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Part One: Avoiding the Pitfalls of Locum Licensure

Part One: Avoiding the Pitfalls of Locum Licensure

Don’t just take it at face value that a locum tenens provider is cleared to start a new assignment because you are both eager to make it happen. Start dates can be delayed or missed altogether if you don’t anticipate licensure needs and requirements in advance. The boy scouts had it right all along…be prepared to avoid coverage lulls and stress caused by lack of information. The process and constraints between each state varies, so here are some of the main items to keep in mind to set your expectations.

Make sure you have this checklist covered as minimum documentation requirements for licensing:

  • State Application
  • Licensure Fee
  • AMA/AOA Profile

Verifications Needed:

  • State Licenses
  • Work History
  • Medical School and Post Graduate Completion Documents
  • Transcripts from Initial Licensing Exams


Now we’re off to a good start, but not out of the woods yet. Once you’ve received all the items above, keep in mind other factors that may be needed for clearance to start a locum assignment:

Locum Tenens Temporary License
Processing limitations and requirements dependent on the state.

In-Person Interviews with Licensure Board
Mandatory for all physicians in some states.

A standardized computer test used to evaluate already licensed or re-licensing in some states.

Stores the verification of medical training for Foreign Medical Graduates and is required to show most state licensing boards for foreign grads.

DEA Certificate  
In many states, once the state license is issued, the DEA Cert must be active in that state even if the physician will not be prescribing.

Fingerprints and Background Check
Required by many states for temporary licensure.

International Medical Graduates and Rotations
In addition to original transcripts or didactics, many states require “green book” rotations for physicians trained in the Caribbean.

These are just some main requirements to keep in mind. To see a more detailed list, please visit our Locum Licensing Requirements web page where you can also view a basic chart containing temporary license options for each state that offers them.

Arlene Macellaro is the VP of Business Development and Client Relations for All Star Recruiting. She can be reached at AMacellaro@allstarrecruiting.com.

"When I was initially contacted by All Star, I had already been approached by several companies and presented to quite a few opportunities so I didn't think I needed to speak to another firm. What I didn't count on was All Star having another eight positions which other agencies didn't have. Now I'm happily working at one of the options they offered. Thanks!"
- Bal A., M.D.

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