Name: Avishai Meyer, M.D.
Title: General surgeon
Education: Sackler School of Medicine, Tel Aviv, Israel. Residency at University of Colorado, Denver and University of Nebraska, Omaha. Fellowship at University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha.
What do you like best about being a locum tenens physician?
I’m a locum tenens physician on weekends currently in Pierre, S.D. I like the ability to interact with and provide medical care to a rural population in need. Also, it enables me to see what it’s like in the real world of a surgeon. As a fellow at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, I am sheltered from the burden of blame, if you will. Working as a locum tenens physician gives me a taste for what it’s really like to be a doctor and incurring the entire responsibility of the care I am giving. That’s scary but welcome. It’s not just being carried by the attending. I’m doing it myself.
Is there anything you don’t like about it?
It’s sad to be away from my family. I happen to have a 6-week-old child, so not being around is a little upsetting. We also have a 2-and-a-half-year-old, so it’s difficult for my wife. I’m not there to help out. That would be the only complaint I have about it, but that’s my choice.
Why did you choose to practice locum tenens?
I’m making extra money, so I’ll be able to facilitate good things in the near future. Weighing the pros and cons, I thought it was definitely a pro. At this stage of the game, I can only give them weekends. I plan to do this weekend work for a long time.
It’s hard when you’re still in training. You don’t make much money, and you still have student loan debt and those kinds of things. One thing I do have is motivation and the ability to work.
Does the locum tenens company pay for your airfare and lodging while you are away from home?
Yes. My only out-of-pocket is for food and entertainment.