Paramedic Salary & Employment – Queensland

Re-published 26th February, 2024.

Are you looking to kickstart a career in the field of paramedicine but are not sure where to start?

If you’re at the beginning of your journey, let us help you learn all about paramedic employment opportunities as well as the earning potential for this career pathway. This blog largely focusses on Queensland, so if you’re local to this area you will find the information particularly useful. 

Paramedic Careers in Queensland

The Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) is one of the world’s largest ambulance services. That means many paramedic opportunities in the vast state of Queensland exist to service more than 5 million people in an area covering almost 1.8 million square kilometres.

Paramedic Queensland estimates 2,780 paramedics are currently employed by the QAS stationed in over 260 response centres state-wide. These simple facts indicate the growing need of paramedic QLD services and the importance of recruiting more paramedics in the coming years.

QAS Jobs

Currently, the QAS offers two categories of employment for qualified paramedics: Permanent Full-time and Casual employment. Advanced Care Paramedics and Intensive Care Paramedics are the most common positions held within the QAS and does acknowledge that there may be slight variations depending on specific situations and locations.

Paramedics who are successful in gaining employment with the QAS on a permanent full-time basis, work a normal roster and are eligible to receive all the leave entitlements allotted to them as per the Award. Remembering that a typical shift will be 12 hours, rostered over a variety of day and night shifts.

A normal roster for full-time paramedics is a rotating shift system that total 38 hours a week. In fact, the rosters are 40 hours a week, with the additional 2 hours assessed as accrued time and can be saved up and taken as holidays. Any scheduled time off as a result of the accrued time must be taken in accordance with QAS Scheduled Absence Policy and Procedure.

Additional information for QAS Employees

It is well worth noting that in addition to the base salary/wage rate, Queensland paramedics are eligible to receive additional penalty rates and allowances. These can be accrued for working weekends or public holidays, in addition to penalties for afternoon and night shifts.

Queensland Public Sector employees are required to use the QSuper superannuation scheme. This is standard for all Paramedic QLD employees with the QAS.

In some cases, those who have previously been employed with an interstate ambulance service prior to your appointment as a QAS paramedic you may be eligible for Recognition of Prior Service (RPS). Provided there is no break in service of more than 3 months. In this case, interstate ambulance services employees can maintain their leave benefits. This applies to for Long Service and Sick Leave purposes only.

Private Sector Jobs

There are a range of career options for paramedics in Australia’s private sector, including opportunities in the mining and resources industries, event medical services and even civil engineering. As demand grows for skilled paramedics in these fields, healthcare professionals can seek an abundance of fulfilling roles in the private sector. Some of these roles include;

  • Registered Paramedic/ Ambulance Paramedic
  • Bicycle Response Paramedic
  • Rescue Paramedic
  • Flight/ Air Ambulance Paramedic
  • Wilderness Response Paramedic

You can learn more about different career pathways for private sector medics and paramedics here.

How much do Paramedics earn in Australia?

Like many professions, the earning potential for a paramedic in Australia can differ depending on which industry or area of specialty an individual chooses to work in or is qualified for. For example, paramedic jobs are likely to pay more in the mining, resources and energy industry with an average salary of $112,408 annually.*

For someone looking to work in the healthcare and medical sector, there is still a very reasonable income to be made where you can expect to earn on average $100,874 per year.*

There are many different types of paramedic roles you can explore, depending on your interests or skillset. You can learn more about some of the popular and diverse positions in Australia here

Paramedic Salary: Australia

Paramedic salaries may vary across each state and can also depend on an individual’s specific level of experience.

If you are wondering what you could possibly earn as a qualified paramedic, in Australia the average salary for a paramedic is between $105,000 to $125,000 per year.*

Paramedic Salary: Queensland

Queensland paramedic salaries are some of the best in the country when compared to other state ambulance services. It is also on par with private health service companies for paramedic positions state-wide.

The salary of a Queensland-based paramedic can range, however the earning potential is up to $125,000 per year.* 

It’s important to note, your salary as a paramedic is subject to change depending on a myriad of factors, such as type of paramedic and additional qualifications, if you’re working in the public or private sector, your location in Queensland as well as years of experience.

*Source: Seek (2024)

Paramedic Employment Pre-requisites

To be eligible to work as an Ambulance Paramedic with QAS, any state service or in the private sector too, you will need a Bachelor of Paramedic Science degree.

This qualification means you can work as a registered paramedical practitioner anywhere in Australia, ensuring registration is conducted via the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and any other state-based requirements have been met. You can learn more about these here.

Typically, the Bachelor takes around 3 years to complete and there are many universities in Australia offering the Bachelor in Paramedic Science. You can find more information on which universities offer the paramedic degree and even offer Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) here.

VET Entry/ Diploma Pathway

If the thought of going to university full-time or even part-time is not possible, then there are other alternatives to achieving your paramedic dream. One of the most popular pathways is to complete the HLT51020 – Diploma of Emergency Health Care before attending university to complete the degree. The benefits to this are, you can keep in working in your current job while enjoying flexible online study, gain practical experience in the industry and even explore job opportunities once Diploma qualified so you can work as a medic before applying to university.

Depending on which university you choose, you may be granted credits off your degree because you have completed the diploma. Every university is different therefore it is important to make your own enquiries first so you’re well prepared before applying anywhere. You can learn more about university pathways here and find some helpful information about RPL and Credit Transfers here.

Apply today

If your interest in the Diploma pathway has been sparked now that you have a bit more information under your belt, why not find out how Australian Paramedical College (APC) can help you?

APC is passionate about delivering quality education and hands-on training for students Australia-wide, with its headquarters being based in Queensland too! If you’re looking to explore a reward career and study paramedicine, we encourage you to apply today and one of our friendly Course Advisors will get in touch to answer all of your questions and should you choose to enroll, help you get started.

What is your career journey?

To discover how you can become a fully qualified Ambulance Paramedic or Basic/Advanced Life Support Medic, complete a personalised paramedical career development plan.