Managed Care Information Center
Site Navigation:
E-mail a Friend
FREE E-Mail Newsletters
Subscribe to the leading management newsletters
Health Resources Online
* * *
Health Resources Publishing
* * *
Wellness Junction
* * *
Healthcare Intelligence Network
Contact MCIC

Managed Care Information Center
1913 Atlantic Ave., Suite F4
Manasquan, NJ  08736
(732) 292-1100
fax: (732) 292-1111

Home / News & IndustryManaged Care Insight and Analysis
Updated: July 15, 2008
Staff Care Survey: 77 Percent Of Hospitals Report Using Physician ‘Temps’

Physician "temps" are now used by the majority of hospitals in the U.S., a new survey indicates.

Conducted by Staff Care, a temporary physician staffing company, the survey looked at the use of temp physicians at 730 hospitals and medical groups.

Over three-quarters of those surveyed said their facilities had used temporary physicians within the last 12 months, while 54 percent said their facilities currently are seeking temp physicians. Hospitals and other healthcare organizations typically use temp physicians to fill in when there are gaps in the permanent staff, the survey said.

Temp "doctors are the Lone Rangers of medicine," said Joseph Caldwell, president of Staff Care. "They ride into town, take care of people in need, then they ride off to their next assignment."

According to Caldwell, temp physicians work temporary assignments that can last from a few days up to a year. Some temp physicians may work just one or two temporary assignments a year, while others may work a dozen assignments or more, Caldwell said.

Demand Grows By Over 20%

The survey also tracked which types of doctors are in most demand as temps based on the kind of temporary physicians Staff Care’s clients requested in 2007.

Primary care physicians (i.e., family practitioners, general internists and pediatricians) topped the list of the most requested medical specialties, followed by anesthesia providers, behavioral health professionals, radiologists and surgeons.

In 2007, the number of requests Staff Care received to fill temporary "physician days" increased by over 20 percent over 2006. According to Caldwell, demand for temporary physicians is being driven by a national doctor shortage, which has left gaps in the permanent staffs of many hospitals and medical groups.

Quality of Care

The survey asked hospital and medical group managers to assess the general skill level of temps physicians. Seventy-six percent of those surveyed rated the skill level of temp physicians as either "good" or "excellent," while 22 percent rated their skill level as "adequate." Only two percent of those surveyed rated the skill level of temp physicians as "unsatisfactory."

In the same survey, Staff Care asked over 800 physicians who work as temps about their temporary work experiences. Nineteen percent said they find temporary assignments to be more satisfying than permanent practice, 14 percent find temporary assignments to be less satisfying than permanent practice, while the majority (67 percent) find temporary assignments and permanent practice to be equally satisfying.

Address: Staff Care, 5001 Statesman Dr., Irving, TX 75063: (469) 524-1473,

  This article was taken from:
The Executive Report on Physician Organizations

Free Trial Subscription

Become a Subscriber

    Back to This Week's List of Articles

"Managed Care Weekly Watch"
Subscribe Here



Top | Home

Resource of the Month | Database of MCOs | Publications | News & Industry | Surveys & Research | Free Products | Advertising Arena | Inside MCIC | Managed Care Archives | | For Subscribers | Customer Service

©2008 The Managed Care Information Center