General Practitioner Jobs in Australia – Moving from the UK
Earnings for Australian GP jobs are a lot higher than you are used from the UK. Most GPs who move from the UK to Australia find their earnings go up significantly. Most GPs in Australia earn between $250 to 350k per annum. This increases as you establish your patient base. Some successful Australian GP jobs can earn a lot closer to $500k a year. Being willing to work in rural areas earns you some interesting incentives and having procedural skills does too.
Not like the UK!
The health service and doctors in Australia work very differently than in the UK. It makes more sense to think of the role in Australia as where you are self-employed and you take home a percentage of all the income they earn when they bill insurance companies, patients and Medicare. How much percentage you get ranges from 50% to 70% though it is not just about looking at high percentage options. Your potential earnings are also impacted by things such as;
● Whether you work at a practice that private bills only, bulk bills only or does a combination of either
● Whether the practice has a lot of patients
● How much you want to work and how many patients you want to see an hour
● Whether you are willing to do evening and weekend work
● Whether you can carry out minor procedures and if you can work some of the time in an in-house kind of clinic
It is important to keep in mind that a higher percentage is not going to always equal a high income if you have overall billings that are high. A lot of practices that offer a lower percentage might have higher support in terms of AHPs and nurses so you can see more patients and still maximize your income. Some might offer a lower percentage but offer a sign-on gift to help with relocation costs good for 2 to 3 years.
What is bulk billing?
With Australian GP jobs, bulk billing is when the patient does not pay for the consultation, the practice charges straight to Medicare. The minimum cost is $36.30. People who are eligible include those with concession cards, pensioners and minors. Non-bulk paying patients pay more for their consult, around $60. They can then make a claim to their insurance or to Medicare and get some partial kind of reimbursement.
Incentives from the federal government
Australia is not short of doctors exactly. The problem is most want to work in the cities and towns and not rurally. For this reason the GPRIP was started, (General Practice Rural Incentives Program). GPs get payments when they meet qualifying needs in remote and rural locations. A maximum of $47, 000 a year could be earned and added to what you already earn.
Moving and registration
Getting a visa and medical registration takes anywhere from 6 to 9 months but you have to get a suitable job offer first. There are five stages to UK GPs getting Australian GP jobs.
- The AMC does administrative work and checks you out and forwards the application to either the RACGP or ACRRM.
- Whichever college it is assesses whether you are a suitable candidate looking at qualifications and sometimes calling people for a Fitness for Intended Clinical Practice Interview.
- The AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioners Registration Authority) approves the registration, considering your college achievements and making sure you meet language requirements and have 10 years of certificate of good standing.
- You apply for and get a 457 work visa.
- You get a Medicare Provider Number once you are in Australia.