Skill and Presence are left in the things that make a good locum. First... Can you believe I started this little site one month ago? If I can do all this in a month, imagine what the future holds. Well, honestly that means we are so very close to going back to work. It seems like I was just at work. Tomorrow, marks another travel day in the life. We will be flying back to Massachusetts from Kansas. If anyone is in Worcester or wants to say hi in worcester we might be able to do the evening on the 30th of June. I'll open it up on the FB page.
I usually say something like... say what you mean and mean what you say. This would be in the same category. Know your skills and do them well. You have to be able to do the cases the facility needs you to do. So for each assignement I ask what typical cases are and that I'll be set in the rotation to do all the cases. I love my A-lines and Central lines. I love Pediatrics and neonatal cases. I enjoy a good heart and major vascular case. Neurosurgery for a tumor or a neuromonitoring back. C-section for breach twins or an eclamptic that needs a stat section are all in a days work. It's not uncommon for me to go in and find my schedule changed to something else because they added XYZ case. It goes back to being flexible and they know I am. I have the flexibility because they know that in my pocket of skills and case-load I have the ability to do what they need. They can take me out of the Total joint and put me into the emergency add-on trach. They also know that I'll ask questions or make sure things are ok in the event something isn't right. I'm not a cowboy and I'm not going to try and do what I'm not comfortable with.
You have to develop the skills and types of cases over your career. If you are a new grad, you're untested and an unknown quantity thus most places ask you to get a minimum amount of experience in a facility and I would say get a year or two at a semi-independent site. Completely independent sites will normally do more bread and butter and dominating supervised practice can be so crippling to a career that it'd be better to go locum as a new grad. So, I can't say what you should definitely be doing. You should be capable of blocks, and basic a-lines and IV's, general cases, spinals and epidurals. If not, when you start locums ... state this upfront to your recruiter or if independently contracting, you need to let them know. Then you might want to learn. If it is a long term assignment they may take a couple days to help you learn.
Develop your skills and continue to give yourself variety so you can stay marketable.