If you’re considering a career in medicine, the process of how to become a doctor in Australia can put you on a path like no other – but what does it involve?
For those who are on the cusp of graduating from secondary school, or perhaps even those who find themselves lacking purpose, pursuing a career in medicine is growing in popularity. Whether your motivation lies in a passion for science, chasing a sizeable pay cheque, or even as someone who genuinely wants to make a difference in the world around them, even the most dedicated people can baulk when they learn about how to become a doctor in Australia, and just how much dedication is involved.
However, for those who are willing to make the commitment and do the work, starting your career in medicine from the ground up involves a significant amount of study. For those who eventually reach the other side and receive their tertiary qualifications, there’s no other career path quite like becoming a doctor – so what exactly does one have to do to get there?
The Process Of Becoming A Doctor In Australia
While each country in the world has a slightly different process involved with becoming a doctor, Australia’s system is arduous for a reason. Undisputedly, Australia’s health system is one of the best in the world. It provides quality, safe and affordable health care for residents right around our great nation, and is also a key reason as to why we enjoy one of the longest life expectancies in the world. As a result, the standards we place on our medical professionals are high, and a great deal of training is required in order to keep it that way.
Believe it or not, the path to becoming a fully qualified doctor or medical practitioner is slightly different to what television portrays via shows like Grey’s Anatomy, House or Scrubs. To become a doctor in Australia, you’ll need to be disciplined, astute, and certainly not afraid of long term commitment.
Thankfully, it’s not a business that’s about to go bust anytime soon. According to statistics released from the University Of Sydney, a whopping 94.9% of medical students are employed within four months of graduating. When compared to other degrees or fields, this figure means that there’s never been a better time to become a doctor in Australia.
However, that’s not to say that choosing this path is an easy one. In order to become fully qualified, expect to dedicate years of your life to the cause with a lot of study. As a general rule, becoming a doctor in Australia involves eight key steps:
- Completing the Year 12 prerequisites while still in high school.
- Graduate from a Bachelor’s Degree at university.
- Sit the Graduate Australian Medical School Admissions Test and apply for entry.
- Study a Doctor of Medicine, which is a four year masters level degree.
- Complete an intern year.
- Gain general medical registration through the Medical Board of Australia.
- Complete one or more years of prevocational training for studying specialties.
- Obtain fellowship through a specialty medical training program.
The most common route for students going into medicine is by studying the right subjects at school, and achieving a sufficiently high ATAR to apply for entry into an Undergraduate Degree in Medicine. Otherwise referred to as a ‘direct entry’ into medicine, it means starting your journey in an undergraduate medical program at an Australian university, generally in the year after you’ve finished high school.
However, this understandably places a lot of pressure on teenagers to decide on what they want to do with the rest of their lives. If the idea of studying how to become a doctor in Australia appeals to you slightly later on in life, the alternative is to approach it via studying as a postgraduate who has already been to university. Ultimately, our great nation needs doctors who have a wide range of knowledge and life experiences. As a postgraduate entry candidate for medical school – especially mature aged entry – you’re likely to have both, and could potentially have all the makings of a great doctor.
When it comes to selecting a fellowship, there are many career paths available to new doctors, with just a handful including cardiology, dermatology, and pediatrics. If a doctor in Australia is looking to pursue a long term career as a general practitioner – which is arguably one of the most flexible medical careers with a wide range of associated benefits – there are usually two common fellowship options, being FRACGP and FACRRM.
Needless to say, this can quickly amount to over ten years of study, training and assessment. While this varies depending on your desired specialty, such as becoming a surgeon, specialist physician or general practitioner, the requirements again vary depending on which state or territory in Australia you wish to practice medicine in. However, the potential rewards that await you after completing your long and no doubt arduous set of studies make pursuing a career as a doctor entirely worth it.
Pursuing A Medical Career With House Call Doctor
If you’re on the hunt for a locum doctor 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.