Highest physician salary Australia 2024 - find out how yours compares

Female Physician - Physician Salary

Physicians, who are trained specialists focusing on adult medicine, are pivotal to the healthcare landscape. The salary that physicians earn in Australia reflects not only their years of intensive training and expertise but also the critical nature of their roles. General medicine specialists have good earning potential in 2024.

Also known as internal medicine doctors or general medicine physicians, there’s plenty of good job opportunities in Australia. The salary for a general medicine specialist in Australia depends on the number of hours you work, your training, and where you work.

Factors determining a physician's salary in Australia in 2024

Multiple aspects can determine a physician's salary in Australia:

Specialisation: Physicians can specialise in a myriad of fields like cardiology, endocrinology, or gastroenterology. Specialties with higher demand or complexity often come with higher compensation.

Experience: As in many professions, a physician's earnings tend to rise with experience. Those in the nascent stages of their careers might earn less than those with decades of patient care and specialisation behind them.

Location: The region where a physician practices significantly impacts their earnings. In areas with a shortage of specialists, such as some rural regions, incentives might be provided to attract skilled physicians.

Type of employment: Salary can vary depending on whether the physician works in a public hospital, private practice, or a specialised clinic.

Working hours: Many physicians, especially in certain specialties, might work beyond standard hours or be on-call. These additional hours can influence their overall compensation.

Average salary insights

On average, a physician in Australia earns between AUD$150,000 to AUD$500,000 annually, contingent upon the factors outlined above. However, there can be significant variance within this range:

Entry-level physicians: In the initial years following their specialisation, physicians might earn between AUD$100,000 to AUD$200,000. This amount sees an uptick as they amass experience, hone their skills, and grow their patient base.

Senior and highly specialised physicians: Those with vast experience or in high-demand specialties can command salaries on the higher end of the average, occasionally even exceeding AUD$500,000, especially if they're involved in intricate procedures or treatments.

Locum doctors are earning up to $4000/day. How does your salary compare? Find out in our free 2024 Australian Doctor Job Market.
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Typical pay rates for locum general physicians and internal medicine doctors are:

Resident medical officers (RMO): AUD$80 – AUD$200 per hour Registrars: AUD$100 – AUD$250 per hour.

Consultant general medicine physicians: AUD$2,000 – AUD$3,500 per day

Private vs. public sector:

Physicians in Australia often grapple with the decision to work in the private sector or the public sector. Both have their merits:

Public sector: Working in public hospitals often offers more job security, set working hours, and a structured pathway for career progression. Salaries in the public sector are usually determined by standardised pay scales, which consider factors like years of service and additional qualifications.

Private sector: While the private sector may come with more uncertainties, it often provides physicians with the potential to earn more, especially if they have a strong patient base and reputation. This is often complemented by the flexibility to choose working hours and conditions.

How physicians can increase their salary:

How much you get paid as a general medicine specialist depends on a number of different factors. How many hours you work, where you work, your training background, and seniority all have an impact on how much money you can earn.

Here’s how you could earn more:

General medicine is a diverse and challenging specialty. The broad nature of this speciality means there are many areas of medicine for you to explore. Doing further training in a subspecialty can help boost your job (and earning) opportunities.

Private hospital positions tend to pay more than public hospitals, however, lots of physicians find public hospital work more rewarding. Mixing public and private work could be the key to increasing your income and still getting lots of satisfaction out of your work.

Gain experience in different locations. General medicine specialists with broad knowledge and experience are in higher demand and can expect higher pay.

If you’re in a salaried role, take on locum work to boost your income. You’ll also gain more experience (and contacts), helping you to further your career opportunities.

Work in a rural hospital. This is where you’re most needed. Rural healthcare facilities aim to lure top internal medicine specialists from urban areas with higher locum rates and salaries.

Working with a medical recruitment agency like Medrecruit is the easiest way to find out where you’ll earn the most. You’ll also gain access to more job opportunities, so you can choose a role that doesn’t just pay better, but offers you a better lifestyle too.

Looking to gain experience and further your career as a physician? Work with us to find the right physician role for you. We’re a preferred supplier to hospitals and clinics across Australia and have jobs for physicians at all career stages.

Want to learn about the highest rates and hottest locations for doctors in Australia right now? Download our brand new and free 2024 Job Market Report.

Bethany Rogers
04 October 2023Article by Bethany RogersMedrecruit Editor