To practise as a specialist in Australia, you must have postgraduate qualifications and appropriate clinical experience in one of the medical specialties recognised by the Australian Medical Council (AMC).

Check with the Medical Board in the State or Territory in which you wish to work in to find out how they describe your field of medical expertise.

(Not all State and Territory Medical Boards recognise general practice (family medicine) as a field of specialist practice, although it is in the AMC list.)

Medical Board of Australia

Prevocational positions

If you don’t have qualifications in one of the AMC recognised specialties, contact the Medical Boards as you may be eligible to practise with conditional registration in a prevocational position.

AMC list of recognised specialties
Specialist Medical Colleges

Private practice

Specialists who work in Australian public hospitals are paid a salary by the government. They may also have the right to private practice, which allows them to treat private patients as part of their own practice.
An overseas trained specialist wishing to work in private practice must first obtain:
    • medical registration in their specialty
    • a Medicare provider number to allow delivery of services attracting a Medicare benefit. (Patients will expect to be able to access Medicare benefits.)
In most cases, specialists treat patients who’ve been referred to them by another doctor, usually a GP (family physician). Referral by another doctor is one of the requirements for specialist services to attract Medicare benefits at a specialist’s rate.

Medicare provider number application form

Fellowship with a Specialist Medical College

If you achieve recognition of equivalency of your specialist qualifications by an Australian Specialist Medical College, you may wish to pursue fellowship with that College. Contact the relevant College directly to find out the conditions for fellowship.

Specialist Medical Colleges