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We need you now at Julia Creek

We need you now at Julia Creek

2022-07-12 14:31:03

We need you now at Julia Creek

North West Hospital and Health Service (NWHHS) in partnership with McKinlay Shire Council is recruiting a Senior Medical Officer/General Practitioner (SMO/GP), to be based at Julia Creek in Queensland.

As our SMO/GP you will be at the heart of the Julia Creek community. See what we have on offer at Julia Creek in the map below.

NWHHS Interactive Map

Role of the SMO/GP

Experience the variety offered by rural and remote healthcare, seeing patients in acute and community settings.

Feel supported by our professional team in this role, while challenging yourself personally and professionally – and be rewarded with an outstanding remuneration package, rent-free accommodation, five weeks annual leave, additional professional development leave and generous allowances.


Job description
  • Your primary role will be as the sole doctor providing clinical care for the community. As such you will be seeing patients in three clinical settings: firstly in a primary care clinic; secondly in the Emergency Department; and thirdly as in-patients on the ward.
  • The Senior Medical Officer reports to the Executive Director of Medical Services and Clinical Services, and is responsible, to provide clinical care to patients and clinically manage, on a day-to-day basis, the associated multidisciplinary patient care team to ensure the provision of appropriate patient care, delivered to the highest professional and ethical standards.
  • To be part of a team that actively contributes to patient safety by following policies, procedures and protocols of the North West Hospital and Health Service
  • To support continued improvement of health services by always participating in quality improvement opportunities.
  • To excel in patient safety by active contribution to a framework of sound clinical governance.
  • Promote a safety-supportive culture and consistently apply evidence-based practice.
  • Always consider the rights of the patients and other health care consumers.
  • Provide clinical services to patients at all times subject to scope of clinical practice granted and according to Queensland Health policy, the Clinical Services Capability Framework and standards and protocols outlined in the Primary Clinical Care Manual.
  • Participate in the “on call” roster for the care of remote facility patients. Supports would be in place to ensure adequate leave and breaks from the roster using nurses and telehealth from externally based medical officers.
  • Liaise with Nursing staff to ensure that the procedure manual is maintained.
  • Play a key role in the hospital’s response to internal and external disasters and be fully aware of the Disaster Plan (a copy of which is kept in the department).
  • Assist the Queensland Ambulance Service away from the hospital when requested.
  • Provide evidence-based and quality clinical care of individual patients in all domains of medical practice.
  • Manage the administrative requirements of patient care including ensuring discharge summaries and medico-legal correspondence are completed with minimal delay.
  • Ensure quality professional communication with individual patients, relatives, guardians and all relevant health professionals necessary for quality clinical care outcomes, including for the transfer of responsibility of clinical care.
  • Make a commitment to patient safety and to improve clinical care through participation in clinical audits, clinical meetings, peer review and other safety and quality assurance programs, presentations and projects.
  • Make a commitment to maintain clinical standards through participation in college or Queensland Health prescribed continuing professional development programs.
  • Contribute to the provision of population health services to the local community or communities served, including active participation in community health programs.
  • Ensure continuum of care and case management of Chronic Disease clients through patient care plans and ensure all clients are registered on the relevant corporate information systems.
  • Complete the medical administrative requirements to support access to Medicare for primary health care service delivery. This includes working to achieve and/or maintain Vocational Registration.
  • Promote a safety-supportive culture and consistently apply evidence-based practice.
  • Actively participate in a working environment supporting quality human resource management practices including employment equity, anti-discrimination, workplace health and safety and ethical behaviour.
  • Follow defined service quality standards, occupational health and safety policies and procedures relating to the work being undertaken in order to ensure high quality, safe services and workplaces.
  • Implement and monitor the organisation’s quality standards, occupational health and safety policies, procedures and programs and provide clinical governance in the relevant work area.
  • Effectively engage with people and communities from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and cultural and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
  • Deliver culturally responsive and safe care in line with the Queensland Health Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Capability Framework 2010-2033 and Queensland Health Workforce Diversity and Inclusion Strategy 2017-2022. 
About Julia Creek

Care for the people of McKinlay Shire — a farming and mining community of around 800 people with 500 people in Julia Creek.

Julia Creek MPHS, a major employer in the area with 15 full-time positions, is a modern six-bed, Level 1 facility under the Rural and Remote Clinical Services Capability Framework, comprising four aged care beds and two acute beds.

The facility coordinates visiting specialist services including dental, mental health, optometry, allied health, women’s health, child health and diabetes education.

Our passionate team of healthcare professionals is focused on primary care, health promotion and managing chronic disease.

Julia Creek MPHS is part of the North West Hospital and Health Service, with its main hospital in Mt Isa, just two and half hours away.

The Julia Creek MPHS and the McKinlay Shire Council jointly fund the position of a community nurse to the SMO/GP and their role includes covering the SMO/GP’s leave and being on-call when required.

Partner and families

Working and living at Julia Creek means more time for you. No more commute! Spend more time doing what you love and with the people you love.

If your partner wants to work in Julia Creek, talk to us and we will do everything we can to help them find employment.

Julia Creek is a family friendly community with a highly rated primary school, childcare centre, and a long list of extracurricular activities including sports clubs, swimming pool and water park, and a pony club for the kids to learn to ride.

And, if you need a slice of city life, jump in the car. Mount Isa is just two and a half hours drive for shopping and restaurants. For something a little bigger, Townsville is just a two and a half hour flight.

You might live remotely but it is easy to stay connected to friends and family.

We invite you to get dust up your nose and dirt on your toes. Enjoy your new expansive backyard filled with unique animals, plants, people and experiences.

Remuneration package

Set yourself up for the future with an unbeatable remuneration package.

This could be your golden opportunity to work hard and save money while planning your future.

Base salary $392,198 to $513,620 per annum.

Please refer to Annexures A-E in the Position Description Document for more detail.

Working at Julia Creek

Thrive in this key leadership role as part of a welcoming proud community filled with extraordinary people. Read testimonials from our former doctors below and discover more about our Multi-Purpose Health Service.

Reflection from Dr Martin Doris, MB, BCH, BAO, DRCOG, FRACGP

I had the pleasure to live and work in Julia Creek from 1999 to 2004 as the General Practitioner and Medical Superintendent with right of private practice. I had emigrated to Australia along with my family in 1998 and, after a year of working in Townsville, I applied for the job in Julia Creek as the local doctor (part of the Doctors for the Bush program). My wife and son moved to Julia Creek with me while my daughter boarded at high school in Townsville.

We look back now with incredibly fond memories of this little outback town in Western Queensland that we called home for five years. Moving from cold, green and wet Ireland to the dry, hot expanse of McKinlay Shire was definitely a shock to the system. Thankfully the people of Julia Creek and McKinlay welcomed us with open arms – we became part of the community. My wife, Catherine, applied for the job of librarian with the McKinlay Shire Council, which she thoroughly enjoyed, and my son, Michael, enrolled in the primary school.

We met extremely friendly members of the community, both in the town and also on the surrounding cattle properties. We have beautiful memories of the Town and Country Club, the Christmas Tree nights in Julia Creek and Nelia, and the incredible outback sunrises, sunsets and night skies.

We were invited to family meals, backyard barbecues, christenings, weddings, birthdays, picnics in the outback, horse races and, sadly, funerals. We witnessed firsthand the close community ties so vital for small rural towns, especially when awful tragedies affected the whole community. The support and help provided to those in need was inspirational. We were privileged to see a part of rural Australia that few Australians have seen, including the seasonal transformation of the land from dry arid desert to beautiful lush grass and flowers.

My time spent at the rural Julia Creek Hospital was a fantastic medical experience. I improved my medical knowledge and skills and was supported by the very dedicated nursing, administration and ancillary staff – individuals I will always be indebted to for their kindness, guidance and support. Our family’s highlights included the opening of the new GP surgery in the town centre and our Australian Citizenship ceremony on the banks of the Julia Creek with the planting of four native gum trees.

The annual Julia Creek Dirt n Dust Festival was a great spectacle. We witnessed thousands of people descend on the town for three days and the streets coming to life thanks to the dedicated committee and volunteers.

In 2004 we left Julia Creek to move to Townsville. It was a difficult and sad decision for us but we have been blessed with the many good friends we made over the five years. Even though I now work in Townsville, I am privileged and pleased to continue to treat patients from Julia Creek and surrounding properties.

Julia Creek, the cattle properties, the shire and its people will forever have a special place in our hearts and my family are eternally grateful for the incredible life experience we had over the five years while living and working with its community.

Reflection from Holly Kenny, partner of Dr Tim Kenny, FRACGP, MBBS, MRCGP, FACRRM, DCH

Looking back at the decision that was to change our lives – Tim, my GP husband, and I deciding to move to Julia Creek – we didn’t think twice about it: the community needed a doctor and if ever there was an adventure, this was going to be it. We jumped in.

We thought we might be able to contribute something … how wrong we were – it was the other way round! Nothing prepared us for the bush hospitality and generosity on every level that we would receive from this precious community. We were accepted with open arms and never looked back. Our time stretched from one to two years, from three to four: we only left after five years when my mum became ill.

Our days and years at Julia Creek were filled with professional challenges, kindness words cannot express, total support, enthusiasm, ideas, crazy experiences, laughter and friendships that would prove to be lifelong.

While Tim worked in the hospital, I got involved with the community. It was busy! Many initiatives simmered in the pot – the Dirt n Dust Festival for a start. Suddenly we were writing media releases, building distribution lists and discussing how to market products and ideas from a distance. Next we were on a property looking at the pros and cons of biltong versus jerky, then a family needed help with mustering … and so on! Meanwhile Tim was handling some of the greatest challenges and opportunities of his professional career.

We were also busy celebrating: friendships, milestones, rain, life in general. I remember being struck by the heart and soul of this tiny township. No idea was too ‘out there’. If it had any merit at all, someone found a way to make it work.

Julia Creek is an empowering place. It’s also a numbers game: if you don’t join in, there may not be enough people to go ahead with something – so you’re pushed, inspired and taken out of your comfort zone time and time again. Even Tim stepped out – much against his better judgement – as part of the netball team!

We were given a send-off we’ll never forget. Tim and I were changed forever: you can take the doc out of Julia Creek, but you can’t take Julia Creek out of the doc.

A postscript: Holly became passionate about supporting medical partners and families in the bush, a reason some doctors leave remote postings. She volunteered with the Queensland Rural Medical Family Network during her time in Julia Creek, representing Queensland at the national level in Perth. She also received a surprise call linked to her previous employment: incredibly, a role was created that allowed her to continue her work in professional tennis from Julia Creek. It just shows that anything is possible.

Talk to us

If you are ready to embrace a diverse and rewarding work environment that’s as special and dynamic as North West Queensland, call us to find out more about living and working in Julia Creek.

Call (07) 4744 4882