HomeSurgery ArticlesThe Most In-Demand Medical Specialties in Australia

The Most In-Demand Medical Specialties in Australia

Medical professionals are our bread and butter. From nurses to paramedics, doctors and surgeons, we need these individuals to keep us healthy and get us out of danger. As such, it’s no surprise that there is an ever-increasing demand for medical professionals worldwide—from understaffed hospitals to developing countries.

As with most nations, many people aspire to be a doctor in Australia. While becoming a doctor can take years of study and dedication, other medical professions can usually be acquired with relative ease and often faster than becoming a doctor. Here are Australia’s most in-demand medical specialties

1. Physiotherapists

When you think of physiotherapists, you probably imagine chiropractors and Pilates instructors, but there’s more to their field than that. After receiving at least five years of education, physiotherapists help patients recover from illness or injury by targeting physical ailments and educating them on avoiding future problems. They can also help treat minor problems like burns or sprains without seeing a doctor. Because they deal with so many different issues, these professionals must communicate clearly and empathise with each patient; compassion is an essential part of the job.

In exchange for helping people improve their quality of life, physiotherapists are well-compensated: as of 2014, median annual wages ranged between $86,000 and $102,000 per year. The skyrocketing need for medical professionals means that being a great communicator will likely put you in high demand—and ensure that you’re well compensated.

2. Anaesthetists

According to recent statistics, anaesthetists are among Australia’s highest-paid medical professionals, with an average salary of $244,000. Since 2011, there has been a high demand for anaesthetists; by 2020, there will be a lack of about 250 Australian anaesthetists. To become an anaesthetist, you must complete a bachelor degree in medicine before undertaking three years of specialist training.

 To become an anaesthetist, you must complete a bachelor degree in medicine before undertaking three years of specialist training. Before you can work as an anaesthetist, you must register with The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA). With both a bachelor’s degree and registration from AHPRA, one will be eligible to practice as an anaesthetist.

3. Orthopaedic Surgeons

The Orthopaedic Surgeon treats joint disorders and injuries, such as hip replacement and knee surgery. They’re a go-to doctor when injuries have led to severe impairment. Orthopaedic surgeons work closely with general surgeons, anaesthesiologists, physical therapists and occupational therapists to care for their patients. Doctors often perform surgery on people of all ages: infants, children, adults and seniors. While advanced training is required to become a specialist surgeon, specialists must first complete an undergraduate degree before medical school.

Orthopaedic surgeons are increasingly being sought after by private practices, and some even run their own. Depending on where they work, orthopaedic surgeons can earn up to $400,000 a year. They’re also paid well by public hospitals. The starting salary for junior doctors is approximately $90,000 per year. The average annual income of an orthopaedic surgeon ranges from $138,000 to $400,000 per year.

4. Plastic Surgeons

This is another on-demand medical profession in Australia. According to data from 2017, it is one of Australia’s highest-paid medical specialties. The field of surgery has seen a significant surge in demand within recent years as more and more Australians are concerned about their looks and how their bodies age over time. Plastic surgeons assist patients with correcting certain parts of their bodies that they feel are unattractive to them, e.g. breast augmentation.

Plastic Surgeons also contribute significantly to patients who have undergone traumatic accidents; reconstructive surgery can allow people who have suffered burns or extreme injuries, such as those caused by car accidents, to restore some normalcy into their lives.

5. Emergency Medicine Doctors

The Australian Medical Workforce Survey reported a trend toward over-recruitment of doctors and specialists, with more positions than applicants. Emergency Medicine Doctors are now one of Australia’s highest paid medical specialties. If you are looking to study medicine, you may want to consider enrolling in an emergency medicine degree online. They are always recruiting new graduates for roles within their team at hospitals across Australia.

Becoming an Emergency Medicine Doctor might be just what you need. Not only will it provide you with a rewarding career but also a high paying salary at around AUD$222,000 for emergency medicine doctors. This can increase to up to AUD$280,000 for some individuals with more experience within their field.

6. Cardiologists

While cardiologists are medical doctors and surgeons, they often specialise in diagnosing, treating and preventing heart conditions. The best part about working as a cardiologist is that it’s one of the most lucrative medical specialties. A 2014 Australian Bureau of Statistics report found that, on average, an orthopaedic surgeon earns $173,370 per year, making it one of the highest-paid medical specialties for doctors.

Cardiologists aren’t far behind at $171,240 per year. The field is expected to grow by 18 per cent by 2026, and it’s one of the most popular medical professions for women. More importantly, cardiology represents only five per cent of expenditure compared to other parts of a healthcare system. This means that if you have a heart condition or want to become a cardiologist, there will be plenty of money to go around as more people need help.

7. Obstetricians and Gynaecologists

Obstetricians and Gynaecologists are some of the highest paid professionals when it comes to medical careers. Obstetrics & Gynaecology is a sub-specialty area of medicine encompassing reproductive health and women’s healthcare. As you can imagine, these highly skilled individuals are in high demand throughout Australia. Many are attracted to work in rural and regional areas where Obstetricians and Gynaecologists may be limited or hard to find.

Obstetricians and Gynaecologists assist with pregnancy, birth, and post-partum care; they also specialise in treating gynaecological diseases such as menstrual disorders and abnormal uterine bleeding (metrorrhagia), menorrhagia, endometriosis, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, ovarian dysfunction, pelvic pain (pain during intercourse or dyspareunia) and infertility. They can perform surgery for various gynaecological issues, such as removing fibroids.

8. Psychiatrists

Psychiatrists have high earning potential, with an average salary of $279,000 per year. Not only is it one of Australia’s highest-paid medical specialties, but it’s also one of its most sought-after careers: psychiatrists were ranked #3 on a list of medical professions in demand by VIT University students.

If you’re interested in earning a high salary while helping patients heal their mental health problems, then it may be time to consider a career as a psychiatrist. Psychiatrists are one of Australia’s highest-paid medical specialists at an average salary of $279,000 per year.

9. Ophthalmologists

Australia’s ageing population is creating a higher demand for ophthalmologists. As people live longer, they require more care for eye-related problems. The Australian Government has forecast that by 2031, there will be an increase of 43% in doctors with sub-specialty training such as ophthalmology. If you are interested in helping patients maintain healthy eyes, becoming an ophthalmologist might be your dream career.

An ophthalmologist is a medical professional specially trained to diagnose and treat conditions related to vision and eye health. These doctors are responsible for performing eye examinations, prescribing glasses, and ordering tests to remove cataracts.

10. Gastroenterologists

As a gastroenterologist, you’ll be able to treat digestive diseases that include ulcers, bowel diseases, gallstones and inflammatory bowel disease. These specialists also treat patients with pancreatic cancer and cirrhosis of the liver. The average salary for gastroenterologists is $180,000 per year.

With a median salary of $180,000 per year, gastroenterologists are among some of Australia’s highest-paid professionals. The gender breakdown for gastroenterologists is 58% male and 42% female, which is higher than most medical specialties. Gastroenterology was also among the top medical careers in future growth prospects.


In a country where healthcare is provided under a universal health care model, it makes sense that many medical professionals would choose to settle in Australia. Medical professionals with their skills are in high demand and considered a valuable resource to the well-being of Australians. The Australian Government is one of the largest employers of medical professionals, so the opportunities are endless.


1. Why do so many medical professionals choose to move to Australia?

Because we have the most well-structured system globally, Australian medical jobs are in high demand. Many doctors in Australia come from other countries to enjoy the lifestyle and access to facilities and high-paying opportunities.

2. Why is there such a high demand for GPs?

There are several reasons why there is such a high demand for general practitioners in Australia. One is that people live longer these days than they did 20 years ago and are ageing.

3. What Is the Salary Range for These Jobs?

The salary range for these jobs varies considerably depending on the specialty area and amount of experience.

4. Why are these specialities in demand?

These specialties are in demand because Australia has an ageing population, which causes more significant demand for health care services


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