Oliver - Consultant Ophthalmologist living in NZ
My name is Dr Oliver Comyn and I am a Consultant Ophthalmologist and I am working in New Zealand with my wife Kate who is a GP. (Family doctor)
I came to NZ from the UK. The whole process in regards to timing took me five months from the first Skype interview.
The easiest part of the process was having the immigration medicals and most challenging part of the process was getting together the necessary paperwork to prove equivalence of training to the medical council.
My first impressions of NZ were bright sunshine, enormous skies, open roads and beautiful countryside
The best parts of NZ are the time and space that people have, the emphasis on having a balance in your life between work and leisure, great coffee and food. I do miss a pint of ale in a country pub, in a village with old buildings
My advice if you are planning to come to NZ is absolutely go for it!
NZ is a country where the quality of life is high but the cost of living can also be high. Expect to pay more for food and bills than in the UK, but less for commuting. Travel costs for going further afield are also going to be a big part of your new life. Nowhere is close to this collection of amazing islands on the bottom of the world.
I have moved here to a role in a private eye clinic so see a mixture of insured and self-funding patients, plus have a number of public patients to see through our contract with the local district health board. Having to deal with the financial and business side of the practice has presented different challenges to those of the NHS. The patients speak English and are generally quite easy going and trusting of doctors. They are reliable and on time for their appointments (this isn’t necessarily a similarity with the UK but it does make life easier!)
The role of ACC (Accident Compensation Corporation) in dealing with accidents, including treatment injuries, encourages an open and honest culture about mistakes that occasionally happen in healthcare. It is good not to have to practise an overly defensive form of medicine through fear of litigation and complaints.
To view a video case study of my experiences click here :