I’m still here. It’s a fiasco. Instead of smugly blogging from summertime Auckland, I’m feeling slightly bitter in bitter-cold London. All warm clothes are packed. I’d hoped the NZ Medical Council registration would have arrived, but alas, I’m still waiting. In my quest to career around this week, I’ve learned two lessons.
To work in New Zealand, you need to have evidence of immunity to:
An MRSA nasal swab
And here’s the rub, a Heaf test or chest X ray. Has anyone out there ever had a Heaf test? At all the places I’ve worked, occupational health have had a look at my BCG scar, seemed impressed and sent me to work. For most jobs, you need to have these tests done within three weeks of your start date. Don’t get them done too soon. You’ll just need to be re-bled when the paperwork comes through. Having an abundance of Heaf tests isn’t exactly the jolliest January activity.
Know your limits
Check baggage limitations and be realistic about what you can carry. If you are working abroad for more than six months, you are probably going to need to ship some of your belongings. Apologies if this sounds patronising, but until last week, I was planning to carry my triathlon racing bike under one arm and check it in as excess baggage. It really is worth shopping around between different shipping companies as quotes vary vastly. Unlike planes, you pay by volume, not weight. Unfortunately the required shipping red tape, customs forms and insurance papers comes in volumes too. I suggest making a list of everything as you pack it. This makes both insurance calculations and customs procedures easier than un-sticking and re-packing.