Anonymous #1
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Why don't more doctors just locum? They get to choose their hours and be really selective about it and still earn tonnes??
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Kidface101
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From what I can gather, it seems to be that locuming involves travelling and not setting down roots which is unappealing to some people. Frankly, I would love the idea of not having to stay in one place for so long.
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yaja_jaswal
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Why don't more doctors just locum? They get to choose their hours and be really selective about it and still earn tonnes??
From what I know from my mum, locum agencies have vacancies and can only give you some options but apart from that there isn't much choice. Not to mention you might have to travel longer distances to get there and you might end up working more odd hours. If you have a family then it gets difficult and doctor's would rather work consistently at one surgery where they live.
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Chief Wiggum
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Locuming is reasonably popular with doctors.

Although in the long-term, it means you aren't advancing your career. If people want to become a GP or consultant, then they can't just work as a locum SHO or locum SpR forever.
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nexttime
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Why don't more doctors just locum? They get to choose their hours and be really selective about it and still earn tonnes??
Earnings can be vastly greater yes. Early on in the career actual training can also be paradoxically better than when on a regular training job, as you can choose where you work to a greater extent, and the NHS is so desperate for doctors that you have loads of choice.

But the major downsides are
1) Short term locums - the ones where you hear the highest rates coming from - obviously lack any annual leave, study leave, sick leave, maternity/paternity pay, etc. That makes locum rates seem rather higher than they actually are.
2) Viewing the pay as good is rather a short term view - whilst it may be way higher that what you can earn in training, that pay does increase fairly quickly, and a consultant's regular, daytime pay is almost as high as SHO locum rates.
3) If you are working in lots of different hospitals you know no one and its kind of a sad existence. Although on the other hand, taking a longer term lower paying locum can have the inverse effect
4) No career progression as mentioned. Very few doctors would want to stay at a very junior level, being ordered around by junior registrars, way into their 40s and 50s
5) How long will the current environment last? Sure locum work at the moment is incredibly available and well paying as the NHS is desparate for doctors, but will that be true in 10, 15 years time? Will you start having to commute vast distances, work lots of night shifts, work in places and roles you don't like, etc? Will locum work even exist in its current form - the government is incredibly proud of itself for pressuring hospitals into leaving rota gaps rather than hiring locums. Might it take this even further as the NHS funding crisis deepens?
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