At NEXTLocums, our team extremely values the feedback and advice provided by the locum tenens we work with. We recently had the chance to sit down with Dr. Chunyen Liu, who is currently fulfilling a locums position with the Indian Health Service (IHS) in New Mexico. Dr. Liu was kind enough to share with us his insights around being a locums provider and working at an IHS facility.
NEXTLocums: Why did you choose an IHS position?
Liu: My residency was with the military, so I know the way the government facilities operate. I chose IHS because there was an opportunity in the ER. Right now, I’m using locums positions to explore what type of government healthcare job I like the best. My goal is to take a permanent position when I find a facility I like.
NEXTLocums: What do you enjoy about locums tenens work?
Liu: I like that you can travel and see the states. You can work multiple places and see what you like. I am getting to know other places, making connections, and getting to know other EMRs. Its about the experience.
NEXTLocums: What advice would you give other doctors who are ready to finish residency about locums work?
Liu: Schedule some time to travel between jobs. You are overworked in residency, often working 80 hours a week. This is your chance to take some time to travel, and working 40 hours a week as a locum tenens is a nice break.
NEXTLocums: Why do you like working with Travis, your NEXTLocums recruiter?
Liu: Travis is always upfront. There are some locums agencies out there who you can’t say that about. For me, it was more about how I feel working with someone. I hope to build a long-term relationship with an organization.
NEXTLocums: What is IHS training like?
Liu: There is extensive online training. Video modules, tests—very similar to other government positions, but you do get paid for it, so that is quite nice.
NEXTLocums: What have you learned so far working for IHS?
Liu: Its quite a bit of a culture shock, and you have to approach things differently when you speak with your patients. Their medical competency isn’t high, and oftentimes you are using new terminology for them, so you have to explain in plain terms so they understand their diagnosis or treatment.
Please join us in thanking Dr. Liu for his valuable insights into IHS and locums life.
If you believe locum tenens might be right for your next move, or you’d like to learn more about positions with the IHS, contact a NEXTLocums recruiter today.