Summary of occupation
Gynaecologists diagnose and treat disorders of the female reproductive system. They manage problems including gynaecological malignancies, sexually transmitted diseases, infertility, sexual dysfunction and menopause.
Gynaecology is strongly linked with obstetrics - health of mother and fetus before, during and after pregnancy.
The number of gynaecologists practising in Western Australia is relatively small and most are located within the metropolitan area.
Gynaecologists are referred patients from general practitioners. Their work may occur in a number of different settings including outpatient clinics, inpatient wards and operating theatres.
Gynaecologists tend to have their own practice leading to fairly predictable work hours.
On average, gynaecologists can expect to earn between $3,065 and $7,285 per week ($159,376 and $378,832 per year), depending on the organisation that they work for and their level of experience.
The main tools gynaecologists use in diagnosis are clinical history and examination. Gynaecological examination uses instrumentation such as the speculum. Ultrasound can be used to confirm abnormalities.
To work as a gynaecologist in Western Australia, you will need to obtain registration from the Medical Board of Australia.
To become a gynaecologist, you must first become a qualified medical practitioner and then specialise in gynaecology.
To become a medical practitioner, you need to study a degree in medicine. Alternatively, you can study a degree in any discipline followed by a postgraduate degree in medicine.
Some universities in Western Australia offer relevant courses. Contact the universities you are interested in for more information.
To specialise in gynaecology, doctors must apply to the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists to complete the Specialist Obstetrician and Gynaecology Training Program and ultimately receive fellowship.
To be eligible for this specialist training, on completion of your medical degree, you must work in the public hospital system for two years (internship and residency).
Apprenticeships and traineeships
As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer. You spend most of your time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider of your choice. They will assess your skills and when you are competent in all areas, you will be awarded a nationally recognised qualification.
If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. You generally start your school based apprenticeship by attending school three days a week, spending one day at a registered training organisation and one day at work. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you get a full-time apprenticeship you can apply to leave school before reaching the school leaving age.
If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.
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If you think you already have some of the skills or competencies, obtained either through non-formal or informal learning, you may be able to gain credit through recognition of prior learning.