The big question when choosing your future career after finishing your medical school and intern year, is what do you want to do? Do you want to specialise in becoming a general practitioner, surgeon, physician, emergency doctor, pathologist and so on. The list in endless. Each one requires further training, exams and more. Enter the world of the Australian Surgical Assistant.
A surgical assistant works for surgeons and proceduralists and helps them during operations and procedures. Remember holding retractors at medical school? Its exactly the same, except you are required to do a little more. Help ensure that the day runs smoothly, write some forms, and typically just generally be a nice, helpful person! Do this and your guaranteed to find the best work, and make good money.
A surgeon once said, that a good surgical assistant can save him 5-10 minutes a case. They can help with the turnover in the theatre, or anticipate the next steps in an operation. If a surgeon has 8 cases in a day, that can be the difference of finishing at 6pm or 8pm!
A lot of surgical assistants are surgical trainees that work with surgeons all the time, and therefore find out about lists first. You could join a surgical assistant service in your state, but typically fees range from 15-30 percent of your take home money. Generally, as an assistant, you would not charge a fee above what is being paid to you by the private health fund, but in some areas, you do. This requires your own discussion with the patient and an informed financial consent to be signed. Most surgical assistants, just accept the payment directly to their bank account from the health fund.
A good surgical assistant working 5 days a week, and not charging patients an out of pocket expense can make a significant income – often than they think (edited). With minimal liability, responsibility and the ease to take holidays when you want – it can be the answer to a truly flexible lifestyle, which is both rewarding professionally and financially.
A surgical assistant in Australia will make 20% of what a surgeon makes. But a surgical assistant can work every day of the week in the operating theatres, rather than a surgeon who may only operate 1 or 2 days per week and need to consult in the other times and do ward rounds (No consulting and ward rounds for assistants). We don’t want to spoil the fun and tell you how much you can make. You should find out for yourselves, but it is definitely related to how hard you want to work! There are assisting cases happening through the night, on weekends, and at any time.
Being an assistant is a skilled specialty. The best surgical assistants are in high demand, as they can make a huge difference in the operating theatre for the patient. OpAlert prioritises assistants with excellent conduct and skills, so surgeons get the best experience they can.
OpAlert helps you find work, and generate a good income. Our find work segment can help you fill those days that you feel like working, but can’t find any work. If you want notifications as soon as lists are available, make sure you are accredited in as many hospitals around your state that you can be, have adequate insurance (usually about $200 per year) and have turned on all the notification times in the iPhone or Android app. Just download the app and see how easy it truly is!
To download for Apple iOS, click here.
To download for Android, click here.
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