New Visa “Certificate” for GPs to be introduced on Monday March 11th

The new visa regulation for overseas trained GPs is now due to be implemented from Monday 11th March 2019.

The requirement for a visa sponsor (ie the GP clinic in Australia) to arrange a “certificate” as a condition of being able to get a visa is directly targeted at UK, Irish and NZ-trained GPs.

The aim is to reduce the number of these GPs coming into the “well-serviced major capital cities and metropolitan areas”, directing them instead to “rural, remote and regional areas where there is greater need”.

The aim is to reduce the number of OTD GPs by 200 per year. Bearing in mind that over the period January 2010 to November 2016, the RACGP registered approximately 1800 UK, Irish and NZ GPs – an average of 257 per year – this new system is aiming to reduce the number of GPs going to Australia by over 75%. (source for number of GPs going to Australia: RACGP External Consultation Paper on the proposed 2017 Specialist Pathway Registration Changes. (Copy available on request))

It remains to be seen how this plays out in practice – will the impact be as major as it looks at first reading or will the pressure to find GPs to work in suburban areas (where there is still considerable demand and there are a large number of practices who are very keen to recruit), mean that the implementation is watered down. We will post updates as soon as we hear.

In the meantime, if you have a job in Australia (or you want one), there is still time (just) for the clinic to arrange sponsorship prior to the March 11th deadline.

Also, as far as we can see, this measure does not impact on GPs who are going to Australia as the partner of visa holder (ie if your partner has a (non GP) job for which his / her employer is sponsoring a visa, then you can work freely in Australia – and you are not restricted by this requirement

This link is to the document on the Department of Health website: Visas for GPs initiative – March 2019




I decided to make the move to Australia in December 2011 to work as a GP. It had always been an ambition of mine to move out there. In all honesty though I had no idea where to start. I searched online and emailed an agency. Paul emailed me back straight away with a lot of initial information and we arranged to talk. After a long discussion with him (he was very patient as I had a LOT of questions), to cut a long story short he sent me a lot of information about available jobs and how to make the move. I basically let Paul know the jobs I was interested in and he gave me more info and set up interviews (this all happened very quickly). Anyhow after the interview (for the job I liked) I was offered the job and accepted the contract. As I discovered a little bit at a time moving to Australia can be very time consuming and difficult with all the procedures and paperwork needed. Paul also put me in touch with Monique who is based in Australia. So I now basically had 2 contacts to ask questions. As I mentioned previously I had a lot of questions. I can’t even begin to describe how helpful and easy it was to communicate with them both. If I had a question, or if there was a problem it was sorted out asap. Moving to Australia as a doctor is hard, but Paul and Monique made it so easy for me, it was just more time consuming than difficult (collecting all the paperwork). Had I tried to do this without them I would have struggled an awful lot. Not only do they help you with the medical paperwork, they will also give advice on living in Australia and also help with other things that will need to be done to facilitate the move. They will talk you through every thing that needs to be done in a manner that makes things seem straightforward!

Now I’m here, I still have contact and the little things and attention to detail, such as phone calls to see how I’m settling in is amazing. I love the place, the job and I don’t think i would be here now without their help.

I can quite honestly say this is a fantastic service and i would recommend it to anybody! They will talk you through every thing that needs to be done.
Dr Graham