Specialist Physicians diagnose and treat internal human disorders and diseases using specialist testing, diagnostic and medical techniques. Medical Registrars training as Specialist Physicians are included here.

    A bachelor degree in medicine, plus on-the-job training, is needed to work as a Specialist Physician. Many Specialist Physicians complete postgraduate studies.

    Tasks

    • examining patients to determine the nature and extent of problems after referral from General Medical Practitioners and other medical specialists, and undertaking laboratory tests and diagnostic procedures
    • analysing test results and other medical information to make diagnoses
    • prescribing and administering drugs, and remedial and therapeutic treatment and procedures
    • recording medical information and data
    • reporting specified contagious and notifiable diseases to government health and immigration authorities
    • may admit or refer patients to hospitals
    • may consult other medical specialists

    All Specialist Physicians

    • $4,976 Weekly Pay
    • Moderate Future Growth
    • Lower unemployment Unemployment
    • 7,200 workers Employment Size
    • Very high skill Skill level rating
    • 79% Full-Time Full-Time Share
    • 50 hours Average full-time
    • 43 years Average age
    • 43% female Gender Share

    The number of people working as Specialist Physicians (in their main job) grew very strongly over the past 5 years and is expected to grow over the next 5 years:
    from 7,200 in 2018 to 7,700 by 2023.
    Job openings can come from new jobs being created, but most come from turnover (workers leaving).
    There are likely to be around 2,000 job openings over 5 years (that's about 400 a year).

    • Size: This is a small occupation.
    • Unemployment: Unemployment was below average in 2018.
    • Location: Specialist Physicians work in many regions of Australia.
    • Industries: Most work in the Health Care and Social Assistance industry.
    • Earnings: Full-time workers on an adult wage earn around $4,976 per week (very high compared to the average of $1,460). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
    • Full-time: Many work full-time (79%, higher than the average of 66%).
    • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 50 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
    • Age: The average age is 43 years (compared to the average of 40 years).
    • Gender: 43% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

    Employment Outlook

    Number of Workers

    Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2018 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2023.
    YearNumber of Workers
    20084700
    20096000
    20104400
    20117600
    20127000
    20136200
    20148400
    20158400
    20165500
    20179600
    20187200
    20237700

    Weekly Earnings

    Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

    Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours (cat. no. 6306.0), May 2018, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
    EarningsSpecialist PhysiciansAll Jobs Average
    Full-Time Earnings49761460

    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 Assistance96.1
    Public Administration and Safety1.7
    Education and Training0.7
    Professional, Scientific and Technical Services0.6
    Other Industries0.9

    States and Territories

    • NSW

    • VIC

    • QLD

    • SA

    • TAS

    • NT

    • ACT

    Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

    Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    StateSpecialist PhysiciansAll Jobs Average
    NSW31.431.6
    VIC26.925.6
    QLD19.020.0
    SA8.27.0
    WA9.610.8
    TAS2.12.0
    NT1.11.0
    ACT1.81.9

    Age Profile

    Age Profile (% Share)

    Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    Age BracketSpecialist PhysiciansAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    15-190.0-5.05.0
    20-240.3-9.39.3
    25-3418.8-22.922.9
    35-4434.4-22.022.0
    45-5423.2-21.621.6
    55-598.2-9.09.0
    60-646.4-6.06.0
    65 and Over8.7-4.24.2

    Education Level

    Highest Level of Education (% Share)

    Source: ABS, 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 QualificationSpecialist PhysiciansAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate51.0-10.110.1
    Bachelor degree47.9-21.821.8
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma0.5-11.611.6
    Certificate III/IV0.1-21.121.1
    Year 120.5-18.118.1
    Year 110.0-4.84.8
    Year 10 and below0.0-12.512.5

    A bachelor degree in medicine, plus on-the-job training, is needed to work as a Specialist Physician. Many Specialist Physicians complete postgraduate studies.

    Registration with the Medical Board of Australia is needed to work as a Specialist Physician (General Medicine). Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Physicians may be needed to specialise.

    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 Specialist Physicians 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

      90% Skill level

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

    2. Psychology

      87% Skill level

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

    3. Customer and Personal Service

      86% Skill level

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

    4. Therapy and Counseling

      81% Skill level

      Diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and career counselling and guidance.

    5. English Language

      79% Skill level

      English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    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, 29-1063.00 - Internists, General.

    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. Exposed to Disease or Infections

      100% Important

      How often are you exposed to disease/infections?

    2. Face-to-Face Discussions

      100% Important

      How often do you talk with people face-to-face?

    3. Freedom to Make Decisions

      98% Important

      How much freedom do you have to make decision on your own?

    4. Structured versus Unstructured Work

      97% Important

      How much freedom do you have to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals?

    5. Telephone

      96% Important

      How often do you talk on the telephone?

    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, 29-1063.00 - Internists, General.

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