Physician Guide to Locum Tenens Jobs in Colorado

Imagine for a moment that you are stuck in traffic on your way to work, bored of the same monotonous routine, and looking to experience new scenery and culture. Then, your phone vibrates. It’s your Barton recruiter with the answer. They share a new listing with great pay, your dream schedule, and it will start at a time that fits your current life. The only problem is that it is in Colorado which you know very little about. That’s where Barton comes in!

Colorado travel guide

What You Need to Know About Colorado as a Locum Tenens Physician?

Our recruiters and staffing specialists do not expect you, the provider, to know ins-and-outs of every state in the country. To help you make an informed decision, we’ve compiled information from TripAdvisor, state government pages, and tourist information sources to give you a glimpse into life in Colorado.

Click here for open physician jobs in Colorado!

Colorado: A Brief History

Colorado officially became a state in 1876, earning the nickname the “Centennial State” due to its admission to the Union in the centennial year of the United States’ independence. Colorado’s history is steeped in the pioneering spirit of the American West, with tales of gold rushes, explorers, and settlers shaping the state’s identity. From the days of the Wild West to the modern era, Colorado has played a significant role in the development of the United States, making it a fascinating place to delve into the country’s past. 

Colorado’s mix of natural wonders, rich history, and proximity to other states makes it an inviting place to work and explore. Whether it’s the allure of its unique attractions or the promise of a vibrant urban lifestyle, Colorado offers something for everyone, making it an ideal destination for both work and play.

What is there to do and see in Colorado?

  • Colorado is home to many natural wonders, from the majestic Rocky Mountains to the stunning Garden of the Gods, providing ample opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers to explore and appreciate the state’s breathtaking landscapes.
  • Whether it’s skiing in the world-renowned resorts of Aspen and Vail, whitewater rafting in the Arkansas River, or rock climbing in Eldorado Canyon, Colorado offers an abundance of thrilling outdoor activities for adrenaline junkies and sports enthusiasts alike. 
  • Enjoy attractions such as Downtown Denver, the Red Rocks Amphitheatre, and the historic mining town of Telluride, ensuring that visitors can indulge in a vibrant urban setting, music, and history.

How close is Colorado to other cities and states?

  • Denver, Colorado to Boulder, Colorado, is approximately 25 miles; around 30 to 45 minutes by car
  • Denver, Colorado to Salt Lake City, Utah: Roughly 530 miles; about 8 to 9 hours by car.
  • Denver, Colorado to Cheyenne, Wyoming: Approximately 100 miles; around 1.5 to 2 hours by car. 
  • Denver, Colorado to Albuquerque, New Mexico: Approximately 450 miles; around 6.5 to 7 hours by car.

Physician Scope of Practice In Colorado

What is the Scope of Practice for Physicians in Colorado?

In Colorado, physicians have full practice authority, which means they can practice medicine to the full extent of their education, training, and licensure. This acknowledges their rigorous preparation and recognizes them as primary healthcare providers. Physicians with full practice authority can make independent decisions regarding patient care, prescribe medications, order tests and procedures, and develop treatment plans. The benefits include increased job satisfaction, improved patient care, and reduced healthcare costs. Full practice authority empowers physicians to provide comprehensive and high-quality medical care, ultimately benefiting the health and well-being of the population.

Can Physicians Sign Death Certificates in Colorado?

In Colorado, physicians are legally authorized to sign death certificates. They play a vital role in ensuring accurate and timely completion of death certificates, which are essential legal documents. Accuracy and completeness are crucial, requiring thorough examination, review of medical records, and consultation with other healthcare professionals if needed.

Does Colorado Recognize Physicians as Primary Care Providers? 

The state of Colorado acknowledges the crucial role of physicians as primary care providers, emphasizing their education, training, and expertise in delivering comprehensive and coordinated care to patients. The state’s recognition aligns with the healthcare landscape, where primary care physicians serve as the first point of contact for patients, coordinating care across settings and providing preventive, acute, and chronic care services. This recognition establishes a framework for effective healthcare delivery, promoting collaboration among healthcare professionals, enhancing patient outcomes, and contributing to community well-being.

Can Prescribe Schedule II Drugs in Colorado?

In Colorado, physicians are licensed professionals authorized to prescribe schedule II drugs to patients. Physicians consider the patient’s needs, medical history, and medication benefits and risks when prescribing. In some cases, special permission may be needed from the patient’s insurance company. Beyond prescribing, physicians can also provide information about other treatment options and refer patients to specialists or other healthcare providers.

Do Physicians Qualify for Medical Staff Membership in Colorado?

In the state of Colorado, licensed physicians who meet specific criteria are eligible for medical staff membership in healthcare facilities such as hospitals or clinics. Membership offers numerous benefits, including clinical privileges, professional collaboration, continuing education, peer review, and voting rights. Medical staff members have responsibilities to provide high-quality patient care, maintain accurate records, and adhere to facility policies. Medical staff governance is typically organized through a governing body that oversees operations in collaboration with the facility’s administration. Medical staff membership is crucial for ensuring quality and safety in patient care, with physicians expected to demonstrate professionalism, competence, and a commitment to continuous improvement.

Can Physicians Order Physical Therapy in Colorado?

In the state of Colorado, physicians are endowed with the full authority to prescribe physical therapy as an essential component of their patients’ treatment plans. This authority is firmly rooted in the recognition that physical therapy plays a vital role in promoting the overall well-being and rehabilitation of individuals with various health conditions. With this authority, physicians can confidently refer their patients to licensed physical therapists, ensuring that they receive appropriate and timely physical therapy interventions. This collaborative approach between physicians and physical therapists maximizes the effectiveness of the healthcare services provided to patients, leading to better outcomes and improved quality of life.

Can Physicians Sign Handicap Parking Permit Forms in Colorado?

Physicians in Colorado are authorized to certify disability for parking placards, which is crucial for individuals with disabilities to obtain necessary accommodations for their transportation needs. The process involves a medical evaluation to assess functional limitations and determine eligibility. Physicians certify disability based on factors such as mobility limitations and other qualifying conditions. The certification enables individuals to apply for a disability parking placard through the DMV, facilitating their participation in activities and promoting independence.

Can Physicians Sign POLST/POST/MOLST/MOST/COLST Forms in Colorado? 

Physicians are authorized to sign MOST forms in the state of Colorado. These forms are designed to guide healthcare professionals in making decisions about life-sustaining treatments for patients who are seriously ill or have a life-limiting condition. By signing a MOST form, a physician can indicate the patient’s preferences for medical interventions such as CPR, intubation, and artificial nutrition and hydration. 

Can Physicians Sign Do Not Resuscitate Orders in Colorado?

In Colorado, physicians are legally authorized to sign Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders. This authorization allows patients to have their end-of-life treatment wishes respected in the event of cardiac arrest or respiratory failure. The process involves a conversation between the physician and the patient or their legal representative, during which the patient’s medical condition, prognosis, and preferences are evaluated. Informed consent is required before the physician can sign the DNR order, which becomes part of the patient’s medical record and guides the course of treatment in a medical emergency. DNR orders are not absolute and can be revoked or modified if the patient’s condition changes or their preferences evolve. This authorization reflects Colorado’s commitment to patient autonomy and recognizes the importance of end-of-life care planning.

What are the Continuing Education Requirements for Physicians in Colorado?

In Colorado, medical professionals must complete 50 CME credit hours, including two hours on controlled substances, to maintain their licenses. This requirement aims to ensure that physicians are up-to-date on the safe and appropriate use of controlled substances, thereby enhancing patient safety and minimizing the risk of misuse or diversion. Physicians can fulfill this requirement by participating in conferences, workshops, seminars, or online courses. The Colorado Medical Board maintains a list of approved CME providers and activities to assist physicians in meeting this requirement.

Find Your Next Physician Assistant Job with Barton

Barton coordinates your job search from start to finish!



We’ll schedule a phone consultation with a Barton Associates team member to discuss your interests, goals, and work history in order to get a sense of what you’re looking for in your next job.

Your Barton team will then go to work, compiling a list of open jobs in our extensive network that match your interests and skill set.



Once you’ve had a chance to evaluate your list of opportunities, your Barton rep will submit your information to facility you want to take an assignment at.

If there’s a match, we’ll work with the client manager on next steps.



Don’t worry! Barton Associates will handle licensing, credentialing, and travel arrangements before you arrive.

Your Barton rep will also work with your new facility to ensure you’re set up and ready to go on day one.


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