What is a Locum Doctor?
A locum doctor is a healthcare professional who maintains and restores human health by assessing, diagnosing and treating illness and injury. Their role within the medical profession is to provide primary care to patients and, if necessary, to refer them to more specialised healthcare providers.
Doctors’ jobs will often require them to draw on extensive and wide-ranging knowledge, and those in the role may usually choose to specialise in certain diseases, patients or types of treatment.
A doctor’s day will be hugely varied, with no two days the same, as each shift is tailored to their patients. Doctors will examine patients, make a diagnosis and prescribe medicine or recommend treatment. However, they may also be called upon to carry out minor surgery.
Excellent communication skills are a must for those considering a post as a locum doctor, as liaising with patients and colleagues is an integral part of the job. Doctors must have a caring nature and a genuine desire to help people, as well as the ability to put people at ease and win their confidence. Doctors will also need leadership and management skills and the ability to work under pressure and make quick decisions.
Doctors will usually start out at medical school and to get a place, good A-level grades are needed. Graduates will then go on to do a foundation programme (a compulsory two-year training period). Senior House Officer (SHO) and Specialist Registrar (SpR) grades are now combined in the Specialty Registrar (StR) grade, and professionals will take on run-through speciality training after the foundation programme or core training.