Choosing The Country

As well as your own preference as to which country you’d like to work in, there are some general guidelines, which make it easier to go to some countries rather than others. These are based on your own nationality and where you undertook your medical training,

Clients in Europe will give preference to candidates who are from other EU countries. Nationals from outside the EU may be considered if they already hold registration in that country or another EU country or if they undertook their medical training within the EU (Please note that the UK is an exception to this – the GMC uses the nationality of a candidate to determine which registration route applies).

Clients in Australia, New Zealand and Canada will give preference to candidates who trained in the UK, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand & Singapore

Clients in China will give preference to candidates who trained in the USA, Canada, UK, Australia, Germany, France or the Benelux countries

Other things to think about when choosing the country

Why is the country recruiting doctors from overseas?

Primarily it’s usually because there’s a shortage of well-qualified local candidates. The reasons for this vary from country to country but here are our thoughts on why there are jobs in these areas:

  1. Australia: overall population growth due to economic development is the main reason that there are more jobs in medicine
  2. New Zealand: relatively strong economic growth and some brain drain from New Zealand to the UK, Canada and Australia
  3. Canada: the existing GP community is growing older and retiring, making vacancies available for new doctors
  4. China: economic growth around Shanghai and the need to provide western medicine services for the large expat community
  5. Sweden: Our vacancies are in the north with few local doctors available. Plus, a significant number of those that are there are due to retire in the next few years
  6. UK: A combination of real growth in the health service to bring the NHS up to the standards of other health services in Europe and too few medical school places.
  7. Germany: economic growth

Which countries offer the best earning potential?

Probably the best incomes (or best potential incomes) are in Australia for UK / Irish GPs

After that comes Canada

Then China, Sweden, Germany, New Zealand, UK all have similar levels salary / earning potential

Other things to think about when choosing the country

What about tax?

Australia has a relatively low tax rates compared with the UK. Canada next. EU countries have relatively high tax rates but excellent public services.

Most countries have “double-tax” treaties between themselves so that you don’t get charged tax by your home country as well as the country you’re working in. We can give more guidance on this

Multicultural and ethnic mix:

Few places are as diverse and culturally mixed as the main UK cities. So, if the mix of people is important to you, then you should look first to the bigger cities in the countries you’re thinking of going to. They will almost always have a more diverse population than the smaller towns. We are used to being asked this question and we can advise further if needed

Distance from friends and relatives

Most clients understand the distance issue. However, it is worthwhile thinking about the visiting “home” or having relatives come to visit you at an early stage. Extra time off for travel to another country can usually be negotiated as part of the contract, so that you don’t feel under pressure to get all your travelling done in a short time


Most of the countries where we have vacancies have much more extreme weather than here (the UK). On the other hand, looking out of my window today in mid-June in the UK ( it’s a “summer monsoon”), the thought of somewhere hot and sunny is very appealing