Frequently asked questions

Here are some answers to the most common questions we're asked about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders working in the health sector.

Page last updated: 28 March 2017 (this page is generated automatically and reflects updates to other content within the website)

There are many different types of health jobs: from dental assistants to dieticians, from physiotherapists to paramedics, from nurses to neurosurgeons.

Some health jobs involve working in hospitals and clinics, while others involve working in private practices or out in the community. Some jobs suit people who like working behind the scenes, while others suit people who love face to face contact with the public. Most importantly, jobs in health are attainable for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Visit our jobs section to learn about the variety of jobs available.

The amount and type of training that you need varies from job to job.

In some health roles you can learn on the job, such as a personal care worker. Some you can do through an apprenticeship, while for others, such as an audiometrist you can study at TAFE or a Registered Training Organisation (RTO).

Universities also offer courses in the health sector from physiotherapist to medical practitioner.

For more information see training information.

No, not all health jobs require you to study at university. There are many roles that allow you to do on-the-job training, an apprenticeship or study at TAFE or a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) to enter the health workforce. For more information see training information.

Where you train for a job in health depends on the role you’re interested in and where you live. There is a need for health jobs all across Australia. However, training for some jobs is only offered at certain training institutions or universities. There is financial support and other support available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students if you need to move away from home to train or study. For more information see training information.

Many jobs in health allow you to combine your love of sport with helping others.Hear the stories of some people working in these fields:

Yes, some jobs in health give you the opportunity to travel. These can include travelling to nearby communities to see patients as a dental assistant, travelling interstate with a sports team as a physiotherapist, or travelling overseas to work in your chosen health job.

There are many jobs which involve hands-on training. If you are doing an apprenticeship, for example, the majority of your training is on-the-job. This means that your employer teaches you the skills you need by demonstrating and getting you to complete hands-on tasks. Many health jobs that require further study at TAFE, a RTO or university will include some subjects that have a hands-on focus and allow students to do work experience, such as internships.

Health salaries vary greatly between jobs. It can reflect how much training or study you've done and how long you have worked in the job. However, all health jobs are rewarding, offer good job security and give you the opportunity to help people and give back to your community.

There are many different types of financial support available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students training for a job in health. Costs normally associated with training including course fees, text books and other materials. If you move away from home there is also the cost of accommodation and food to think about. Financial support available for students includes: Youth allowance ABSTUDY TAFE government-subsidised courses Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP), and Scholarships. See financial support for more information.

There are many health jobs you can train for through TAFE or other Registered Training Organisations (RTO). Upon completion of your course you'll be awarded a Certificate III or Certificate IV qualification that enables you to work in your chosen role.

Contact your local TAFE to find out what courses they offer.

There are many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders already working in the health sector. See the videos of real Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders already working in a variety of health jobs on the homepage. Jobs in health are within the reach of all Australians. There are a variety of different pathways into health and a wide choice of skilled and semi-skilled job options. There is a job in health for almost everyone.

If you're interested in one or more of the following, a job in health may be for you:

  • helping your community
  • learning interesting things
  • working with lots of different people
  • having a job you can be proud of
  • having variety in your job
  • trying new challenges.
There are lots of different training or study options to suit anyone who is interested in working in health. You can explore roles in health on the jobs page.

If you're interested in a particular job in health, choosing to study certain subjects in Year 11 and 12 will allow you to apply for training courses for that job. Talk to your school career adviser for help in choosing what school subjects best suit the kind of course you want to get into when you finish Year 12.