Katherine Hospital

Katherine Hospital is a 60-bed regional hospital in a remote region, larger than the states of Victoria and Tasmania combined.

The town of Katherine enjoys a tropical climate and is close to the spectacular Nitmiluk (Katherine Gorge) and Kakadu National Parks.  The hospital services a resident population of around 19,000 and also sees a tourist presence in the region of 500,000 visitor nights per annum. 

Our population is arguably one of Australia's most disadvantaged, with amongst the poorest health and greatest per capita mortality statistics in the country.  

Along with the challenges of remoteness and complex pathologies, over 70% of admitted patients are Aboriginal people, with many different cultures and languages and whose history traces back 50,000 years or more.

Background

Our hospital's clinical style has been shaped by its multicultural and pioneering history, and this is reflected in its comfortable, relaxed atmosphere and non-hierarchical structure. 

The hospital itself has survived both Japanese bombs in 1942 and floodwaters in 1998. 

 Clyde Fenton, our first doctor in 1934, was known for his irreverence and daring, but also for his resourcefulness and commitment, utilizing cutting edge technology (in the form of a De Havilland Moth biplane) to provide quality clinical care - a tradition we feel continues in examples such as our innovative approach to the use of telehealth and our passion to develop and maintain a standard of outstanding clinical excellence. 

Come to Katherine

Along with our great rural lifestyle, the fascinating medical challenges and interesting trauma presentations we regularly treat makes work at Katherine Hospital both stimulating and satisfying, and will ignite your passion for remote and Indigenous health.  

Our mixed specialist/generalist medical workforce model provides well-supported training opportunities and a friendly collegial style.  

The hospital has a busy emergency department with 15,000 presentations per annum.  Our obstetrician-supported maternity unit has around 300 deliveries per annum and our general physician team manages around 1,000 medical admissions per annum.  Visiting surgical and other specialty services provide effective and integrated links to services across the Top End health network. 

Rural medical Practitioner and rural generalist positions

RACGP or ACRRM Fellows interested in rural ED work or in utilizing their skills in other areas of the hospital are encouraged to consider Katherine Hospital. 

 Recognised advanced skills qualifications in areas such as anaesthetics, obstetrics, ED, surgery, mental health or paediatrics are particularly welcome and attract additional allowances. 

 We believe our hospital provides an excellent environment for utilizing and developing these skills, and we consider the training and development of exceptional rural generalists a key hospital function.  

Primary health care positions in NT Government Health Centres in the Katherine region (Pine Creek, Borroloola and Robinson River) are also available and may be combined with hospital work, and we are always very happy to discuss GP and RG options and opportunities.

Training positions

Accredited training positions are available for the following medical colleges: 

CollegeTraining
Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM)
  • Primary Rural and Remote Training
  • Advanced Skills Training in Adult Internal Medicine, Anaesthetics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP)

  • General Practice Terms
  • Extended Skills Posts in Adult Internal Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Advanced Skills Training in Adult Internal Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP)
  • Basic Physician Training - secondment site
  • Core A Advanced Training in General and Acute Care Medicine
Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (RANZCOG)
  • DRANZCOG (basic)
Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators (RACMA)
  • FRACMA

Depending on availability, trainee positions may include Medical Officer or Registrar positions in ED, General Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Paediatrics or Anaesthetics.  

All trainees require the capacity to be able to work in in a rural emergency department and with occasions of off-site supervision.

With excellent local general practice and Aboriginal primary health care services, it is possible for RACGP and ACRRM trainees to undertake all of their training within the Katherine region. 

 From time to time, trainees taking a 24-month contract with Katherine Hospital may be supported to undertake 12 months of procedural skills training in either anaesthetics (JCCA) or obstetrics and gynaecology (Adv. DRANZCOG) at the Royal Darwin Hospital, followed by 12 months of consolidatory service at Katherine Hospital.  Some positions are highly sought after and we suggest that you make enquiries as early as possible.  

RMO rotations

We have four identified RMO positions filled by junior doctors on rotation from either the Royal Darwin or Austin Hospital.  These 12-week terms include accommodation and relocation, and rural incentives mean RMOs are remunerated at a slightly higher rate than their usual metropolitan salary.  

Rural terms usually mean an opportunity to assume increased responsibility in a supported environment.   There are two ward-based positions and two ED-based.  Given the ebb and flow of rural hospital work, RMOs will find they work across disciplines to provide support to their colleagues. 

Medical

The Medical RMO position is our identified Austin Hospital rotation and is supported by a traditional Registrar and Staff Specialist hierarchy.  

General

The General (often called "Surgical") RMO position is co-located in the adult ward and works closely with the local medical team as well as visiting and off-site surgical services and on occasions with local mental health services. 

This position has the broadest clinical exposure and hands-on procedural opportunities of our junior positions. 

Emergency

The two ED RMO positions require junior doctors in at least their third postgraduate years and with previous ED experience.  

For many, the experience of ED night duty, when they become the primary doctor in the hospital, is a new and challenging experience that often becomes the highlight of the rotation. 

Locums

From time to time Katherine Hospital employs locum medical officers to cover staff leave.

 Applicants must be PGY4+ and have emergency experience and an interest in rural and remote health.  On occasion we also employ specialist locums - FACEM, FRANZCOG, FRACP, Adv. DRANZCOG and JCCA. 

If you're considering a locum in the NT, please contact us directly.  We're happy to include you in mail-outs about upcoming opportunities and will normally give preference to locums not employed through agencies.

Remuneration

Remuneration is based upon the Medical Officers Northern Territory Public Sector 2014-2017 Enterprise Agreement and renewable contracts of six to twenty four months can be offered to appropriate applicants.  

Assistance with relocation expenses and subsidized accommodation is available.  We understand the challenges of remote living and endeavor to flexibly adapt rostering and leave to meet medical staff training and recreational needs.

How to apply

Vacancies are advertised on the Northern Territory Government careers website

Enquiries about upcoming positions should include a curriculum vitae including at least two contemporary referees and a cover letter outlining the background to your interest in working in Katherine.

Contact

Email MedicalAdminKH@nt.gov.au or call the Director of Medical Services on (08) 8973 9211.

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Last updated: 20 December 2016