Doctor - Anaesthetist

In 2011, Paul Mills was working as a doctor training in anaesthetics on the Sunshine Coast. Paul is originally from Thursday Island and studied at university with the assistance of financial scholarships.

Page last updated: 16 December 2013

Video transcript

"When I was at high school, I thought I was going to play sport but my family and friends encouraged me to look at my options at university. I didn’t fully understand what becoming a doctor was, but I knew it was in helping people and dealing with people’s health problems.
My name is Paul Mills, I’m a doctor training in anaesthetics on the Sunshine Coast.
My job is to put people asleep so that they can have their operation. I look after them during the operation, and then I wake them up and look after them immediately after.
I went to university and studied for six years and after doing two years as a junior doctor, I decided to specialise. When I was at uni, I had a lot of support from family and friends, but I also had financial support from scholarships. It helped with not only accommodation but with textbooks, laptops and resources needed to continue studying.
Studying medicine was a lot of hard work but at university you make a lot of new friends and it becomes your second home. There are a lot of people in the same boat, who have similar stories and you’re able to connect with them.

I think the hardest decision you’ll ever have is deciding what you want to do. Working in health is very rewarding, you can travel with it and you get to meet new people and help all types of Australians, and you can make a difference.
Personally, I think every child has the right to be whatever they want to be. If you want to do it, if you want to become a doctor, the fact that I went through it and that I did it and I came from an Island in the Torres Strait – I think anyone can do it."

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