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Urologist

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Summary of occupation

​Urologists specialise in the surgical and medical treatment of disorders and diseases of the kidney, urinary bladder and urethra, and male reproductive organs.

They surgically treat conditions such as kidney, bladder and prostate cancer, kidney stones, congenital disorders or traumatic injury to the urinary tract. They can also perform kidney transplants, vasectomies, and surgically treat incontinence.

There are currently just under 40 urologists in Western Australia, most of whom work in the Perth Metropolitan area.

ANZSCO description: Provides medical and surgical treatment to patients with disorders of the kidney, urinary bladder and urethra, and treats disorders of the male sex organs. Registration or licensing is required.
Alternative names:
Specialisations:
Job prospects: Average
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Knowledge, skills and attributes

A urologist needs:

  • good hand-eye coordination and manual dexterity
  • to be able to work under pressure
  • excellent communication skills to liaise with other physicians and provide clear information to patients
  • attention to detail
  • discretion and respect for patient confidentiality
  • to be able to work as part of a team.
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Working conditions

​Urologists work for public and private hospitals as surgical specialists and consultants. They may also supervise and teach medical students. They may be required to work long shifts, odd hours and weekends. They may be required to be on-call in case of an emergency.

Urologists may have to operate for long periods at a time. They operate in completely sterile theatre rooms and must wear protective clothing.

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Salary details

​On average, urologists, classified under surgeons, can expect to earn between $3,574 and $5,281 per week ($185,895 and $274,654 per year), depending on the organisation they work for, and their level of experience.

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Tools and technologies

​Urologists use a range of specialised surgical instruments when operating on patients including biopsy forceps, hooks, scissors and scalpels. They use specialised endoscopes such as nephroscopes to view the kidneys, ureteroscopes to view the upper urinary tract, and cystoscopes to view the bladder and urinary passage. They may also use equipment designed for keyhole laser surgery. They must wear sterile surgical attire while operating.

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Education and training/entrance requirements

To become a urologist, you must first become a qualified medical doctor and then specialise in urology.

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. Learn more about your study options.

To then specialise in urology, you must register with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) and undergo a training program at accredited hospitals, 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 a minimum of two years (internship and residency).

To work as a urologist in Western Australia, you will need to obtain registration from the Medical Board of Australia.
 

Related courses

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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.

Related apprenticeships

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Recognition of prior learning

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.

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