16 Feb 2015
From 1 July 2015, arrangements that allowed some practitioners to become registered as their professions joined the National Scheme1 will expire.
Practitioners in the following professions who have not yet applied for registration will be affected:
- Chinese Medicine (including acupuncturists, Chinese herbal medicine practitioners and Chinese herbal dispensers)
- Occupational Therapy
- Medical Radiation (including radiographers, radiation therapists and nuclear medicine technologists)
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice
After 1 July 2015, the only way to become registered will be by meeting the National Boards’ post-grandparenting registration standards.
The professions listed above joined the National Scheme and became regulated on 1 July 2012; practitioners who were previously practicing in these professions are able to register with the National Board through a Grandparenting Standard2.
The intent of the grandparenting provisions was to ensure that practitioners who were legitimately practising before 1 July 2012 (particularly in those jurisdictions that did not require registration) were not unjustly disadvantaged because they have not completed an approved qualification - applicants with older Australian qualifications, overseas qualifications, or practice experience were able to obtain registration via this pathway.
The National Law
Under section 52 of the National Law3, an individual is eligible to apply for general registration if they have successfully completed a qualification recognised under the National Law as an approved program of study, or if they hold an overseas qualification which is considered by the Board as equivalent to an approved program of study.
Only practitioners who are registered with the relevant National Board can practise using the protected titles or make claims to be qualified to practise a regulated health profession. Penalties exist if you pretend to be registered (or lead someone to believe that you are) when you are not. You can check whether you are registered on the AHPRA website using the Check your health practitioner is registered form.
More information on the Grandparenting standards for each profession is available in the Registration Standards section of the relevant Board website:
1National Registration and Accreditation Scheme
2Section 303 of the National Law sets out the ‘grandparenting’ provisions for individuals to be eligible to apply for registration to the profession but who do not hold an academic qualification gained by completing an approved program of study.
3Health Practitioner Regulation National Law as in force in each state and territory