Physician Guide to Locum Tenens Jobs in Tennessee

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

Sign welcoming you to Tennessee

What You Need to Know About Tennessee 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 Tennessee.

Click here for open physician jobs in Tennessee!

Tennessee: A Brief History

Get ready for a wild ride through Tennessee’s history! It starts with ancient Native American civilizations, then along came brave frontiersmen like Davy Crockett. This musical state gave birth to blues on Beale Street in Memphis and country music twang in the Smoky Mountains.  Today, it’s known for hot chicken in Nashville, Elvis’s Graceland, and whiskey smooth as a country song.  Tennessee’s a place where the past echoes in the present, with a whole lot of soul mixed in.

From its frontier roots to modern-day music meccas, Tennessee’s history is a soundtrack of the American experience. It’s a place where hardship and resilience met with innovation and creativity, shaping a state with a rich legacy and a spirit that keeps on singing.  Whether you’re tracing the footsteps of legends or savoring a plate of Memphis BBQ, Tennessee’s story resonates with the heart and soul of the South.

What is there to do and see in Tennessee?

  • Musical Pilgrimage: Embark on a musical journey through Tennessee, starting in Memphis, the birthplace of blues, where you can walk down historic Beale Street, visit the iconic Graceland, and lose yourself in the soulful sounds of live music. From there, make your way to Nashville, the heart of country music, where you can dance the night away to the tunes of talented musicians in the vibrant honky-tonks and music venues.
  • Smoky Mountain Adventures: Immerse yourself in the breathtaking natural beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, where you can embark on scenic hikes to cascading waterfalls, spot black bears in their natural habitat, and soak in the crisp mountain air. For a truly adventurous experience, try white-water rafting on the Pigeon River or zip-lining through the towering trees.
  • Good Eats & Sips: Satisfy your taste buds with Tennessee’s culinary delights. Start your food tour in Nashville, where you can indulge in the famous hot chicken, a spicy and flavorful dish that is a must-try. Next, head to Memphis for some of the best BBQ in the country, where you can savor tender smoked ribs, pulled pork, and brisket. Wash it all down with a sip of Tennessee whiskey, as you explore the Tennessee Whiskey Trail, which features distilleries and tasting rooms throughout the state.
  • Dollywood Delights: Dive into a world of kitschy fun at Dolly Parton’s Dollywood, a unique theme park and resort nestled in the heart of the Smoky Mountains. Experience thrilling rides, heartwarming shows, and authentic Appalachian crafts and traditions. Meet the friendly park characters, enjoy delicious Southern-style food, and embrace the spirit of the Smoky Mountains.

How close is Tennessee to other cities and states?

  • Kentucky: Tennessee shares its entire northern border with Kentucky. The distance from central Tennessee to the Kentucky border is negligible. 
  • Missouri: A small portion of Tennessee’s northwestern corner borders Missouri. The distance from central Tennessee to the Missouri border is around 200 miles.
  • Mississippi: Tennessee shares its southwestern border with Mississippi. The distance from central Tennessee to the Mississippi border is approximately 150 miles.  


Physicians Scope of Practice In Tennessee

What is the Scope of Practice for Physicians in Tennessee?

Physicians in Tennessee have full practice authority, enabling them to make independent medical decisions for their patients without supervision. The goal of this autonomy is to enhance patient access to high-quality, personalized healthcare, promote patient satisfaction, improve health outcomes, and reduce healthcare costs.

Can Physicians Sign Death Certificates in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, physicians hold the authorization to sign death certificates. The Tennessee Department of Health oversees this vital records system. Physicians, equipped with medical knowledge and training, are responsible for determining the cause of death and completing the death certificate. Death certificates serve as important legal documents for various purposes such as estate settlements, life insurance benefits, and Social Security survivor benefits.

Does Tennessee Recognize Physicians as Primary Care Providers? 

In Tennessee, physicians are recognized as primary care providers, as defined in state statutes and administrative codes. This recognition establishes the role of physicians in providing comprehensive and patient-centered care. Overall, Tennessee’s legal framework and supportive initiatives acknowledge the critical role of physicians as primary care providers, ensuring access to high-quality and coordinated care for individuals and families in the state.

Can Physicians Prescribe Schedule II Drugs in Tennessee?

Yes, physicians can prescribe schedule II drugs in Tennessee.

Do Physicians Qualify for Medical Staff Membership in Tennessee?

Physicians in Tennessee are eligible for medical staff membership. To be eligible, they must be licensed to practice medicine in the state, have a valid DEA number, be in good standing with the TDH, and meet the hospital’s requirements. The process for obtaining membership varies, but generally involves submitting an application, providing documentation of credentials, and undergoing an interview. Medical staff membership allows physicians to practice medicine in a hospital or healthcare setting and provides access to hospital resources and support services.

Can Physicians Order Physical Therapy in Tennessee?

Tennessee physicians have the authority to order physical therapy for their patients. This recognition of physical therapy’s significance allows physicians to incorporate it into treatment plans, addressing various conditions. Physical therapists collaborate with physicians to develop personalized treatment plans targeting specific functional goals. The full authority granted to physicians emphasizes physical therapy’s role in comprehensive healthcare, ensuring access to high-quality services, improved patient outcomes, reduced costs, and enhanced quality of life.

Can Physicians Sign Handicap Parking Permit Forms in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, physicians are authorized to certify a person’s disability, granting them eligibility for parking placards. Physicians assess medical conditions and determine if individuals meet state criteria, ensuring equitable access to accessible parking. The certification process involves thorough evaluations, contributing to the fair distribution of parking placards to those who require them. By promoting inclusivity and accessibility, physicians play a crucial role in enhancing the quality of life for individuals with disabilities.

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

In Tennessee, physicians are authorized to sign POST forms. By signing a POST form, physicians acknowledge discussing the patient’s end-of-life wishes and reflecting those wishes in the orders. Physicians must complete a training program and obtain certification to sign POST forms. The process involves discussing the patient’s goals, completing the form, obtaining the patient’s or legal representative’s signature, and sharing it with healthcare providers. POST forms ensure that patients’ end-of-life wishes are respected and help ensure a dignified and peaceful death.

Can Physicians Sign Do Not Resuscitate Orders in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, physicians can sign DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) orders. The physician assesses the patient’s medical condition, prognosis, and care goals, explaining the implications of a DNR order. If deemed appropriate and in line with the patient’s wishes, the physician documents the DNR order in the patient’s medical record. State laws and medical regulations govern the validity and enforceability of DNR orders, and healthcare facilities have their own policies and procedures to safeguard patient rights and ethical considerations. DNR orders empower patients to exercise autonomy and control over their end-of-life care, upholding the principle of patient self-determination in healthcare decision-making. 

What are the Continuing Education Requirements for Physicians in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, physicians must obtain 40 Continuing Medical Education (CME) hours every two years to maintain their medical license. Physicians can obtain CME hours through various educational activities like conferences and online courses. The CME requirement promotes lifelong learning and ensures physicians stay current with medical knowledge, benefiting patient outcomes and public health. By fulfilling this requirement, physicians demonstrate their commitment to providing high-quality, evidence-based care throughout their careers.

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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