Physician Guide to Locum Tenens Jobs in Kentucky

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 Kentucky which you know very little about. That’s where Barton comes in! 

What You Need to Know About Kentucky 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 Kentucky.

Click here for open physician jobs in Kentucky!

Kentucky: A Brief History

Kentucky became the 15th state in the Union on June 1, 1792. Kentucky boasts diverse landscapes, including rolling hills, fertile plains, and the famous bluegrass pastures. The Appalachian Mountains grace its eastern border, while the Ohio River flows along the northern boundary. This state has a rich culture, including its world renowned bourbon whiskey, bluegrass music, and world renowned horse racing. Historically, tobacco farming dominated Kentucky’s economy. Today, it thrives in various sectors, including manufacturing, healthcare, and technology.

In summary, Kentucky blends history, culture, and natural wonders, making it a captivating state to explore! 

What is there to do and see in Kentucky?

  • Baseball fans, you are in for a treat! Kentucky is home to the Louisville Slugger Baseball Bat museum and factory. The museum shows the history behind the legendary sports equipment company, and gives guests the opportunity to see how baseball bats are made. 
  • Witness the magic of bourbon production at Maker’s Mark Distillery. Guests can watch firsthand how sour mash fermented in cypress vats transforms into world renowned Kentucky bourbon. Don’t worry, they offer tastings as well! 
  • There are plenty of outdoor adventures to take in Kentucky. Take a trip to Mammoth Cave National Park, home of the world’s longest cave system, or head to Corbin, Kentucky to Cumberland Falls State Park, where guests can enjoy hiking trails, scenic views, and take in the beautiful waterfall
  • Check out Churchill Downs, the world renowned horse racing complex where the Kentucky Derby is held. Take a tour of the grounds, and if you are lucky, even attend a race. Be sure to grab a Mint Julep!

How close is Kentucky to other cities and states?

  • Louisville, Kentucky to Indianapolis, Indiana: Approximately 115 miles; around 2 to 2.5 hours by car. 
  • Lexington, Kentucky to Cincinnati, Ohio: Roughly 80 miles; about 1.5 to 2 hours by car. 
  • Bowling Green, Kentucky to Nashville, Tennessee: Around 65 miles; approximately 1 to 1.5 hours by car. 
  • Owensboro, Kentucky to St. Louis, Missouri: About 165 miles; approximately 2.5 to 3 hours by car. 
  • Covington, Kentucky to Columbus, Ohio: Approximately 100 miles; around 1.5 to 2 hours by car.

Physician Scope of Practice In Kentucky

What is the Scope of Practice for Physicians in Kentucky?

Kentucky physicians have full practice authority, granting them independent assessment, diagnosis, and treatment abilities. This provides enhanced patient access to care, comprehensive care coordination, and improved patient satisfaction. However, it also presents potential drawbacks like higher costs, risk of misdiagnosis, and accountability concerns. Overall, Kentucky’s full practice authority offers significant benefits for patients, ensuring high-quality healthcare services.

Can Physicians Sign Death Certificates in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, physicians have a significant responsibility to ensure accurate and timely filing of death certificates. The document serves as an essential record of a person’s passing and is used for various purposes. Physicians must provide specific information, including personal data, date and time of death, cause of death, and contributing factors. Death certificates have importance beyond immediate use, serving as historical records and contributing to public health surveillance. Accurate completion and timely filing by physicians are crucial for the integrity of vital records and various legal, administrative, and public health functions.

Does Kentucky Recognize Physicians as Primary Care Providers? 

Kentucky recognizes physicians’ essential role as primary care providers through statutes and regulations. The Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure defines primary care, and the Kentucky Administrative Regulations clarify the role of physicians within the state’s Medicaid program. The Kentucky Department for Public Health supports primary care providers to improve healthcare access and the overall health of Kentucky’s population.

Can Physicians Prescribe Schedule II Drugs in Kentucky?

Yes, physicians can prescribe schedule II drugs in Kentucky.

Do Physicians Qualify for Medical Staff Membership in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, physicians can apply for medical staff membership at hospitals and healthcare facilities. Eligibility criteria typically include having a valid medical license, completing an accredited residency program, board certification in a relevant specialty (if applicable), satisfactory professional and ethical standing, and malpractice insurance. Once eligibility requirements are met, physicians can submit an application to the hospital or healthcare facility. After an interview and review of credentials, physicians granted membership can practice medicine at the facility. Medical staff members are also expected to participate in hospital-wide activities such as quality improvement initiatives and patient safety programs.

Can Physicians Order Physical Therapy in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, physicians are authorized to order physical therapy for their patients, including making the initial referral, determining treatment frequency and duration, and modifying the plan of care.  Physicians must be licensed to practice medicine, familiar with state physical therapy laws and regulations, and provide a written prescription with specific information to the physical therapist. Physical therapists in Kentucky must also be licensed and collaborate with physicians to provide quality care, using their expertise in movement and function to help patients recover and improve their overall health.

Can Physicians Sign Handicap Parking Permit Forms in Kentucky?

Physicians in Kentucky are authorized to certify disability for parking placards. This authorization is established by state laws and regulations and is essential for ensuring accessible and convenient parking for individuals with disabilities. Authorizing physicians to certify disability for parking placards ensures that individuals with disabilities have the necessary documentation for equal opportunities for mobility and independence.

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

Physicians in Kentucky are legally authorized to sign a variety of forms related to healthcare matters. This includes medical certificates, prescriptions, death certificates, disability forms, insurance forms, medical consent forms, medical records requests, and medical malpractice claims. Physicians’ signatures on these forms certify medical conditions and related matters, facilitating insurance claims, disability benefits, school attendance, and other healthcare processes. While physicians have broad signing authority, specific forms or circumstances may require additional signatures or authorizations. Patients should consult with their physician and review form requirements to ensure proper completion.

Can Physicians Sign Do Not Resuscitate Orders in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, physicians can issue Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders for patients under their care. A DNR order instructs healthcare professionals to withhold life-sustaining treatments if a patient’s heart or breathing stops. Physicians must follow specific protocols, including obtaining the patient’s informed consent and documenting the order. DNR orders are typically issued for patients who are terminally ill or have a life-limiting condition. They can provide peace of mind for patients and their families.

What are the Continuing Education Requirements for Physicians in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, doctors need to complete 60 CME hours every three years to renew their license. This rule keeps doctors updated on the latest medical knowledge. The CME hours can be earned through activities like conferences, workshops, and online courses. Doctors must track and report their CME hours to the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure when renewing their license. This requirement helps ensure that doctors in Kentucky provide the highest quality of care to their patients.

Find Your Next Physician 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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