It might seem initially that working as a rural GP in Australia is not the best career choice but actually, that is not the case. There are a lot of benefits to choosing to work in a rural place and there are also incentives offered to choose this over urban positions. There is a lot of growth you can enjoy, you can get to know the community you are there to help and there is the chance of having more free time while earning more! You can find areas that have lower levels of GP services by looking at the DPA classification system. This is where the initiatives to get more doctors to areas in need will be implemented. This system looks at the socio-economic status of people living in that specific area, the age and gender of Medicare billings and also how remote it is using MMM classification.
Rural communities is where you are needed
Many people in Australia’s heartlands do not have access to healthcare and have to travel for many kilometres when they need it. If your goal is to help those who are truly in need then heading to a community that is rural is the way to go.
Enjoy earning a better income
With help from initiatives like the DPA classification system if you choose to head to such a location you can get a higher pay. The government wants doctors to help fill the gap and offer money as part of the benefit of choosing a more remote location. A great addition to that is usually you work fewer hours compared to city doctors so you have a much better balanced life. Doctors who explore rural healthcare are more likely to buy their own houses and go on larger vacations.
Enjoy being more connected to the community you serve
Community is important when you live rurally and a doctor that moves into that will be a central part of that. You are there for births, deaths, and everything in between. You will build a connection with your patients that is very special. There will be a greater sense of satisfaction in your daily life. These will be people you also see at other community events, talk to and build relationships with.
Challenge yourself with something new
It is easy to get into a rut especially when working in a faster-paced urban setting where you do not have a chance to lift up your head to look around. With a rural job, you can challenge yourself professionally and personally. You will see much more of a wider range of health concerns, some specific to living in a rural community. You will find you are using more of the skills you learned in school than you ever thought. Even if you choose not to lay down roots it is a good thing to have on your resume that you helped for a time in an area labeled by the DPA classification system as being in need.