If you’re at the beginning of your medical career and wondering which path to take, opting to work as a GP can be very rewarding – but what are the other perks?

Becoming a doctor in Australia is a long and strenuous process, and certainly not for the faint of heart. To pursue a career in medicine, candidates need to finish Year 12 and graduate from a Bachelor’s Degree, which usually takes four years. From there, one then needs to complete a four year postgraduate medical program, before completing a year long internship in order to become fully registered – or almost a decade of study.

After finally receiving their qualification, young doctors are left with another big choice – what to specialise in, if anything? Despite common misconceptions, opting to work as a GP is anything but boring. 

Why Work As A GP?

The average Australian is likely to come across a broad range of specialist doctors within their lifetime, but in most cases – a diagnosis starts at your local general practitioner, or one of the most commonly recognised types of doctors.

A general practitioner – otherwise known as a GP – is a doctor who is also qualified in general medical practice. General practitioners are often the first point of contact for someone, of any age, who feels sick or has a health concern. They treat a wide range of medical conditions and health issues, and often issue referrals to see other medical specialists. 

In the medical world, to work as a GP is to be somewhat of a jack of all trades. However, the options are vast, as many general practitioners may also choose to undertake further study in specific areas such as women’s or men’s health, sports medicine or paediatrics. While GP’s see a broad range of patient presentations every day, advancements in telehealth means the chance to also work remotely, which makes defining an “average day” of working in a general practice increasingly difficult – but what are the perks?

Building Experience – If variety is indeed the spice of life, then there’s no shortage of it when it comes to GP careers. From acute, complex and chronic conditions through to the prevention of illness, general practitioners see a broad range of patient presentations every day. 

Increased Flexibility – Depending on your stage of life and career, most general practitioners have the freedom and flexibility to decide what hours they work (such as full time or part time), or even across multiple practices. 

Be At The Front Of The Front Line – As the first point of healthcare contact for most Australian patients, you have an opportunity to take a holistic approach to their health, including working with colleagues from other specialities and being a key influencing factor to a patient’s health. 

Sub Specialities – Opting to become a general practitioner doesn’t rule out other subspecialties. In fact, many use the opportunity to pursue other areas of interest such as paediatrics, anaesthesia, emergency medicine, and even academia. 

Get Paid Well – While many general practitioners in Australia take home well over six figures every year, if you’re looking to increase your pay cheque, it’s not uncommon for GP’s to take up extra evening or weekend shifts if they are so inclined. 

Access Better Rates – Did you know that work as a GP also means being a preferred loan candidate for things like mortgages? Thanks to your ongoing dedication to the medical field, you’re deemed a stable and reliable applicant, meaning better interest rates and terms. 

See The World – Did you know that Australian medical qualifications are recognised abroad? With reciprocal arrangements with New Zealand (ACRRM and RACGP), Canada (ACRRM and RACGP) and Ireland (RACGP only), GP careers can literally help you to travel the world. 

Be A Part Of A Community – Perhaps one of the most appealing factors associated with a career as a general practitioner is the patients themselves. Not only are you able to build long term relationships with people, but you may also treat their families for generations to come. 

As the whole world continues to move forward into the digital age, options in regards to GP careers have also advanced accordingly.

Telehealth is classed as the distribution of health-related services and information via electronic information and telecommunication technologies. It allows long-distance patient and clinician contact, care, advice, reminders, education, intervention, monitoring, and remote admissions – essentially, it’s made seeing a doctor easier than ever. Who would have thought that a career in medicine as a general practitioner, could also open the door to being a digital nomad? 

Starting Your Career As A General Practitioner 

It comes as no real surprise to see that the practice of becoming a locum doctor is on the rise. With increased flexibility and opportunities available, just a handful of the key benefits associated with this career path include greater flexibility, the ability to travel, increased earning potential and ultimately – job satisfaction. 

House Call Doctor are a team of medical practitioners who specialise in optimal at home health care, and provide after hours access to doctors across Queensland. As a wholly Australian owned and managed medical service, House Call Doctor cares about providing access to the very best medical care to people when they need it most, when their regular GP is closed. 

If you’re intrigued by the idea of making your career count, why not register your interest with us to become a locum doctor and build the work life balance that you’ve always envisioned for yourself.