“I’m looking for my first job in Australia. Where do I start?” is a question we often receive from International Medical Graduates (IMGs) or from overseas trained doctors. As we, People Medical Consulting. like sharing what we know to give doctors a clear pathway to finding a job here in Australia, here is a guideline that we prepared for them.
Step 1 – The Minimum Requirements
Your first step is to ensure you have completed the minimum requirements to get AHPRA registration. These are:
- Apply to ECFMG to have your qualifications verified via EPIC: http://www.ecfmgepic.org/
- Apply to AMC to have a portfolio established: https://account.amc.org.au/sign_in
- Complete your AMC Part 1: https://www.amc.org.au/assessment/mcq-exam
- Meet the AHPRA language requirements, document found here: https://www.ahpra.gov.au/registration/registration-standards/english-language-skills.aspx. This usually involves sitting an English language test, from the following options:
> IELTS: https://www.ielts.org/
> PTE: http://pearsonpte.com/
> TOEFL iBT: https://www.ets.org/toefl/ibt/register
- Complete the AMC Part 1: http://www.amc.org.au/assessment/mcq-exam
Step 2 – Understand Your Restrictions & Requirements
It’s important to do some research to ensure you know what criteria you have to meet, not only to get AHPRA Registration, but to get your visa and to get a Medicare Provider Number. These three things have very different requirements and it is important before you start your journey to check off everything. If you don’t, you could get AHPRA but not a Medicare Provider Number which means wasted time and money for you! Take some time to understand your restrictions and requirements. I’ve put some dot points below of what you should consider.
- Are you applying for Hospital or GP?
If you’re applying to the hospital, make sure you’re applying with a clear CV and you’re answering the selection criteria question with clear patient examples. Make sure the hospital can sponsor you (if you require a visa). Check your specialty- in GP, you need x2 supervisors, make sure AHPRA will give your hospital the tick of approval.
If you’re applying for GP…keep reading
- What experience do you have?
If you have less than 5 years GP experience, then you need to consider either getting more GP experience, sitting your AMC Clinical or heading to the hospital system first.
- Do you have a 19AB / DWS restriction?
As an IMG/OMG/FGAM, you’re restricted by 19AB (DWS or the “10 year moratorium”) so keep this in mind when you start applying for jobs. You’ll need to be in a “District of Workforce Shortage (DWS)” which is different to an “Area of Need”. You can check if a location is a DWS via DoctorConnect.
There are exemptions to 19AB / DWS, but be careful because each exemption has a different and specific criteria- if you’re not sure, please contact our team. Mistakes can mean no access to Medicare, which means you have to find a new job and go back through PESCI and AHPRA!
This is a blog we’ve written about 19AB- Read here: http://peoplemedical.com.au/19ab-dws-restrictions-doctor-recruitment-and-dws-the-facts/
- Are you on a visa or PR?
If you are a Permanent Resident or a Citizen, you’ll be restricted by 19AA. Read up on this and decide what 3GA program to apply for, ensuring that both you and the location meets the requirements. Check if something is rural on DoctorConnect.
This is a blog we’ve written about 19AA- Read here: http://peoplemedical.com.au/19aa-oh-how-you-surprised-us-2/
- You will require supervision
As you are getting your first job in Australia, AHPRA will require you to have x2 General Practitioners onsite, who have held Specialist AHPRA Registration in General Practice for more than 3 years. As a Level 1, you will require onsite supervision 100% of the time you are working.
Step 3 – Find a Job!
Your next step is to be offered a job! You can find these on major websites like Seek or Indeed or MyCareer. You can also contact our recruitment team here to understand how we can help: https://peoplemedical.com.au/jobs/#submitcv
As you’re getting your first job in Australia, it is important to let your employer know about your restrictions. It’s also important that they can provide you with the support that you need. Make sure they have x2 VR GP’s with 3+ years experience as a VR doctor before you sign a contract and commence the next step.
Step 4 – AHPRA and PESCI
Once you have a job offer, you can consider sitting your PESCI and applying to AHPRA.
(a) If you have AMC Part 1 & Part 2, you apply for APRI-30 (Provisional AHPRA). You are able to take your PESCI prior to applying for this application.
(b) If you have your AMC Part 1 only & you have 3 years assessed experience (it isn’t required to be assessed by RACGP, but AHPRA will conduct a similar assessment so this ensures you are safe!), you can apply for AANG-30 (Limited AHPRA- Area of Need). The clinic will need to apply for an Area of Need certificate. You will apply to AHPRA before taking a PESCI in this instance.
(c) If you have your AMC Part 1 only and cannot meet the experience requirement for AANG-30 then you can apply for ALPS-30 (Limited AHPRA- Post Graduate Training / Supervised Practice). There is no guarantee that AHPRA will not take your experience into consideration in this application. You will need to develop a full training plan for this position, including the purpose, anticipated duration, location, content and structure of training and the anticipated date of any examinations or assessments. You are able to take your PESCI prior to applying for this application.
Step 5 – Visa or 3GA?
Once you’ve received your AHPRA registration, you can apply for your visa (if you’re a temporary resident) or 3GA program (If you are PR /Citizen). This is why it is important to have identified whether your practice can sponsor your visa, or that the practice meets your 19AA / 19AB requirements prior to starting the process.
Step 6 – Medicare Provider Number
Finally, you apply for a Medicare Provider Number. This allows you to bulk bill your patients where required and allows them to get a rebate back from the government after they have seen you, if your clinic privately bills its patients.
So, if you’ve followed these 6 steps then you’ll be off to a good start. There are hurdles to jump through and bridges to cross but ultimately, there are pathways to get you to where you need to be.
We Can Help You
Here at People Medical Consulting, we have a passion for guiding medical practitioners through their career pathways to Australia. We have extensive experience in assisting medical facilities in recruiting doctors from local and overseas who will best suit their requirements.
We provide Document Assistance for those requiring support for their PESCI with IME, ACRRM or RACGP, registration and all other mandatory AHPRA requirements, fellowship program related forms and letters, application for Medicare provider and prescriber numbers, application for 19AB or 19AA exemptions and preparation of employment documents.
If you’re looking for assistance, contact us at email@example.com and we would be glad to help you.