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Get an MBBS, become an Aussie

Discussion in 'Australasia and Oceania' started by Jaider, Nov 27, 2005.

  1. Jaider

    Jaider Senior Member
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    Hey guys,

    Several years ago I was looking into getting an MBBS at USyd and came across an online forum where Americans USyd students were complaining about how hard it is to become an Australian citizen-- to the effect that as soon as they were finished with their MBBS, Oz wasn't interested in granting them citizenship and promptly kicked them out.

    I always thought that Australia was saturated with doctors (at least on the coasts), so I'm surprised that SDN is littered with DoctorConnect ads.

    Are any of you internationals interested in becoming a permanent resident and remaining in Australia when you're finished with your MBBS? Have you looked into this and do you have a sense of how difficult it will be? (I've done graduate studies in Australia, but fell short of the time requirement to earn myself PR status).

    Thanks mates. :)
     
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  3. Jaider

    Jaider Senior Member
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    Oops, I just spotted a similar immigration thread down below, but you can respond to my thread too if you'd like. :laugh:
     
  4. Health_grl

    Health_grl New Member

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    Hi, I don't know much about gaining citizenship in Aus..... I was born an Aussie so I've never had to think about it. However I just wanted to pick up on you saying that Australia is saturated with Drs - its the opposite!!! We have a massive doctor shortage over here, that's why a few more med schools will be opening next yr and the following - ie one in Wollongong, another in Sydney and another in Melbourne. Australia has recently been pushing for more English drs to come over here apparently because there is an over-supply of drs there
     
  5. mcsquare

    mcsquare Member
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    thnx for da info.........nz is out...aus is out...u.s. is out........wer du i study medicine now? :confused:
     
  6. Dr.Millisevert

    Dr.Millisevert Senior Member
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    I had heard about UWS in syd and wollongong, but what school is opening in melb?
     
  7. vlun

    vlun Junior Member
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    yes, this is a real issue for I as a canadian student who would love to go to a aussie school (doesn't matter which one), graduate, and become a family doctor, and then practice inside australia.

    what does it take to be a family doc? extra 2 years on top of the (4, 4.5, 5, 6 years depending on which school u go to)?

    has anyone accomplished these goals? so far I only hear go to the immigration website, but no first hand experience.

    Vinny
     
  8. f_w

    f_w 1K Member
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    For the longest time, official australian immigration policy was to exclude physicians due to a perceived oversupply. Foreign graduates are excluded from obtaining a medicare number (pre-requisite to get paid for your services in private practice) for 10 years. In recent years there has been some softening of these policies, immigration and medicare, but in essence the discrimination against foreign grads is still intact.

    At the same time, the public hospitals in AU are short staffed and are agressively recruiting for physician employees. But the positions they have to offer don't include training and won't allow you to go into private practice afterwards (e.g. by obtaining australian board certification).
     
  9. vlun

    vlun Junior Member
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    I might as well not even bother trying to apply. Ok! Graduate school for me, then apply to the us schools. That looks like my only option.
    Vinny
     
  10. f_w

    f_w 1K Member
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    > I might as well not even bother trying to apply. Ok! Graduate
    > school for me, then apply to the us schools. That looks like my only option.

    I didn't say that. If you went to an aussie medschool, you wouldn't be an 'overseas trained doctor' (their expression for FMG). And some of the restrictions wouldn't apply to you. However, in order to stay after medschool you would have to get permanent resident status somehow. And here is where some of the americans who try to stay in AU apparently fall into some sort of a 'immigration hole'. They don't have the job experience yet to immigrate as physician, but they don't qualify under any other category (but I am sure that with some degree of planning, it should be possible to stay if you wanted to).
     
  11. Jaider

    Jaider Senior Member
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    Thanks for your comments-- it sounds like you really know what you're talking about. Getting PR is indeed tricky. I, for one, actually have an MBA from UOW but when I was awarded my degree immigration had just increased the amount of Aus study time required to earn PR status, and all of my work experience is in science-- not business. So? I think that get's me nowhere. I guess one could always stick to the marry an Aussie route. Too bad my hot Australian ex dumped me. :(
     
  12. Jaider

    Jaider Senior Member
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    Is there demand on the east coast? I thought the demand was mostly rural. U. Wollongong (my alma mater) has a rural focus, right? That was the last I heard...
     
  13. pitman

    pitman Grasshopper
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    For Qld: most of Gold Coast, hospital positions in Brisbane and environs, and regional centres up north (Bundaberg, etc.)
     
  14. f_w

    f_w 1K Member
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    Actually, hotness is only a secondary characteristic in this setting. Willing to go along with the gameplan even if the relationship doesn't work out is key.
     
  15. trkd

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    I have a Canadian friend here at USyd finishing his second year and got residency. No marriage or anything. It can happen. I don't know the process because I have no interest but it is possible. Also, postgrad medical council had some statement put out about a year ago saying that grads from aussie schools could stay for at LEAST a year or two without any problems. I don't know what the process is afterwards.

    And finally, rural docs are needed BAD! There are heaps of places that aren't even too bad as far as population goes (like Broken Hill, 25,000 people) who are hurting for docs and recruiting many from places like India.

    If you want to be a rural GP, I would think they would love to keep you but I don't know the formalities of it all.

    Good luck!
     
  16. Jaider

    Jaider Senior Member
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    Are you referring to staying married the minimum amount of time for the citizenship to be valid? What is that minimum amount of time, by the way. And why do you know so much about this? :)
     
  17. spherical

    spherical Member
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    Former international students are largely limited to CMO positions in unattractive places. It does not matter if and when you become a permanent resident or citizen. The relevant question is question is "were you ever an international student". If "yes", any future as a doctor in Australia will be extremely limited.

    What's a CMO? Career medical officer. It is a "non-training, service-level position". You are an intern for your whole career -- clerking on the wards of hospitals that can not attract real doctors. There is a similar track in the British system. I do not think such a track exists in the N. American systems so there may be some N. Americans unfamiliar with the idea.

    Ironically, if you want to immigrate to Australia and practice medicine, you will have much more opportunitiy if you:

    1) go to medical school and receive postgraduate training outside Australia, or
    2) immigrate prior to applying to medical school in Australia. This is not as hard as some think especially with a good migration agent.

    Australia needs experienced and qualified doctors. They don't need postgraduate trainees. Regardless of later citizenship status, former international students are generally not welcome into specialty training programs.

    You may be able to stay in Australia and be an intern your whole career.
     
  18. pitman

    pitman Grasshopper
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    spherical, have to disagree here -- UQ hasn't had a huge number of int'l grads yet by any means, but several have stayed on in Queensland and specialized. And as far as I know, none has been stuck at the intern level. It could be different in other states, but so far it doesn't seem to be a problem here (whereas GETTING internship in QLD will become harder and harder).
     
  19. f_w

    f_w 1K Member
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    I smell 'Usmedstudent' here.
     
  20. trkd

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    I am with pitman on this one. I have come across many people that came here to Sydney from various places around the world at all different levels of training. I am not sure what all this "stuck as a CMO" business is all about.
     
  21. driedcaribou

    driedcaribou Senior Member
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    Some people in Australia, overseas trained or locally trained, choose to become CMOs because they want to stay in the hospital system but are unwilling to commit the extra time to specialize or want some 'time off' without the pressure of exams to decide what field they enjoy before committing.

    They work in private hospitals, emergency departments etc...

    I wouldn't say they're stuck though- it's their own decision (or fault if they keep failing exams).

    It's less responsibility and a flexible option.


    "
    Medical Officer
    NZ = Medical Officer Special Scale (MOSS).
    Australia = Career Medical Officer (CMO).
    These posts are aimed at those who have sufficient training to act in a senior role but lack formal completion of training which would allow Vocational Registration as a Specialist. Often found in smaller hospitals.
    "

    http://www.southerndoctor.net/glossary.cfm
     
  22. Retinamark

    Retinamark Senior Member
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    I have a friend who is doing CMO type work in private hospitals in Australia. He does a combination of overnight emergency shifts in private hospitals and private surgical assisting & he earns over $100 per hour. Not bad considering he has zero expenses. To earn the same take home pay as a specialist, he would need to earn double that, to pay for secretaries, rent etc. He also has no administrative worries. It's a nice life & he loves it.
    The only down side is not much job security and there is no income upside - ie his income wont grow with time anywhere near as much as it would as a specialist
     
  23. driedcaribou

    driedcaribou Senior Member
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    Thanks for the information!

    Do you know how much an emergency medicine consultant makes in Australia?
     
  24. Retinamark

    Retinamark Senior Member
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    HI, sorry, I'm not sure. It would depend whether you are a full time consultant in a public hospital on an annual salary, or get an hourly rate at a private emergency dept
    They factor in a whole lot of other perks into the annual salary too, cars, phones, conference leave etc so it is hard to compare.
    I imagine it would be around $100 per hour
     
  25. spherical

    spherical Member
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    If you are (or ever were) an international medical student in Australia, you can, for all practical purposes, consider the door to the specialty colleges in Australia CLOSED. If you desire to emigrate and train in a medical specialty in Australia, get PR first! Then, apply to medical school.
     
  26. pitman

    pitman Grasshopper
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    Um, not true, as discussed before. But certainly it's easier with PR first, to help secure internship (can be difficult or even nearly impossible if you're not a resident to get an internship slot depending on what state you're in). But specialization afterwards is far from 'closed'.
     
  27. driedcaribou

    driedcaribou Senior Member
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    Not true. I know of 2 people who are doing Emergency Medicine here from Canada. One went to Undergrad here. The other graduated from a Canadian school.

    That's all I'm going to say to respect their privacy.
     
  28. f_w

    f_w 1K Member
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    spherical sounds like another reincarnation of USMedstudent. This post falls into the same line of trolling.
     
  29. JoeNamaMD

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    Its next to impossible for international medical students to get PR through their medical degree in Australia. First of all, you are not qualified as a medical practitioner until after you complete your training. Students in other health fields don't have this issue. If you're a former international student, you can forget about specialty training after medical school.
    Getting a degree in another field, such as a Master's course will be shorter and you can use it to get PR and then enroll in medical school.
     
  30. Jaider

    Jaider Senior Member
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    I've already done an Master's in Oz (1.5 years) and that would have been sufficient for me to get PR but immigration had just barely increased the study time requirement.

    Okay, new scenario. It turns out I'm going to do my MD in the U.S. So, if I still want to become an Aussie what do I have to do? Do my MD in the U.S., do my residency in the U.S., THEN will Australia let me come over? Or do I still have to rely on marrying an Aussie to get citizenship? And is Australia going to let me work in a private practice if I've completed all of my training in the U.S. or will they restrict me even if I get citizenship through marriage?

    (O.k. I'm going to go back and try to elucidate some info about this from earlier messages. Everyone seems to disagree and it gets confusing! :) Thanks for everyone's input!)
     
  31. FlindersGrad

    FlindersGrad Member
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    There seems to be alot of misinformation out there about working and living in Australia. I don't have all the answers, but I do have some experience with the issue. I am an American who completed med school at Flinders in Adelaide. After graduation, I stayed and worked in Australia for 2.5 years. I have just come back to the US, but most of my US friends from Flinders are still working all around Australia.
    It is certainly possible to stay and work after graduation. A lot of the previous obstecles to staying in Aus have now been lifted (just before I graduated in 2002). I had PR and most of my US friends have PR or are getting it. It is much easier to get as a DR now, and no you do not need years of experience to get it.
    The doors to specialties are not closed either! They may be hard to keep open, but anything is possible. Example, My good US friend from Flinders has PR and is in neurosurgery training. As I said anything is possible if you work hard for it.
    The problem arises when you try to transfer post graduate training to either country. Training is usually not receprical for either country, so you will generally have to start all over, or at least do a few extra years.
    I have a lot more information on the subject, because I've been there and done it. I'm happy to answer questions.
     

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