Locums for a Small World Blog

Global Medical's top 10 states for locum tenens doctors to explore in 2016 (pt. 1)

Posted by Everett Fitch

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Every state has all new sights to see and all sorts of new things to do. For instance, in this top ten lineup you have two states that share a massive national park where you can almost feel the earth bubbling underneath. Another on this list has world-famous ski resorts where you can catch fresh snow and maybe even rub elbows with celebrities. And another is home to a city built on chocolate (not literally), and it's appropriately referred to as "The Sweetest Place on Earth." 

Every bit of countryside in these states, too, if you drive far enough, has new scenery and new smells, new sounds and new sights all set to liven up your senses - rarin' to give you a jolt. That’s a good thing, too. You give up a little bit of yourself to be a big bit of everything else in these wide open spaces - just in a different way than in the city. You’re a little less on high alert and a little more present. You're more aware of being yourself, unabashedly. It’s a reset and everyone deserves one once in a while.



You're sure to find plenty of both city and countryside in the following top 10. You're also sure to find lots of physician opportunities within these states. This new year, take time to experience somewhere new. Here's part one of our two-part top 10 list. 

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#10: Montana - Big sky, big adventure and craft beer

Montana isn't a place you visit; Montana is a place you experience. It’s a dream of a state where alpine peaks meet rolling prairies and an orb-stretching sky swallows you whole. The Great Plains (America’s version of the Serengeti) start here. Yellowstone and Glacier stretch their mountainous backs across boundaries. And 16 ski areas and 54 state parks keep the tourists coming.

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This state is about big adventure more than anything: the American West at its finest. The kind of place Ken Burns could live out his fantasies. It’s not all grit and galloping horses; it has a chic side, too. Spend an entire day in Billings, Missoula or Great Falls and come out a more sophisticated citizen of the world. Museums, art galleries, festivals, farmers’ markets, wineries, rustic restaurants…these cities have all that. Plus, the entire state ranks high for breweries per capita (over 40 and growing). Stop in for big sky and a brew. You won’t regret it.

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#9: Kentucky - It ain't all bluegrass and horses here

Think Kentucky and we bet a lot of things come to mind: bluegrass music, bourbon, baseball bats and barbecue to name a few. (Don't forget the famous Derby, either.) This state is most certainly a travel heavyweight because of all that, but it ain't all bluegrass and thoroughbreds here. For instance, Abraham Lincoln’s tales are told on historic trails and Muhammad Ali’s fights are emblazoned in eponymous museums. Plus, there's a whole countryside ripe for exploring.

It’s not hard to paint a pretty picture of Kentucky. It’s got four beautiful seasons awash with color, and a myriad of caves, lakes, and mountains. You're a short drive away from everything. Come hike otherworldly sandstone formations in the Garden of the Gods; walk Louisville's version of a pub crawl on the "Urban Bourbon" trail; and spelunk in the state's famed cave country. Yep, the state houses the best of the untamed outdoors (including, but not limited to: Daniel Boone National Forest and Cumberland Falls State Park).

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Some more things to do: you can follow in the paths of bootleggers and moonshiners on driving tours. You can plan an itinerary of eerie graveyards and forgotten wards or take to dark jazz clubs, historic neighborhoods or all of those thin, wiggly lines on the map that represent the rural byways of this adventure land. Or just content yourself with sitting on a porch and sipping mint juleps. Believe us, you've stumbled upon a veritable goldmine in Kentucky. The locals are proud to call this land home; when you get here you'll see why.

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#8: Colorado - Rocky Mountain adventure underneath 300 days of sunshine


If the rest of the country knew how legendary every last spoil is in Colorado, everyone would move here. This state boasts 300 or so annual days of sunshine, famous landmarks galore, the too-tall mountains of Rocky Mountain National Park and more culture in every last city than the local farmer's butter.

Take Denver (and surrounds) for example. Its live-music, couture-clothing-shop, art-gallery and nightlife scene are all super-sized. Not to mention there's top-notch food and brew on every corner. All the above and more makes the Mile High City's downtown atmosphere second to none.

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If you want to get away from the hustle, that's easily done. Head two hours or so west to Vail and you'll be on America's longest ski run. Go a little farther southwest to Aspen and you'll get more than powder. You'll get a mountain town filled with music festivals, plus an interesting mishmash of Hollywood elite and tough cowboys piling in and out, rubbing elbows at cafes and in hot tubs.

Camp out in Colorado Springs for a while and frequent the famous Garden of the Gods park (not to be confused with Kentucky's park of the same name). Or take a little road trip to Pikes Peak and day-hike this Rocky Mountain "fourteener." More national parks and wondrous ski towns make up the rest of the state for some of the best adventuring, relaxing, skiing and hiking in the country. We know you've been itching for a reason to head to the Rocky Mountain State. Who could blame you? Plan your city getaway or mountain escape to Colorado today.

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#7: Idaho - Adventure was born here


Have a real-deal Western experience in Idaho. How? Easy. This state gives you pure nature (Sawtooth National Forest); it feeds your mind with local art and culture (The Basque Block); and most of all it brings you outdoor adventure (Sun Valley Resort)—no matter which way you turn.

Come to think of it, adventure was born in Idaho. Pioneers, mountain men and fur traders journeyed on the famed Oregon Trail here. And today, outdoorsmen carve iceholes and slopes on endless turquoise-blue lakes and on over 80 ski runs in the Yellowstone Teton Territory. And the rest of us enjoy the bubbling hot springs, legendary caves, ancient volcanoes, melted glaciers and endless backcountry that complete the Gem State (aptly named for its abundance of natural resources).

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Sure, we could go on about all the lakes, forests and mountains that make up Idaho but all the adjectives in the world wouldn't give them due justice and it would only take time away from you learning about all the opportunities to work here. Don’t wait. Come enjoy the scenic byways (Northwest Passage) and resort towns (Coeur d'Alene), plus every other slice of paradise Idaho has to offer.

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#6: Pennsylvania - From Steel City to the City of Brotherly Love, Pennsylvania is alive


Those of you who haven't had the opportunity to explore the lively world of Pennsylvania, that's unfortunate. It's East Coast living at its finest. The food's phenomenal. The music and art scenes are expanding like crazy. And the cities are as historic and raucous as it gets.

Take Philadelphia for example. For all its nation-birthing prowess, there's more to the City of Brotherly Love than Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. It’s a city that just emanates good times. Stop by the Fringe Arts Festival for some drama; head to a Phillies game for some fun; then take a restaurant tour along famous East Passyunk Avenue for some fare.

Northcentral Pennsylvania is just as beautiful only a bit more sprawling. There are parts throughout the Wilds (as this region is otherwise known) that look exactly like old black-and-white photographs. White pines and oaks stand tall in Cook Forest. Stars flit and sparkle like nowhere else in Cherry Springs State Park. And local pubs like Straub Brewery pour all-natural blends that have little changed in over 100 years.

Just west of the Wilds is the Great Lakes Region. Google this portion and you're in for a sight. Shipping ports and grand architecture will make up most of the images you'll see. The rest will be breathtaking shots of the Erie National Wildlife Refuge and stunning pictures of the lighthouses at Presque Isle State Park.

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Head south and you’re in Pittsburgh (voted "Top Ten Most Beautiful Places in America” by USA Weekend). During antebellum years you might've encountered local residents helping slaves escape the South via the Underground Railroad. Back east in Dutch Country the landscape will make your jaw drop. This region is home to Hershey which has two of our favorite things: rollercoasters and chocolate. It’s also home to famous shoofly pie (irresistibly sweet molasses pie), true-blue farmers’ markets, the Civil War Museum, and Hunters Valley Wineries.

Pennsylvania is truly a land alive. It's a place where Colonial and Victorian buildings scrape the sky; pink sunsets happen every day; vineyards and classic bed-and-breakfasts dot the landscape; and mighty blue rivers massage vast green valleys.

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Be sure to read part two of our Top 10 states for locum tenens doctors to explore in 2016 list. Also, feel free to see what opportunities are available now.


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Topics: Colorado, United States, Montana, Kentucky, Top 10 States 2016, Idaho, Pennsylvania

Why locum in Colorado? It's no great mystery.

Posted by Saralynn White

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The Colorado Rocky Mountain high. If you’re into skiing, hiking, biking, birding, hunting, campingyou name itthere’s no better place to connect with your inner 'mountain man' than in this beautiful state. The Rockies (and what lies beyond them) simply offer too much to keep any outdoor fanatic away.

The air is thinner here. More than 54 mountain peaks reach 14,000 feet, but it’s not all uphill. Come down from the snowcapped summits and you’ll discover places like Boulder and Golden, Rainbow Curve and Roaring River. Slip a little further off the beaten path and you’ll find a place that’ll make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up.

Welcome to Estes Park, a village surrounded by nationally protected lands. Listen the whisper of aspen leaves. Take in the breathtaking scenery. Oh, and enjoy your stay at the Stanley Hotel.

A throwback to opulent times, the Georgian-style hotel sparked the attention of Easterners heading to the frontier over a century ago. The Stanley’s guest ledger boasts names like Teddy Roosevelt, the “Unsinkable” Molly Brown and Emperor Akihito of Japan. In 1976, the hotel hosted Stephen King and the rest, as they say, is history.

After spending one night in the now-famous room #217 (featured prominently in the 1977 movie), King was inspired to pen his page-turner, The Shining. Skim its pages, then buy a ticket to the hotel's Ghost Tour and you’ll be you questioning just how much of King’s book is fiction.

The Stanley sits on a sprawling 160 acres that boasts a golf course, concert hall, spa and more. Unlike the “Overlook Hotel” depicted in the onscreen adaptation of King’s thriller, the Stanley is open year round and has been restored to the incredible grandeur deserving of its place on the National Register of Historic Places.

All play and no work? Jack’s no dull boy here. Step outside and soaring crags are on the A-list for rock and ice climbers; mountain biking and horseback trails forge into the forests and meadows; and snowshoeing and ski trails crisscross the landscape. Leave australia skii jumper 123rfyour binoculars in the room, too. Wildlife watching here is as simple as looking over your shoulder. Elk, big-horn sheep, and foxes roam freely, foraging in the open meadows and dense thickets. On occasion, Elk herds mosey through town and snarl local traffic.

Colorado’s signature, fluffy snow is on the ground now. Locals are gearing up for another winter in the Rockies. And as luck would have it, locum tenens opportunities are aplenty here.  

 

Topics: Rocky Mountains, Colorado, Estes Park, The Stanley Hotel, Locum Tenens, United States

'Tis the season for tailgating

Posted by Jesse Black

Ahh, September, the most wonderful time of the year. Cool breezes and changing leaves signal the start of autumn while caravans of SUVs haul the kiddies off to school, much to the delight of parents everywhere. Weekends devoted to raking endless piles of leaves are interrupted by high-fives and belly-bumps as the clock is reset for America’s favorite past time – and we’re not talking about baseball.

College football is in its second week and fans are anxiously watching as teams shake off the cobwebs of summer in pursuit of a division championship or a bowl bid. More exciting than the play on the field, however, is the action in the parking lot before kick-off. Tailgaters everywhere have dusted off their grills, cleaned out their ice bins and stocked up on bratwurst in anticipation of another great tailgating year.

ESPN’s Road Warrior counted down the best places to tailgate for the 2010-2011 college football season and some of the best places to don your team’s jersey and down a few cold ones, it just so happens, are also some great places to locum. So break out your lawn chair and hang out your shingle for football season.

The first stop on our our list of best tailgating spots is the pristine mountain setting of Colorado. With three universities of its own, the towering Rockies and thinner air are an ideal setting for any die-hard fan pumped up to watch the pigskin fly. A rugged, wild west aura permeates the parking lot as fans grill everything from elk burgers, to buffalo dogs and even fresh Rocky Mountain oysters. With the Coors Brewery just a few miles away in Golden, you can bet the beverages come fresh from the factory and are ice cold to boot.

The University of California Los Angeles is home to the Rose Bowl. With a football legacy steeped in tradition, this venue has all the trappings of a memorable pre-game experience. California sunshine, tanned co-eds, and lean turkey burgers on the grill give even non-fans a reason to cheer for the Bruins. With a laid-back, beach bum mentality, it’s not uncommon to see tailgaters in flip-flops and tank-tops. Plus, a win for the home team includes a change of venue to a sandy beach for a bon fire and a night cap.

Finally, the University of Washington offers tailgaters something altogether different. While the main tailgating venue is pretty much what you’d expect, it’s the stern-gaiting that has everyone talking. Sail up to Husky Stadium while dining on Dungeness crab or wild salmon and sipping on a bottle of Red Hook or a glass of Chateau St. Michelle. Keep the beverages cold in the galley fridge or simply submerge your six-pack in the cool waters of the Pacific Northwest. When the final whistle has been blown pull up anchor and set sail – let everyone else deal with the traffic.


Each college town has its own nuances and unique traditions just waiting to be discovered. Locum in one of these and you're likely to be knee-deep in a pile of nachos or port-side on a 20ft. schooner watching the scoreboard though binoculars. You game?

Topics: Colorado, Washington, UCLA, College Football, ESPN, United States

For your next locum adventure, look to the skies

Posted by Saralynn White


colorado lake 123rfIt may take a bit to acclimatize to the altitude in Colorado, but once your locum feet are firmly on terra firma, look up. It's a bird...it's a plane...it's 450 avian species who all call Colorado home. In fact, that renowned Rocky Mountain high has a lot to do with the sport of birding.

king-bird-usaNow, don't go "tsk-ing" your tongue. Birders are no longer khaki or tweed-wearing geeks or binocular-toting Miss Jane Hathaways; they come from every walk of life and there are over 50 million of them in the United States alone. Some birders travel the world to add another "lifer" to their list. Others sit quietly in the woods, certain that one day a black-capped chickadee will look them straight in the eye. Still others take locum assignments in Colorado.

snowy-owl-usaThat's right, countless locum doctors are also birders (you could say they travel with binoculars and an MD), and as they take to the rivers and trails of Colorado, they also take to the "sights": falcons sharing the sky with droves of tiny white-throated swifts; owls snoozing inside hollow trees; and prairie chickens strutting across vast stretches of golden short grass.

yellow-bird-usaSlip on your environmentally friendly CrocsTM and wander Colorado's Kingbird Trail, nestled among the Black Forest of Ponderosa Pines that tower proudly over the region. This eponymous trail is home to the flying "tyrants" - their genus name and a richly deserved moniker (Kingbirds are known to guard their breeding territories aggressively, often chasing away much larger birds). They're also known to wait on an exposed perch for food or trespassers, though birders need not be concerned - unless they forget their wide-brimmed hats!

This land of birds is also home to some of the most beautiful grasslands along the fruited plain, where the buffalo roam and the deer and the antelope play. Spend some time in the high country above the tree line and you'll sight rosy-finches, grouse and woodpeckers. You'll also discover golden eagles, mountain plovers, belted kingfishers, jays and bluebirds.

Scenery freak? Get on over to America's Mountain, the great Pikes Peak, where the landscapes change as often as the weather. Spruce-fir forests, sagebrush hills and short grass prairies are home to green-tailed and spotted towhee, woodpeckers, hummingbirds and pygmy owls. Other notable wildlife includes bighorn sheep, pika (a small, chinchilla-like animal), mule deer and bobcats - the latter of which we advise you to avoid whenever possible.

Finally, save the Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge for last. Here in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains (which means Blood of Christ), you may glimpse a bald eagle nestled in the tops of cottonwood trees or fishing in the ponds, wetlands or Rio Grande River. This emblem of a nation impresses even non-birders with their strength and majesty.

Any birder will tell you that great sightings come and go with the seasons, so if birding is in your blood, head to higher elevations this summer. After all, Colorado is for bird lovers and locum tenens alike.

 

Topics: Rocky Mountains, Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge, Kingbird Trail, Pikes Peak, Colorado, Birdwatching, Locum Tenens, United States

Locums for a Small World Blog

Twice a month, our inquisitive locum tenens community asks us to tackle topics ranging from cuisine and culture to recreation and entertainment. We also include great storytelling from our doctors. Have a topic you’d like to read about? Let us know.

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