Staff Care fulltime dentist with patient
Specialty Spotlights May 2, 2022

By Jennifer Larson, contributor

The Benefits of Full-time Locum Dentist Jobs

Dentists, listen up: it’s a great time to consider taking a locum tenens dentistry job, which can involve either part-time contracts or full-time, temporary positions.

In fact, if you’ve been thinking about a new permanent practice opportunity, consider the benefits of taking a long-term locums position instead—especially if you prefer flexible work options and taking care of patients without the administrative hassles. You can also travel and explore new locations with someone else covering the bill.

Long-term locum dentist jobs typically involve signing a contract to provide full-time dental care for two or three months. Some positions can last as long as six months.

Many practices hire locum dentists to fill a vacancy while they continue to search for a full-time, permanent dentist. And right now, they’re especially eager to find dentists to fill that role. Could you be one of them?

Full-time, long-term jobs for locum dentists

You may be pleasantly surprised to learn that numerous states have multiple long-term job openings for locum dentists. In fact, vacancies are at an all-time high in many places for positions that range between two and six months, said Nicole R., director of recruiting for Staff Care.

The demand is especially strong in the Midwest in states like Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Indiana. But just a little further east in Pennsylvania and Virginia, and south into Georgia and Alabama, opportunities are plentiful, too.

Many (but not all) of the long-term locum dentist positions are with dental service organizations, or DSOs, which have practices all over the country. That’s not surprising, given that about one-fifth of all dental practices in the United States are members of a DSO, and that number is expected to grow.

And if you prefer a particular type of area, you’re in luck. Urban, suburban, rural—take your pick. “The demand is everywhere,” says Nicole.

Benefits for locum dentists

In addition to flexible work options and travel opportunities, one of the top benefits of taking a locum tenens assignment is the excellent paycheck. Staff Care also pays locum dentists for travel-related costs while on assignment, including lodging, and will cover the cost of your comprehensive malpractice insurance.

Interested in a locum dentist job in a particular state, but you don’t have a license to practice in that state? No problem. Staff Care’s team can help you obtain your new state license, and will even cover the licensing fees for you. They will also assist with your assignment credentialing details.

Possibility of locum-to-perm positions

You may love the prospect of taking a series of long-term locum dentistry contracts interspersed with some well-deserved vacation time. But at some point, you might want to settle down again.

In that instance, it may interest you to know that some employers are open to locum-to-perm opportunities. That is, they’ll sign you to a long-term locum contract, but could consider you as a candidate for a permanent position if it is a good fit for both parties. They may approach you to discuss the possibility after you complete your locum contract. (Don’t worry, you can always decline if you prefer to stick with the locum lifestyle.)

You can even talk to your recruiter about seeking out employers that are interested in this type of arrangement.

Other opportunities

If you are not currently in the market for a long-term, full-time locum dentistry opportunity, there are still other possibilities available to you.

“If long-term isn’t what you’re looking for, we also have plenty of short-term contracts to choose from,” said Nicole. That could include a contract that might only last for two days or one that might last for several weeks, either part-time or full-time.

The bottom line: if you’re willing to consider a variety of locations and contract lengths, the world is pretty much your oyster right now, professionally speaking.

“If you are flexible, there will be so many more opportunities to work,” said Nicole.

Staff Care has a variety of locum dentist jobs across the U.S., and a team of experts who can guide you through the placement process.

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