After many years in private practice, Steven Weissfeld, MD, began to grow weary of increasing hours and declining reimbursements. “Year after year, I was working more hours and taking more calls, while simultaneously having my salary cut back,” Dr. Weissfeld recalls.
So, in 2011, the orthopedic surgeon decided to switch to locum tenens practice. “I have gained so many benefits since starting my locum tenens career,” he says. “I am especially happy to be in control of my own schedule. On average, I work two to three weeks each month, but can change that at any time to suit my needs.”
Dr. Weissfeld also relishes the change of scenery locum tenens opportunities afford. “I am never bogged down in one place for too long. Some places can be very busy; others have a slower pace. I enjoy the mix,” he says. “I also enjoy working with new people and learning different systems, which has helped me to become more adaptable. “And adaptability is certainly an asset in this field,” Dr. Weissfeld continues. “Sometimes, in private practice, physicians get used to doing things the same way over and over. So acclimating to new colleagues and systems may be a challenge at first. But I find the exposure helps to keep things interesting. I also discovered some better ways of doing things.”
Not only is Dr. Weissfeld pleased with what he’s gained through working locum tenens, he’s also equally happy with what he has been able to let go. “I have much less work-related stress since leaving private practice,” he says. “I no longer have to spend time on tasks like hiring employees or working on pension plans. And I have virtually no overhead. Almost all my expenses are covered or reimbursed by Weatherby Healthcare.”
Finding contracts has also been worry-free, according to Dr. Weissfeld. “I have been working with Weatherby for the last two years, and the service has been exemplary. My consultant, Greg Hearn, consistently finds opportunities that suit me well and checks up on me while I’m at a new facility. We have a good rapport and I feel confident he is looking out for my best interests,” says Dr. Weissfeld. “This excellent service extends to my travel, as well,” he adds. “I rarely get stressed en route to a new location because my arrangements are so well managed. Even if a flight is delayed or canceled, I know I will be taken care of and eventually get to where I need to go,” Dr. Weissfeld says. “And, of course, the more I travel, the more routine it becomes. Plus, frequent travelers get certain perks from the airlines, which are a nice benefit.”
In the three years since leaving private practice, Dr. Weissfeld has gained a fresh outlook on his career. “The advantages of working locum tenens are vast. Even retirement will be easier because I won’t have to worry about selling a practice and all the headaches that come with it. Now, I control my own schedule, travel to new places, and treat patients. Taking locum tenens assignments gives me all of the benefits, none of the drawbacks.”
If you are interested in exploring the benefits locum tenens practice has to offer, check out Weatherby Healthcare’s locum tenens opportunities throughout the country.