matter your financial circumstances, bringing in extra income can help you maintain the lifestyle to which you’ve grown accustomed.

By striking the right balance between earning an income and enjoying free time, our retirement-age physicians still have the freedom to travel, pursue hobbies, and spend quality time with family and friends.

Covelo Direct provides concierge-level support to our physicians. Your senior recruiter is standing by to make sure your locum tenens experience meets your unique needs throughout any career transition.

Click here to schedule an introductory phone call with a Covelo Direct senior recruiter to learn more.