What are the advantages of long term locum placements?

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Although most locum work will consist of shorter to medium length placements, you may occasionally be called upon for a long term post, that could last between six months to one year. If you usually pick up ad-hoc days, or work one to three months at one hospital, trying a lengthier job could provide you with some different opportunities to get your teeth stuck in to as well as give you some new locum experiences. The majority of long term placements will include an end date, for example if you were covering maternity leave, however some may be on a rolling basis, say if you were covering an indefinite sickness leave.

Wondering whether to say yes to a longer locum placement? Why not take a look at our pros and cons to see whether you could make the most of a yearly post…


  • You can develop relationships with your patients and have a greater opportunity for continuity of care
  • Better stability of income as you are in more regular employment
  • Enjoy regular working environment and hours
  • The references you gain will be based on long term relationships so are more likely to be genuine and personal
  • The post could lead to a permanent position
  • It is easier to collect the information you need for appraisal as your hospital will know you well


  • Sometimes the distinct between being a locum doctor and a regular staff doctor can be blurred being their is ambiguity on the tasks you are expected to help out with – make sure you have a defined role to dictate your workload
  • More pressure to ‘muck in’ and work outside of your hours or responsibilities, which could impact your home / work balance
  • Less flexibility in general
  • Limits your networking opportunities
  • You may need to re-establish yourself as a locum doctor after your placement has finished since it would have been a while since you last did new locum work


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