Locum tenens physicians and advanced practice providers fill a critical need, and their value has never been more evident than it is today. The COVID-19 pandemic served to underscore the importance of having a skilled, adaptable healthcare workforce that can be deployed wherever demand is the greatest. And a growing physician shortage means many facilities — especially those in underserved and rural areas — are unable to provide adequate coverage without the support of locum tenens physicians to fill in the gaps.
That’s why Weatherby Healthcare created the Locum Tenens of the Year award, an annual opportunity to recognize physicians who are:
- Passionate about locum tenens
- Provide the highest quality of care
- Dedicated to serving the communities where they work and live
When announcing this year’s winners, Weatherby Healthcare President Luke Woodyard said, “Demand for locum tenens physicians is higher than ever and our doctors are rising to the challenge. Each of this year’s honorees has gone above and beyond to provide compassionate care and dedicated service in their respective specialties. We’re proud to have them as part of the Weatherby family.”
2022 Locum Tenens of the Year award winners
Dr. Chinenyenwa Onyemaechi, Psychiatry
Chinenyenwa Onyemaechi, MD, is double board-certified in general and forensic psychiatry. A native of Maryland, she has worked several locums assignments across six states (and counting). She has found that locums not only allows her time to travel and to explore different interests, but also to express one of her core values: self-growth. In her time as a locum, she has completed her goal of visiting all 50 states, taught herself Spanish, and served as a volunteer psychiatrist working with refugees from Afghanistan during Operation Allies Welcome. Passionate about improving mental health literacy, she currently sits on the Board of Directors of the Maryland Foundation for Psychiatry, Inc., a nonprofit organization that seeks to dismantle the stigma toward mental illness through public outreach. When not working or traveling, Dr. Onyemaechi enjoys running, hiking, good food, reading, Michigan football (Go Blue!), and hanging out with her maltipoo, Archie.
Dr. Marc Quinn, Critical Care Medicine
Marc Quinn, MD, is a board-certified pulmonary/critical care physician. A Bay Area native, Dr. Quinn received his Doctor of Medicine from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School and completed his internal medicine residency at Parkland Memorial Hospital, where he found his passion was taking care of the most critically ill patients. He completed a pulmonary critical care fellowship at UT Southwestern and practiced in Richardson, TX, for over 20 years, where he was consistently named one of Dallas Magazine’s “Top Doctors.” During the height of the COVID pandemic, Dr. Quinn decided to become a full-time locum physician in order to travel and help underserved communities nationwide. He worked in some of the most hard-hit areas including Georgia, Indiana, Oregon, South Carolina, and Texas. As a locum physician, Dr. Quinn is never afraid to take on the toughest assignments and quickly integrates himself into every hospital where he is placed.
Dr. Jeanine Ricca, OB/GYN
Inspired at a young age by her pediatrician, Jeanine Ricca, DO, says she’s wanted to be a physician since she was five. She began her medical career as a PA while starting a family with her husband who was in the military. When he was stationed in Japan, she stayed stateside and raised their three children while working and going to medical school. It wasn’t until her rotations that she discovered her passion for obstetrics and gynecology. She is an advocate for her patients and women’s health, making it a point to investigate even minor aches, knowing it could be masking something that’s easily overlooked. Since joining Weatherby in January 2021, Dr. Ricca has become an enthusiastic promoter of the locum tenens lifestyle. She appreciates being respected for her skills and enjoys going to underserved areas other doctors avoid. She says she loves what she does, and she loves fighting for women’s health.
Dr. Ala Shiyab, General Surgery
Ala Shiyab, MD, realized he wanted to become a surgeon at a young age when he noticed he loved doing things with his hands. As a child, he would build from scratch everything from Lego sets to motor vehicles. He knew one thing: if he could put his mind to it, he could see it through. His choice to pursue medicine as a career was a combination of the technical aspect of using his hands along with his compassion. He believes in having empathy for people from all walks of life. Simply said, he wanted to use his skills to help impact people’s lives in a positive way. Dr. Shiyab has been practicing medicine for over 25 years and worked locum tenens since 2017, impacting thousands of patients’ lives. In his downtime, he enjoys working out, watching UFC, and traveling.
Locum tenens in 2022
Over the past year, locum tenens physicians have made a big impact in the U.S. (data from Locumstory.com):
- 14 million patients have received care from locum tenens physicians and APPs
- More than half a million total days have been worked by locum tenens providers
- Nearly 10,000 physicians and advanced practice providers have worked locum tenens
About Weatherby Healthcare
Weatherby Healthcare is a leader in locum tenens staffing for physicians, physician assistants/associates, and nurse practitioners. Established in 1995, the company is the recipient of numerous industry and workplace awards and is part of the CHG Healthcare family of brands, which has ranked among Fortune magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” for more than 10 years.