Discussing test results with a patient
To become a consultant physician, you usually have to study medicine at university followed by a minimum of 12 months' full-time employment (internship/residency) at a recognised teaching hospital. This is followed by at least 6 years' postgraduate training, administered by The Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP), in your specific area of interest.
To get into medicine, you will need to pass your TCE and have good results in English, maths, physics and chemistry. Different universities have different subjects and cut-off scores, and some have flexible entry requirements, so contact the universities you are interested in for more information.
You may be able to study through distance education. Contact your chosen institution or Open Learning Australia for more information (see the Further Education and Training section for further details).
Refer to the Medical Practitioner entry for details of medical degrees.
Following satisfactory completion of the training program, graduates may be awarded a Fellowship of The Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) and/or membership of other professional bodies specific to their field of practice.
Consultant physicians are employed primarily in hospitals and private practice. They may work in private practice on their own, in partnership with another physician, or in a group practice.
Employment opportunities depend on a variety of factors such as birth and death rates, population levels and movements, changing patterns of illness and injury, technological advances in health care, the trend towards preventative medicine and the cost to the patient of treatment and health insurance.