Antarctic Medical Practitioner (AMP)

Placing a sample in the centrifuge machine
Antarctic medical practitioners undertake research into photobiology & psychology (Photo: E Merfield)
The doctor is helping to shift boxes form a pallet outside a hut.Preparing a stretcher for a practice search and rescuePerson in surgical mask, gloves and gown holding surgical instruments.One person holds a penguin with a tag on its wing while the other helps to set it down on the groundMawson expeditioners at medical operation training

Are you a doctor looking for a challenge?

Supported by full-time doctors at the AAD’s head office in Kingston, Antarctic medical practitioners (AMPs) provide surgical, medical and dental care to our isolated Antarctic communities.

The medical practitioner at each of our four stations is the only doctor for about 12 months, providing health care services for a group of expeditioners that can fluctuate from approximately 12 in winter to around 75 in the summer season (October – March).

Every expeditioner must pass stringent pre-departure medical checks so health is generally not a significant problem. However, medical, surgical and dental emergencies do still occur and the doctor is responsible for dealing with these. The AAD’s Polar Medicine Unit also conducts a research program aimed at increasing our knowledge of how humans interact with the Antarctic environment.

The experience of living and working in this remote region is very different from that of most suburban or rural practices and most doctors look back on their time in this beautiful, harsh and icy environment as stimulating and rewarding.

What will you actually do on the job?

  • Provide complete medical, surgical, and dental care, including public health, occupational medicine, nutrition, preparation of first-aids kits, upkeep and stocktaking of equipment and pharmaceuticals. Medical support includes primary, secondary and occasionally tertiary level care with 24/7 telemedicine support.
  • Provide supplementary instruction and supervision to fellow expeditioners on matters of health, medical procedures and first-aid.
  • Conduct research on human interaction with the Antarctic environment.
  • Participate in community support training courses, such as fire fighting, boating, hydroponics, and attend field training.
  • Prepare monthly and annual reports.

As well as these specific job roles you will also be required to perform station duties rostered by the station leader to support community life, such as general kitchen duties, garbage clearance, water duties, and assisting other expedition members with official programs. You may volunteer for other duties such as firefighting, hydroponics and boating.

Interested in working in Antarctica?

Jobs in Antarctica are advertised during a recruitment period towards the end of each year, with the exception of the Antarctic medical practitioner which is open year-round. Some other positions are not available every year. For more information, see Jobs in Antarctica.