I am a physiotherapist and my name is Tom Cross
I left the UK in January to come to New Zealand. The registration, and recruitment process took me about 6 months.
Kristin from Accent HR found me a job and that was the easiest part of the process. The challenging part of the process was completing the paperwork for NZ Physio board registration.
When I first arrived in NZ I found that the people were very friendly, we had great weather, and there is such beautiful scenery.
The best parts of NZ are the great access to the outdoors (great variety too, beach, mountains and volcanoes!), great beaches and surf with quiet roads to get around on!
What I miss the most is: Family and friends
My biggest piece of advice is to give plenty of consideration to the costs involved.
Be clear about the costs involved and budget accordingly, ensure you include the cost of getting a car, the registration process and housing. My second bit of advice is that it will likely take between 3-6 months to feel fully settled and establish a good friends group and to also establish yourself within your job.
Finally, do your research when negotiating salary. In NZ the Physio sector is mainly private so they are used to negotiating figures so don't be shy to ask for a fair salary and don't undersell yourself. Be sure to get a 'retainer' if working privately as this will guarantee some income during less busy times as client numbers will fluctuate.
Anything else you would like to say:
I would like to thank Kristin and the team at Accent. Kristin was my main recruiter, she was easy to speak to and worked extremely hard on my behalf especially whilst I was away traveling through India on my way to NZ. She was very reassuring as I had a very tight timeframe that I had asked her work within.
The main difference is in the healthcare system within Physiotherapy. Here in NZ Physio's see much more acute clients and thus your approach to patient management will need to be altered accordingly. There is also an expectation from clients that they will receive 'hands on' treatment. If you have worked in a private system previously then this will not come as a shock but if you are only used to the NHS then you might find you need to adapt to ensure client satisfaction and repeat business.
Despite the acute nature and client expectations the approach to physiotherapy is very much the same.
I have enjoyed the more acute nature of my client’s injuries. This has made for some interesting cases and also developed my manual therapy skills. In addition, here in NZ physios are able to refer for XRAY and directly to orthopaedic consultants without the need to involve the GP which has developed my triage skills.