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    RussianJoo's Avatar
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    How hard is it to get licensed to practice medicine in Austarlia?

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    If I am a fully licensed physician in the USA what would I have to do to be able to practice medicine in Australia? Do I have to retake board exams or do the USMLE's transfer over or can be used as an equivalence? What about residency, do I have to redo a residency or will my US residency training count as an equivalent to an Australian residency?

    I want to move to Australia for a few years just to experience the culture.


    thanks in advance for your responses.
    Hollywood Upstairs School of Medicology, Class of 2010
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    dadoc is offline Member 510 points
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    Your qualifications mean nothing in Australia. You will have to sit the Australian exam (forgot the name). They honestly make life for US doctors hell.

    Goodluck.

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    RussianJoo's Avatar
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    thanks.. I guess I'll just have to move there for a few weeks instead of years..

    cheers!
    Hollywood Upstairs School of Medicology, Class of 2010
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    jp9094 is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    License to practice in Australia

    "Dadoc" is wrong. If you have all the USMLE steps and the ECFMG certificate you are exempt from the AMC (Australian Medical Council) exams.

    You will, however, be required to work for a year under supervision (ie in a hospital). If successfull you get full registration but you will only be able to practice in rural, remote or under served areas (you cannot get a provider number for 10 years).

    Check the AMC web site to verify this!

    FWIW.
    "It's what you learn, after you know it all, that counts".

    Harry S. Truman

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    dadoc is offline Member 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by jp9094 View Post
    "Dadoc" is wrong. If you have all the USMLE steps and the ECFMG certificate you are exempt from the AMC (Australian Medical Council) exams.

    You will, however, be required to work for a year under supervision (ie in a hospital). If successfull you get full registration but you will only be able to practice in rural, remote or under served areas (you cannot get a provider number for 10 years).

    Check the AMC web site to verify this!

    FWIW.
    Exactly... They make hell for the US doctors. Practicing in rural populations isnt exactly the best thing, nay, it is an insult to a US physician who has been trained to take of more than a few people.

    Also, regardless of your speciality, chances are you wont be able to practice it, thats why most foreign doctors simply stay in family medicine in Aus.

    Oh, and did we forget to mention that the AMC has a 40% pass rate? No doctor trained in Australia has taken the exam, yet, if it were given to them, the majority of them wouldnt pass.

    In laments terms, Australian medicine is for Australian doctors.

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    WendyMBBS is offline Permanently Banned 517 points
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    I concur, Australia is not an easy place to practice. The medical profession in Australia just sucks compared to the US, you are basically a doormat. Its actually a lot harder to get into Dental school than Medical school in Australia, reason is $$$$, Dentists earn a better living, work less, and the lower classes cannot afford Dentists.

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    M.D.ominican is offline Newbie 510 points
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    I agree with both the above statements, however Wendy, dont forget that Doctor is still a prestigous title, so it is very difficult to get into either Medicine or Dentistry. However, anyone with half a brain would choose dentistry over medicine in Australia. Unless you truly want to be a doctor for a real purpose, in which case, working in Australia would be rather stupid seeing as all the patients are elderly or obese.

    Let me add in the final kicker, seeing as I went though the Australian High School system. The only subjects required to get into medicine are Chemistry and Maths. Thats right, no biology.

    Also, Australia tries to place all of its students on a Standard normal curve, the top being able to get into the best tertiary subjects. Now just so you know, there is no differntiation between a student that takes, lets say, Maths, Chemistry and English and one that takes Maths, Chem, Biology, physics and english. So, if you get A in 3 subjects, its still worth more if you get an A- in 5 subjects.

    No wonder their system is so screwed. They are still accepting undergrads into Medicine....

  8. #8
    Lyndal PN's Avatar
    Lyndal PN is offline School Official 511 points
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    I tend to sit back and not comment, but I feel I should say something as I find this whole phenomena fascinating.

    When people are asking for real information, I wonder why so many unhappy people choose to post so much negative tripe on forums like this. Generalisations, emotive descriptions and lack of facts tend to prevail and I personally find it very frustrating at the least and at times downright offensive.

    Yes it is difficult to move your degree anywhere - US to Oz, Oz to US etc etc.. medicine around the world is just not as transportable as any of us would like it to be. However, if you are interested in practising in Australia I would suggest you do a lot of investigating and reading and talking to a range of people- some of whom are happy here, rather than those who are obviously unhappy or who have had limited personal experience in the topic. (I can put you in touch with some people if you'd like). From a personal view point, rural medicine can be some of the most emotionally and intellectually challenging that you can do - be it in rural Australia or rural USA or Canada, and I find interesting the assumption I have read in several places in this forum that because Australia's population is smaller that you will deal with a "few people" and not learn as much or see as much. While the population is smaller, the workload is often much higher in rural areas with more acute, complex and chronic medicine than you will every see in city medicine.And the patients are" ALL elderly or obese?" pulllleeeaasee...... what happens to all the children or babies or pregnant women or young men??? Do they just not exist? Dont make assumptions that your medical career would be easy, limited, insulting (!!) or boring if you are not in the Mayo clinic.

    Yes, many Australian medical schools admit undergraduates- as do those in the UK, most of Asia and Europe. There is little evidence (if any) that graduate programmes produce "better" doctors, they are simply different educational models. As someone who graduated from an undergraduate programme, and now teaches in a graduate programme, there are definite benefits in going graduate. But again I find it amusing that it is considered backwards to teach school leavers medicine. Ahhh... then most of the Western world must be backward! Of course! Im not even going to comment on the whole argument that Australian grads couldnt pass the AMC exams... hmmm why are you even posting in a thread about Australian schools when you obviously have so much disdain and disrespect for their educational process, quality and outcomes??

    I better get off my soapbox before I get too carried away... but PLEASE readers take every post on here (including mine) with a grain of salt. There are positives and negatives about every country, every medical profession and every experience.... find out more and make choices that suit you. I would love to see more facts on these topics and would be happy to provide links to anyone interested in finding objective information.

    Cheers
    Lyndal
    Assoc Prof Lyndal Parker-Newlyn
    Associate Professor: Medical Education
    Academic Leader: Admissions & Selection

    Graduate School of Medicine
    University of Wollongong
    Wollongong NSW AUSTRALIA

  9. #9
    dadoc is offline Member 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lyndal PN View Post
    I tend to sit back and not comment, but I feel I should say something as I find this whole phenomena fascinating.

    When people are asking for real information, I wonder why so many unhappy people choose to post so much negative tripe on forums like this. Generalisations, emotive descriptions and lack of facts tend to prevail and I personally find it very frustrating at the least and at times downright offensive.

    Yes it is difficult to move your degree anywhere - US to Oz, Oz to US etc etc.. medicine around the world is just not as transportable as any of us would like it to be. However, if you are interested in practising in Australia I would suggest you do a lot of investigating and reading and talking to a range of people- some of whom are happy here, rather than those who are obviously unhappy or who have had limited personal experience in the topic. (I can put you in touch with some people if you'd like). From a personal view point, rural medicine can be some of the most emotionally and intellectually challenging that you can do - be it in rural Australia or rural USA or Canada, and I find interesting the assumption I have read in several places in this forum that because Australia's population is smaller that you will deal with a "few people" and not learn as much or see as much. While the population is smaller, the workload is often much higher in rural areas with more acute, complex and chronic medicine than you will every see in city medicine.And the patients are" ALL elderly or obese?" pulllleeeaasee...... what happens to all the children or babies or pregnant women or young men??? Do they just not exist? Dont make assumptions that your medical career would be easy, limited, insulting (!!) or boring if you are not in the Mayo clinic.

    Yes, many Australian medical schools admit undergraduates- as do those in the UK, most of Asia and Europe. There is little evidence (if any) that graduate programmes produce "better" doctors, they are simply different educational models. As someone who graduated from an undergraduate programme, and now teaches in a graduate programme, there are definite benefits in going graduate. But again I find it amusing that it is considered backwards to teach school leavers medicine. Ahhh... then most of the Western world must be backward! Of course! Im not even going to comment on the whole argument that Australian grads couldnt pass the AMC exams... hmmm why are you even posting in a thread about Australian schools when you obviously have so much disdain and disrespect for their educational process, quality and outcomes??

    I better get off my soapbox before I get too carried away... but PLEASE readers take every post on here (including mine) with a grain of salt. There are positives and negatives about every country, every medical profession and every experience.... find out more and make choices that suit you. I would love to see more facts on these topics and would be happy to provide links to anyone interested in finding objective information.

    Cheers
    Lyndal
    To address the first thing, which is in bold and underlined. I assume childcare is a pediatric speciality? Are you considering specialities. I think the person was talking internal and surgical rather than family med.

    I also disagree with the undergraduate system. Theres an exam in Australia that I think is called the UMAT (correct me if I am wrong) which is just based on problem solving. It has no relevance to whether the candidate can comprehend biological idea's, which makes a rather useless test, especially if it is for undergrads.

    The graduate system is a much better indicator as to who is a better candidate. The MCAT exam sets the bar for knowledge that is a prerequisite into medicine. I know that Australia accepts med students with graduate degrees which correlates with a certain science exam. That certain system garuntees that the candidate wants to study medicine, rather than just get in because they could.

    Its a flawed system in my view.

  10. #10
    Lyndal PN's Avatar
    Lyndal PN is offline School Official 511 points
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    Thanks for your views on undergrad vs postgrad and of course I respect your opinion on that. The bottom line is, there is little evidence either way. Grad med feels right to most Americans as it is the way it has always been done; conversely UK, Australia etc has always done undergrad med until a few years ago. Australia now runs both systems and I am still yet to see the clear flaws that you discuss. I think there are advantages in studying medicine as a graduate, just as I enjoy teaching graduates - but take care to discount UG medicine as it is the way it has been done for centuries across much of the world and I am yet to be convinced that it is wrong.

    Lyndal
    Assoc Prof Lyndal Parker-Newlyn
    Associate Professor: Medical Education
    Academic Leader: Admissions & Selection

    Graduate School of Medicine
    University of Wollongong
    Wollongong NSW AUSTRALIA

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