The Rewards of Locum Tenens Physician Jobs with the VA
If you are a physician who is eager to truly make a difference providing healthcare services to the people who have sacrificed to serve our country, then a VA locum tenens job could be just the opportunity you’ve been seeking.
From flexible schedules and lighter patient loads to the ability to give top-tier care to those who have served our country, there are many reasons to take a physician job with the VA health system.
Just take it from the experience of Dr. Rajesh, an established New Orleans-based physician who has worked as a doctor with the U.S. Federal Government for 20 years, for both the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the State Department, where he was assigned to provide healthcare to various embassies and diplomats all over the
Dr. Rajesh currently works on and off (part retired and part practicing) as a locum practitioner for Staff Care at various VA facilities and other medical centers doing general internal medicine patient care.
"Staff Care places me as a locum and I move wherever they send me," Dr. Rajesh said.
Staff Care specializes in placing physicians and advanced practitioners in locum tenens opportunities in a variety of clinical settings, including VA Medical Centers and other government facilities. The agency has long-standing relationships and contracts at many of these healthcare clinics throughout the country.
Locums help where physicians are needed most
Dr. Rajesh’s next VA locum tenens job assignment will take him to a community-based outpatient facility in Virginia for six weeks. “The veterans here are a little bit far from the bigger hospital so they come to this small clinic and this clinic provides primary care. I believe I will be the sole provider there taking care of veterans -- probably about 12 scheduled patients per day and a couple of walk-ins.”
The VA provides a critical resource for veterans who may not have immediate access to care, especially those in more rural communities such as where Dr. Rajesh is heading next.
VA locum tenens jobs also tend to have lighter patient loads, allowing providers more time to spend patients, getting to know them and their unique health care needs. Their “patient-aligned care teams (PACTs) are designed to deliver patient-centered, personalized care,” according to the Veterans Affairs website.
Loan repayment & other financial incentives
There are other benefits to full-time VA jobs, one major incentive being the VA’s Education and Debt Reduction Program that allows physicians to choose a healthcare career providing top-notch care to America’s veterans and receive student loan repayment of up to $200,000. The VA also has a Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) where employees in certain occupations may be eligible to receive up to $10,000 per year (with a lifetime maximum of $60,000) to help repay student loans.
Locum tenens jobs with the VA provide competitive pay and flexibility, and for physicians who have already worked in a government setting, a locum contract job can take some of the complications out of annuities and retirement payments since locums are independent contractors that are being compensated by a third party.
Choosing a reputable locum tenens staffing company
Selecting a locum tenens company that is well-known and respected in the industry is one of the most important factors in a successful VA locum tenens job.
“The experience has been great,” Dr. Rajesh said. “The Staff Care recruiter I talked to gave me a lot of good information in the first conversation, that they are one of the biggest and have most of the outpatient veteran's clinics with them -- so all of that information helped me and they gave me what I needed. I’ve since recommended Staff Care to other people.”
Staff Care has hundreds of locum tenens jobs across the U.S., in a variety of work settings.