Provider Spotlight: Dr. Mandel, ER Maverick & Locum Tenens Physician

The Story of How Dr. Ken Teufel, Founder of Interim Physicians, Helped Create the Modern Locum Tenens Industry

The meteoric rise of the locum tenens industry in recent years has changed the face of healthcare staffing in lasting ways. So much so that it seems as if physicians have always worked on a temporary basis. In truth, the locum tenens model has only been with us for the past 45 years.

The industry’s origin story has been told before but almost always in an incomplete fashion. The tale is often recounted through the perspective of how a particular firm contributed to the industry’s legacy, which, by definition means it’s only a partial picture. 

We’re guilty as charged on that account! On our company history page, we tout our role in helping create the industry in 1979 when our founder, Dr. Ken Teufel, launched one of the first locum tenens agencies, a firm that would one day be known as… Interim Physicians. 

But now, the complete history of our industry has finally been told by Locumpedia, a locum tenens industry resource and job board. In connection with National Locum Tenens Week, Locumpedia published the complete, untold story of locum tenens. We’re thrilled to say that we play a starring role in their story.

Locumpedia’s lengthy story traces the history of locum tenens from its earliest iterations and includes a recap of Dr. Ken’s background, his formation of the Physicians Relief Network, and how as our medical director until his passing in 2021, he helped grow our company into one of the top 20 largest locum tenens staffing agencies.

Here’s some of what you’ll learn about us in the story: 

  • The career-defining “a-ha” moment sparked the idea for Dr. Ken to sell his practice and pursue locum tenens work nationwide.
  • The formation of Dr. Ken’s network of doctors that eventually became the Physician’s Relief Network (PRN).
  • The pathway from PRN to Interim Physicians, and much more.

Our journey reflects the evolution of the locum tenens industry itself — from a novel concept, to an interim solution, to a permanent feature of healthcare staffing that fills critical gaps in healthcare coverage in thousands of facilities. 

Dr. Ken’s legacy lives on today through the work of the thousands of physicians he placed directly and indirectly. It’s a reminder of how ingenuity and a passion for problem-solving can have a tremendous impact on the world. 

Read more about how Interim contributed to the birth of locum tenens in the full article here: Locum Legends: A Complete History of the Locum Tenens Industry.