My Journey Starting in Australia
GP requests to stay anonymous, currently happily working on Level 2 Supervision in Australia
I first came to Australia to complete my Masters and continued doing health related courses so that I could stay. While studying, to cover my tuition and living expenses, I worked as an Assistant in Nursing – many weeks, I would work more than 65 hours a week.
I studied and passed my AMC MCQ Exam and my English Language Exam and I started my search for an observership which would hopefully lead to a job.
I managed to gain the support of one hospital specialist however their medical clerk set me a list of conditions I must meet before I could observe. I met each one!
I interviewed extensively at hospitals. I think it was tough because I didn’t have Permanent Residency and this was something they ideally wanted.
Having completed my observership in the hospital, I started applying for GP observerships, which is my true passion.
Many said no – I persevered, waiting for one to say yes – and they did! I would observe for 2 – 3 days each week. I didn’t want to observe full time and be a burden on my mentor. I felt that as an observer, it may not be good to for his patients and patient flow as some patients may not like someone to be there or even the GP who may not feel good that I am there watching him all the time.
Then the day came that I was successful in gaining a GP job.
I passed my PESCI and felt I had finally gotten through all the hurdles.
It was a long journey and I feel like I learnt so much! I learnt that during Observerships, you should make sure you are not a guest – you need to think you are there to help as a type of wards person and do things while learning the hospital system of Australia. Always be ready to manage patients physically, push their trolley or wheel chair. This is one of the ways to impress your consultant, who would think you are hardworking and they may take you in, or even be your referee. Always be there on time, especially for rounds. I used to be there even on weekends and still mange my work after the observership.
What I learnt is that you should help everyone even if you don’t know them as you never know when you can be helped in return. That doesn’t mean you are expecting help from everyone you talk with.
Lastly – join PHN, do CPD as much as possible so it may not directly cover your gap but it would help show you’ve been working hard while waiting for a job and help with registration. Go to local hospitals for your CPD programs if one offers it.