When it comes to choosing a career path as a medical practitioner, general practice research offers a unique and undervalued opportunity to change lives. 

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, a GP is somewhat of a jack of all trades, but may also undertake further study in specific areas such as womens or mens health, sports medicine or even paediatrics. While working as a GP is often falsely viewed as a limited career path for specialties in the world of healthcare, one of the most unique opportunities exclusive to this type of doctor is conducting general practice research. 

The Importance Of General Practice Research

Eight in ten Australians consult with their GP at least once per year, and two million people are seen each week in general practice surgeries right around the nation. While this form of medicine is often regarded as the front line of healthcare in Australia, the majority of healthcare research funded is conducted in hospitals as opposed to primary care settings. However, investments into general practice research is aiming to change that.

In recent times, general practices have evolved into larger facilities to include more comprehensive health care provisions. In turn, many GPs have begun to work as members of a team instead of independently, and have taken on a key role in the management of chronic illness and multimorbidity. As the latter two factors place pressure on national healthcare systems with their constantly evolving nature, general practice research is essential when it comes to ensuring that the best possible care is available to those when they need it. 

General practice research takes decades to formulate accurate observations and conclusions, the process of documenting the unique presentations of patients include monitoring factors such as the below, and how they influence treatment options. 

  • Dealing with undifferentiated problems
  • Focusing on the patient at all ages and stages of life
  • Juggling time for preventive activities with management of symptoms presented
  • Focusing on the doctor-patient relationship
  • Being person-focused rather than disease-focused or organ-focused

Thankfully, Australia has a rich history of general practice research. Much work has gone into describing the patient population, and the care and treatments provided by GPs. This process began with Charles Bridges-Webb’s work conducted in 1973, known as the Traralgon study which surveyed morbidity and the treatments used in general practice. 

Today, the studies of how social factors, financing systems, organisational structures and processes, health technologies and personal behaviours affect access to healthcare, the quality and cost of healthcare, and ultimately our health and wellbeing is crucial to the continuous improvement of general practice and primary health care. Without general practice research, medical practitioners would be forced to rely on outdated information that may not be accurate or in the best interests of their patients. 

For qualified medical professionals, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners provides a number of services to its members undertaking general practice research as a means to support clinical practice and any level of research GPs may wish to engage in. These include the many John Murtagh Library services, and the National Research and Evaluation Ethics Committee (NREEC), which supports and offers guidance to general practice researchers and related others. Ultimately, the RACGP is acutely aware of the importance of general practice research, and actively encourages the pursuit of it for GPs right around Australia. 

GP Career Opportunities In Queensland 

If you’re on the hunt for a doctor or general practitioner role in the Sunshine State, there’s a chance that you’ll either want to work a little, a lot – or somewhere in between. Queensland based opportunities with House Call Doctor offer flexibility, with shifts that fit around your current workload, personal commitments, or even just lifestyle preferences. 

Whether you’re looking to increase your earning potential, gain experience, or even just have a desire for greater job satisfaction, opportunities with House Call Doctor offer local medical practitioners a chance to explore what out of hours and locum healthcare is like, while still retaining a sense of freedom and flexibility. If you’re looking for an opportunity to broaden your career horizons, are you – 

  • An Australian or Internationally Trained Medical Graduate 
  • Have full registration with the Medical Board of Australia
  • Have two years post graduate experience, including experience in paediatrics, accident and emergency, general medicine and surgery  

If you can answer yes to all of the above, then why not consider registering your interest for locum general practitioner doctor jobs with House Call Doctor today, and be a part of the medical revolution.