Anaesthetist Pay

How much do anaesthetists make in Australia in 2022?

Like most lines of work, there is a lot of variability. It depends on the type of work you do, how much of it you do, and where you do it. Let’s break it down by the type of work:


A full-time public anaesthetist will typically earn about $300,000 to $450,000 per year, including on-call. The hourly pay for regular in-hours work is around $150-$200 per hour. After-hours on-call work is often remunerated on a fee-for-service model, though some health services use an elevated hourly rate (e.g. 2x base hourly rate), in addition to an on-call retainer. This after-hours work is highly variable but can add another $150-200,000 annually for a full-time FTE public appointment.

Public anaesthetists are also entitled to sick leave, annual leave, conference leave, long service leave, public holidays, and superannuation.

While specifics vary by state/territory, there are typically additional CME (Continuing Medical Education) allowances that can be used for courses, conferences, and other work-related expenses; and also paid non-clinical time to work on research, teaching, audits, committees, etc.


Pay will vary widely based on billing practices – particularly the type of lists you do and your unit value. At the low end, some will earn similar to public anaesthetists. Most will be closer to $600,000 to $800,000 per year, with some exceeding $1m. Importantly, this does not (usually) include any leave (e.g. sick leave, annual leave, long service leave) and generally requires payment (e.g. ~4% of billings) for billing services.

Rates for one session (half-day) are usually between $2,500 and $5,000, equating to an hourly rate of approximately $500-1,000 per hour. Read more in our page about Anaesthesia Private Practice & RVG Units.


Locum pay rates vary depending on the location, required work (particularly whether after-hours on-call is included) and urgency. The lowest is $2,000 per day and some will pay up to $3,500 to $4,000 per day. These rates may be negotiable, particularly if filling in at the last minute or for rates at the lower end of the usual range.

See also

Don’t agree with our figures or want to know more? Feel free to let us know in the comments below:

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