How to become an Orthopaedic Surgeon


The following were selected for the SET Programme in 2019:

Jessica Mowbray
Ruth Tan
Lloyd Roffe
Neil Stewart
Bryden Nicholas
Joshua Knudsen
Richard Storey
Vahe Sahakian
Lincoln Nicholls
Dulia Daly
Robert English
Marla Ross
Lewis Aguis
Mustafa Saffi
Kenan Burrows

NZOA SET applications have CLOSED

To become an orthopaedic surgeon an applicant must have a basic medical degree and at least two years post graduate experience. The training takes a minimum of five years where the trainee is employed as a registrar and rotated through a range of accredited New Zealand hospitals. The curriculum is a mixture of practical operating competencies, communication skills and formal theoretical examinations. Progress is reviewed annually by the NZOA Education Committee.  On successful completion the applicant will receive a Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) and be able to become vocationally registered as an orthopaedic surgeon with the New Zealand Medical Council. The training is completed jointly through the College (RACS) and the NZOA Education Committee, contact is through Prue Elwood.

Important notice for applicants to SET Selection from 2016 onwards

The NZOA Education Committee has recently agreed that all who apply for SET Selection from 2016 must have passed the Generic Surgical Science Exam (GSSE) prior to applying.   

Details about the exam can be found on the RACS website 

2019 Intake Surgical Education Training (SET) Application Process

Applications are now closed for the 2019 training year.

All applicants must have pre-registered with RACS, even if they have previously applied. Applicants must be a NZ citizen or have NZ Residency and be registered with the NZ Medical Council.  In 2018 ten trainees were selected to begin training in December 2018.  

Selection Timetable for 2018

AEDT - Australian Daylight Saving Time 

AEST Australian Eastern Standard Time

  • Selection registration to RACS opens Thursday 4 January 2018 - 12.00pm AEDT
  • Selection registration to RACS closes Friday 2 February 2018 - 5.00pm AEDT
  • NZOA Selection applications open Wednesday 28 February 2018 - 12.00pm AEDT
  • NZOA Selection applications close Wednesday 28 March 2018 - 12.00pm AEDT
  • Referee reporting opens Thursday 26 April 2018 AEST
  • Referee reporting closes Wednesday 23 May 2018 - 5.00pm AEST
  • Interviews Friday 29 June 2018 
  • Announcement of offers Monday 2 July 2018

2018 applications

It is important that you read the Selection  Regulations Surgical Education and Training Program Orthopaedic Surgery 2019 Intake BEFORE applying as these detail the Selection Process.    

Please note you can apply using the electronic form or by hard copy - electronic is strongly preferred.  

Open from 28 February 2018 to 28 March 2018

  • This form will allow you to enter all your application details and can be saved as you go. 
  • Access is login and password controlled. Simply click on this link and you will be emailed a password.  
  • This form will allow you to browse and upload all your supporting documentation - you can add and delete attachments as required. 
  • It is recommended that you save as you move through the form.
  • Once you have completed a page check the box at the bottom of the page - you will be prompted for any missing information.
  • Once you have completed the form you can submit the form and it is recommended that you print each page for your records.
  • Please be aware that once you submit the form, you will no longer have any access to the form.
  • No extensions will be granted, we recommend completing and submitting before the due date.
  • Your application will be acknowledged by NZOA and you will be invoiced for your application fee of $800.
  • If you have any problems, concerns or questions please contact Prue Elwood at or 04 913 9898
Following links have further information