Finding work as a locum doctor

The Health and Social Care Information Centre reported that on average the number of locum doctors working for the National Health Service (NHS) in 2014 was over 2,350 per month.

Along with the fact that recruitment agencies such as ID Medical provide the NHS with more than 3 million hours of work every year there appears to be great demand for locum workers.

For more information on how to secure your next contract, read our guide to finding work as a locum doctor. You may also find our becoming a locum doctor and accountants for locums pages useful.

Working as a locum for the NHS

The NHS jobs website advertises approximately 20,000 vacancies every month, many of which are for locum doctors. This is a great first point of call when looking for your next role.

Registering with NHS Professionals (NHSP) is also a great place to start if you would like to work as a locum doctor for the NHS. NHSP is owned by the Secretary State for Health and aims at reducing the amount that is spent by the NHS on expensive agency staff by providing a bank of temporary locum staff to use as an alternative when needed.

Through the NHSP website you can register as a locum doctor to work for the hospital trusts that are convenient to you. 

Working as a locum for private hospitals

There are no specific regulations required to locum for a private hospital, although specialised doctors and consultants tend to be more in demand. To find locum work in private hospitals there are many recruitment agencies which advertise positions, such as:

  • Coyle Medical, who provide roles in private hospitals for qualified professionals that have worked in UK hospitals for at least two years. Positions are available at all levels from Junior House Officers to Consultants.
  • Merco have vacancies for short and long term positions in private hospitals. The majority of the roles available are for Resident Medical Officers, Trauma Doctors and Consultants. 
  • MedicsPro are a medical recruitment agency that supplies locum doctors, nurses and radiographers to private healthcare providers across the UK, as well as to the NHS.

Finding work as a locum GP

The Information Services Division Scotland found that 89% of the practices surveyed had used the services of a locum or seasonal General Practitioner between January 2012 and January 2013.

There are substantial opportunities for locum GPs to fill in for doctors on sick leave or on longer contracts to cover sabbatical or maternity leave. 

Naturally, if you would like to work as a locum GP the best place to start is by contacting local medical centres and doctors’ surgeries to let them know that you are available. Specialist job boards such as GP Jobs may also be a useful place to begin.

Another way to find work as a locum GP would be to attend sessional GP groups for networking opportunities. These groups are usually regional and could also provide advice and information on industry knowledge and the latest industry news.

Specialist recruitment agencies

For help finding locum work in your area you may find the specialist recruitment agencies below useful:

  • Medacs Healthcare has over 20 years’ experience providing temporary and locum medical staff. They specialise in all types of medical recruitment, from NHS positions to prison healthcare.
  • Agenda Recruitment Medical Locums specialise in placing skilled medical professionals in both public and private locum healthcare positions across the UK.
  • ID Medical was established in 2002 and provides medical locum staff to NHS and private sectors throughout the UK.
  • A&E Agency specialise in recruitment for Accident and Emergency departments in NHS, prison services and private sector establishments nationwide.

If you are considering becoming a locum doctor you may find the following pages useful:

If you have any questions about going Limited or working as a locum doctor then our New Client Services team will be happy to help you. Please get in contact on 01442 275789 or email lisa.wood@sjdaccountancy.com.

SJD Accountancy

SJD Accountancy are the UK's largest specialist provider of fixed fee, Limited company accountancy services to contractors; we've been acting for contractors across the UK since 1992 and have more than 15,000 clients.

We are the only national specialist firm of contractor accountants with offices nationwide. SJD Accountancy has more qualified staff than any other firm in our market with qualifications from the following major tax and accountancy bodies - ATT, AAT, CTA, ACCA, CA, ACA and FCCA.

  • Unlimited face to face meetings. This is a unique service only SJD Accountancy offers - unlimited face to face meetings across the UK - tax is complicated and sometimes only a meeting will do.
  • UK's Largest contractor accountants with more qualified staff. No call centres, no outsourcing, no automated call handling. Simply telephone, email or meet your own dedicated accountant face to face.
  • Money back service guarantee. All your Emails received by 4pm on any normal working day will be answered the same day. Should it be necessary to leave a telephone message it will be answered same day/following day latest or we will make a full refund of that months fee.
  • Outstanding reputation. We have won more awards for customer service and accountancy excellence than any other firm in our market, including: Best Accountant for Contractors, Accountant of the Year and Best Professional Service Team to name just a few.
  • All inclusive low cost fixed fee accountancy package which includes completion of accounts*, payroll bureau, dividends and corporation tax computations, personal taxation, free bookkeeping software, your own dedicated accountant* and all company returns for a fixed fee starting from £120 plus VAT per month. Check our packages for more detail.

If you have any questions about contracting or would like any further advice please call our new client services helpdesk on 01442 275789 or email: janice@sjdaccountancy.com. Our new client services helpdesk is open Monday to Friday (8am to 6pm).

Appoint SJD Accountancy and never worry about your tax or accountancy affairs again.

Form your own Limited company with SJD - our same day online company formation service includes company bank account set up, VAT/PAYE registration and advice on optimum share structure. 

You may also find the following pages, guides and case studies useful:

*If you would like us to complete your company year end accounts we simply ask that you have been a client of SJD for one year or have made 12 monthly payments. All accountants are part or fully qualified.