Anaesthetists provide direct medical care to patients requiring general or local anaesthesia for surgical, diagnostic and other procedures such as prevention of pain and maintenance of body function. Anaesthetic Registrars training as Anaesthetists are included here.

Specialisations: Intensive Care Anaesthetist, Obstetric Anaesthetist, Pain Management Specialist.

You need to be a qualified Medical Practitioner and then complete further training with the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists before you can specialise as an Anaesthetist. Many Anaesthetists complete postgraduate studies.

Tasks

  • performing pre-operative examinations of patients to determine appropriate anaesthetic and sedation in concurrence with Internal Medicine Specialists and Surgeons
  • discussing the anaesthetic process with patients and obtaining their informed consent prior to surgery
  • administering local, regional and general anaesthetics using a variety of methods such as inhalational and intravenous administration
  • supervising the transfer of patients to operating theatres, positioning on operating tables, keeping patients warm, and responding quickly and accurately if any problems arise
  • monitoring patients throughout surgical procedures and in immediate post-operative procedures
  • recording details of anaesthetic and sedation administered, and the condition of patients before, during and after anaesthesia
  • liaising with other health care workers to provide diagnosis and treatment for patients with chronic pain, and to diagnose and treat patients requiring intensive care or resuscitation
  • may instruct medical, nursing, student and ancillary staff on the signs, symptoms and diagnosis of allergic and anaphylactic reactions to anaesthetic agents, and supervision and treatment of life threatening emergencies

All Anaesthetists

  • Unavailable Weekly Pay
  • Strong Future Growth
  • Unavailable Unemployment
  • 3,100 workers Employment Size
  • Very high skill Skill level rating
  • 81% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 47 hours Average full-time
  • 44 years Average age
  • 33% female Gender Share

The number of people working as Anaesthetists (in their main job) grew moderately over 5 years:
from 2,900 in 2014 to 3,100 in 2019.

Caution: The Australian jobs market is changing in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. These estimates do not take account of the impact of COVID-19. They may not reflect the current jobs market and should be used and interpreted with extreme caution.

  • Size: This is a small occupation.
  • Location: Anaesthetists work in many regions of Australia.
  • Industries: Most work in the Health Care and Social Assistance industry.
  • Full-time: Most work full-time (81%, much higher than the average of 66%).
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 47 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 44 years (compared to the average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 33% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Caution: The 2019 employment projections do not take account of any impact caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and are therefore no longer reflective of current labour market conditions. As such, they should be used, and interpreted, with extreme caution. Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, National Skills Commission trend data to May 2019 and projections to 2024.
YearNumber of Workers
20092600
20104200
20113700
20123100
20133200
20142900
20154300
20164000
20173600
20185300
20193100
20243400

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Health Care and Social Assistance99.1
Public Administration and Safety0.8
Wholesale Trade0.1
Education and Training0.1

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateAnaesthetistsAll Jobs Average
NSW30.031.6
VIC24.525.6
QLD21.120.0
SA7.87.0
WA11.510.8
TAS2.42.0
NT0.91.0
ACT1.91.9

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketAnaesthetistsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.0-5.05.0
20-240.1-9.39.3
25-3417.6-22.922.9
35-4434.4-22.022.0
45-5425.3-21.621.6
55-5910.0-9.09.0
60-646.7-6.06.0
65 and Over6.0-4.24.2

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationAnaesthetistsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate48.1-10.110.1
Bachelor degree50.0-21.821.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma1.3-11.611.6
Certificate III/IV0.0-21.121.1
Year 120.5-18.118.1
Year 110.0-4.84.8
Year 10 and below0.0-12.512.5

You need to be a qualified Medical Practitioner and then complete further training with the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists before you can specialise as an Anaesthetist. Many Anaesthetists complete postgraduate studies.

Registration with the Medical Board of Australia is needed to work as a Anaesthetist. Membership with the Australian Society of Anaesthetists may also be useful.

Checks, licences and tickets

You may need:

  • national police check
  • working with children check
  • be up to date with immunisations

Thinking about study or training?

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Search and compare thousands of higher education courses, and their entry requirements from different institutions across Australia at Course Seeker website.
  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.

Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

Useful links and resources


The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Anaesthetists who are caring, compassionate, empathetic and work well in a team.

Filter Skills & Knowledge

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Medicine and dentistry

    92% Skill level

    Diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities, including preventive health-care measures.

  2. Biology

    72% Skill level

    Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.

  3. Psychology

    67% Skill level

    Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.

  4. Customer and personal service

    66% Skill level

    Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  5. Chemistry

    63% Skill level

    Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 29-1061.00 - Anesthesiologists.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Filter Work Environment

Demands

The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

  1. Face-to-face discussions

    99% Important

    Talk with people face-to-face.

  2. Indoors, heat controlled

    98% Important

    Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.

  3. Being exact or accurate

    97% Important

    Be very exact or highly accurate.

  4. Contact with people

    96% Important

    Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.

  5. Physically close to people

    95% Important

    Work physically close to other people.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 29-1061.00 - Anesthesiologists.

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