Moving to a new country is a daunting prospect and as a qualified doctor heading for Australia there are several things you should consider in time for your arrival.
Step One – Registration
There are a few stages to the process of registration so it is important to get started in good time. Firstly, you need to have your qualifications formally recognised in Australia by the Australian Medical Council (AMC). They assess the clinical skills, knowledge and other professional attributes of medical practitioners qualified overseas and their recognition of your medical education is the first step to practising in Australia. You will need to complete an assessment by a specialist medical college which will consider the comparability of your skills and education with that of an Australiantrained doctor. This will include both training and clinical experience. It is also necessary to obtain approval from the Medical Board of Australia and the Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency (AHPRA). This is the final confirmation of competence to practice at the desired level in Australia.
Step Two – Learn the Lingo
It’s important to remember that you are not just moving to another country to work, you may also be moving into a new culture or language. The Australian Values Statement is part of the application for permanent residency but even if you are only coming on a sponsored working visa it is a sensible idea to familiarise yourself with it. This will help you settle in to your new lifestyle and workplace comfortably. You may also want to read up on particulars of Australian medical practice, particularly expressions and the Australian Medicines Handbook.
Step Three – Insurance, Insurance, Insurance
Doctors working in the private sector are required by law to hold their own medical indemnity insurance. It is highly recommended that you seek the independent expertise of an insurance broker who can help you compare the options available and make sure you find appropriate cover. The Australian Government Department of Health provides a list of the five medical indemnity insurers in Australia.
Step Four – Keep in the loop
The last step is to register with the medical college, society or organisation which focuses on your practice specialty to keep up to date with industry news via events, regular publications and access to content online. Not only will this help you stay on top of the latest professional matters but it will provide you with access to a social and support network of your fellow doctors.
This publication is general in nature and is not comprehensive or constitute legal or medical advice. You should seek legal, medical or other professional advice before relying on any content, and practice proper clinical decision making with regard to individual circumstances. Persons implementing any recommendations contained in this publication must exercise their own independent skill or judgment or seek appropriate professional advice relevant to their own particular practice. Compliance with any recommendations will not in any way guarantee discharge of the duty of care owed to patients and others coming into contact with the health professional or practice. Tego Insurance Pty Ltd is not responsible to you or anyone else for any loss suffered in connection with the use of this information.
Eric is the CEO of Tego, an insurance agency offering specialist indemnity insurance solutions for the healthcare and life sciences sectors. His qualifications include a bachelor’s degree in business and law, a master’s degree from UNSW in law and management and an MBA from the AGSM.