Changes to Australian working visas

Posted 11/1/2024 by Alasdair Spinner



Exciting times in Australian working visa reform! The Australian Government has announced it is changing the working visa structures. Reforms just announced include a new pathway called the ‘Specialist Skills Pathway’. This is what all senior medical practitioners will fall under when it starts, replacing the current 482 visa (which replaced the 457 visa back in 2018). The government says this visa will have a 7 day processing time and is specifically for highly skilled workers on a high salary.



Currently, we tell our clients the visa application and processing stage can take up to 2 months. 7 days would bring down lengthy hiring timelines by as much as 20%. When you consider it can take 12 months to get to Australia after you've accepted a job offer, this is a big deal for both the specialist and the hiring health service.



Following the Kruk Report  we've seen recent reform in the medical registration process with the welcome ditching of the in-person AHPRA ID check. I am hopeful other improvements will be made to the medical registration step in the journey to Australia. Of course, the elephants in the room are the medical colleges. Their processes, criteria and outcomes are subjective to each college and each has different interests and goals. Uniformity and agreement between these institutions will naturally be difficult. A subjective approach to improving processes and assessment outcome implications within each college, may be the right answer. But getting them to change is the biggest struggle. 



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