What they do

Osteopaths diagnose patients' complaints using case history, physical examination, observation, use of touch, and reading of diagnostic images, such as x-rays. They treat patients with manual techniques such as stretching, muscle relaxation and mobilisation. They may treat a wide range of medical complaints. They may also advise on exercise and nutritional programs.

Working conditions

An osteopath's normal workday would be 9 to 5, Monday to Friday. However, in some cases evening or weekend work may also be required. Most osteopaths are in private practice or work with other health professionals in a clinic. Osteopaths work in air conditioned offices.

Tools and technologies

Osteopaths need to be able to read x-rays and other diagnostic test results. They may also need to be able to use ultrasound equipment.

How do I become one?

Education and training

To become an osteopath, you usually need to study a degree in science with a major in osteopathy, followed by a postgraduate degree in osteopathy.

There are currently no courses in nuclear medicine available in Western Australia. You can study degree courses at a number of universities interstate.

The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology offers a five-year double degree Bachelor of Health Science/Bachelor of Applied Science (Osteopathy). Southern Cross University offers the five-year combined Bachelor of Clinical Science (Osteopathic Studies) and Master of Osteopathic Medicine. Victoria University offers the 4.5-year combined Bachelor of Science (Osteopathy) and Master of Health Science (Osteopathy).

Contact the universities you are interested in for more information.

Required registration and licensing

To work as an osteopath in Western Australia, you will need to obtain registration from the Osteopathy Board of Australia.