Working as a GP in Australia
Australia offers so much for a GP thinking of making the move to Australia – residents enjoy a high quality of life, a superb education and health system, a stable economic and political environment, clean and safe surroundings along with a fantastic climate allowing for that enviable outdoor lifestyle.
It offers the opportunity to spend a fixed term or permanent position enjoying everything Australia has to offer whilst gaining experience in a new healthcare setting.
From the tropical north to the cooler southern states, Australia enjoys plenty of sunshine and warm weather. The country experiences temperate weather for most of the year and the weather can vary dependent on location. Living in Australia, you can make outdoor plans which can be relied on allowing you to enjoy all the outdoor activities on offer for you and your family.
Economy and Income
Australia has a resilient economy and expected to grow to the 12th largest economy by 2023. Unemployment rate is at a steady low of 4% with plenty of interesting employment opportunities. As a GP in Australia, you have the opportunity to earn an excellent income with many overseas trained GPs earning more.
Quality of Life
Australia consistently ranks highly for Quality of life scores worldwide. Australians enjoy excellent health care and education facilities with that enviable relaxed, outdoor lifestyle and strong friendships.
Ease of Transition
Australia is an English speaking country with a multicultural population. As a GP in Australia, you are likely to find your day to day clinical practice similar to what you may be used to at home. You are well supported into practice with a Clinical Supervisor who will ensure you’re fully up to speed with Medicare billings and new processes.
We help (free of charge) with all the essential paperwork needed before your move including medical registration and visa paperwork. Closer to your arrival date, we provide an information pack for everything you need to get set up once you’re there! If you want help with accommodation and schools, we can put you in touch with relocation agents who can help.
Read more from our happy GPs already living their dream down under!
Frequently Asked Questions
I want to apply for a job in Australia where can I work?
In an area which is classified a Distribution Priority Areas or DPA. The practice must also be able to hold a Health Workforce certificate to sponsor you on your visa. The workforce locator map here will allow you to check the geographical classification of any location in Australia
How long are the contracts?
Generally, 2 years – with some more rural practices may consider 12 months
How long does the paperwork take?
For Australia we suggest approximately 9 months from job acceptance to visa approval
Will I work under supervision?
Yes, In Australia initially but just for 6 months if you’re substantially comparable. A period of self-reflection, peer review and clinical case analysis. There are no exams if substantially comparable.
What is the RACGP Practice Experience Program (PEP) Specialist Stream?
This is a pathway program designed for specialist international medical graduates (SIMGs) to gain Fellowship with the RACGP. The workforce and training program allow GPs to access Medicare benefits while working towards fellowship.
Please visit the PEP Specialist Stream webpage for more details.
To apply for the program, all SIMGs must first complete a comparability assessment.
Do I need to sit exams on the PEP Specialist stream Pathway?
After satisfactorily completing all of the program requirements, substantially comparable participants will be eligible to apply for FRACGP. Partially comparable participants are eligible to enrol in the Fellowship exams
Why do I have to meet English language skills registration standards?
To be registered as a health practitioner in Australia, you must be able to demonstrate that your English language skills will enable you to safely practice your profession.
If English is your first language then you must prove evidence of schooling and / or further education in an English speaking country. If you are not able to prove this, then you may need to sit an English language exam such as IELTS / OET. If you sat PLAB or IELTS coming to the UK and continued working in an English speaking environment then it’s likely you will meet the requirement.
You can click here for further info on AHPRA English Language Policy.
What is AHPRA registration?
AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency) is Australia’s national organisation responsible for doctor registration and accreditation.
To practice medicine legally in Australia you must be registered with AHPRA.
Can I work part time on the visa?
Yes, you can work full or part time on the temporary work visa.
Is there an upper age limit for the work visa?
No there are no age requirements for the Subclass 482 visa. If you wish to apply for Permanent Residency then upper age limits of 45 apply however there are circumstances where this can be exempted.
Do I need private health insurance?
Australia holds a reciprocal agreement with 11 countries including the UK and Ireland which allows you to access publicly funded services. You may wish to take out health insurance for the long term for when you are in Australia as this will give you & your family additional cover to what may be obtained via the Australian Medicare system.
How will I be taxed?
You will be taxed as an Australian resident. The tax system is incremental with the top tax rate as 45% which is paid on anything over $180K. You are likely to work as an independent contractor so you can put some costs against your gross income.