It’s National CRNA Week! To celebrate our exceptional certified registered nurse anesthetists and to share how well the locum lifestyle can fit CRNAs and other advanced practice professionals, we’ve interviewed one of our own: Chris C., CRNA.
Chris, who became a CRNA two years ago, brings a fresh perspective, as he has chosen locums early in his CRNA career path. But he’s not alone. Chris has joined the rapidly expanding numbers of younger healthcare professionals who are drawn to the independence and flexibility of locum tenens.
Locum Tenens Evolves with Your Career Goals
Historically, locum tenens assignments served as a way for seasoned healthcare professionals to return to work after retirement. But this has changed. Now providers at all stages of their careers work locums for a variety of reasons. Some want to pick up extra hours, to try out life in a new city before settling down, or to work only part time so they can spend more time with family. Others want to gain specialized experience, care for underserved patient populations, or see how different facilities operate across the nation. Many are drawn to the freedom and independence inherent in locums or to the ability to earn more so they can pay off education loans, buy a home, or build a nest egg.
For Chris, the original appeal of locums was the autonomy and flexibility of the arrangement. He says he also appreciates having the ability to increase his skill set while enjoying excellent compensation.
Chris, who is currently on locums assignment has been a CRNA since 2018. After earning his bachelor’s in critical care nursing at The University of Akron and completing his master’s as a nurse anesthetist at Middle Tennessee School of Anesthesia, Chris worked as a critical care and operating room nurse for six years at St. Rita’s Medical Center.
Along with the shift in his path from RN to CRNA, Chris brought a new approach to his career. He says, “Now I’m able to make my own schedule. I can work in multiple locations.” He continues, “With locums, you can travel. You have the opportunity to live and work in the city of your choice. And…you can specialize if desired.”
As for any reservations providers might have about choosing locum tenens over permanent positions, Chris says, “There is a perception of a monumental shift when you start working locums. I think this is a misconception. The fears of making the switch are often unfounded. I have loved working locums.” Chris views locums as “a vehicle that gives you control of your current job and your future.”
“It's like dating before getting married,” says Jennifer Williamson, the staffing consultant who works with Chris and facilities nationwide to find the perfect match. “You're not in a long-term commitment, therefore you're able to see if you like the facility and the area. The experience also allows you to travel and see how different hospitals run and try out different types of cases all the while getting to experience a different atmosphere and environment.”
Take the Next Step in Your Locum Tenens Assignment
When asked what advice he would convey to a friend or colleague considering locums, Chris said, “Find a great recruiter. Your recruiter is your biggest ally. A good recruiter is crucial.”
At Cross Country Locums, we agree. We know that the right recruiter makes all the difference in your locums experience, and that’s why we have a team of recruiters who are enthusiastic, informed, connected, and eager to find the ideal locum tenens assignment for you.