Regulation of paramedics under the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme

What’s new?

  • The Health Practitioner Regulation National Law and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 (the Amendment Bill) was passed on 6 September 2017 by the Queensland Parliament and gained assent on 13 September 2017. The amendments will apply in all States and Territories except Western Australia (South Australia also needs to make a regulation to give effect to the amendments). You can read the Amendment Bill and the Explanatory Notes on the Office of the Queensland Parliamentary Counsel website.
  • The Legislative Assembly of the Parliament of Western Australia has passed a corresponding amendment Bill (the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law (WA) Amendment Bill 2017) which will now be considered by the Legislative Council.
  • The first Paramedicine e-news went out in late September, featuring information about our new Project Manager, an update on the Amendment Bill and a call out for the Executive Officer position.
  • AHPRA has developed Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) to help answer some of the common questions on the proposed regulation of paramedics.
  • The recruitment process for appointment of members to the inaugural National Board is on track. Our aim remains for The Ministerial Council to be able to make appointments in late September 2017.

About the National Scheme

The National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (National Scheme) was established in 2010 to ensure the safety of consumers of health services provided by registered health practitioners. More than 650,000 practitioners from 14 registered health professions are currently regulated nationally.  

Under the National Scheme, National Boards and AHPRA work together to ensure that practitioners are appropriately qualified and competent to practise a registered health profession. National Boards exercise functions in accordance with the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law, as in force in each state and territory (the National Law). 

Regulating paramedics  

Australian Health Ministers agreed on 6 November 2015 to progress the inclusion of paramedics under the National Scheme.  

On 24 March 2017, Ministers met as the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council (the Ministerial Council) to consider a draft of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law Amendment Bill 2017 (the Amendment Bill) that will amend the National Law to regulate paramedics under the National Scheme. 

The Amendment Bill was introduced into Queensland Parliament on 13 June 2017. A public hearing with stakeholders on the Amendment Bill was held by the Health, Communities, Disability Services and Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Committee of the Queensland Parliament on 17 July 2017. The Queensland Committee’s report was tabled on 11 August 2017. The Committee made one recommendation only - that the Amendment Bill be passed. The link to the report can be found on the Queensland Parliament website.

The Amendment Bill was passed on 6 September 2017 by the Queensland Parliament and gained assent on 13 September 2017. The amendments will apply in all States and Territories except Western Australia (South Australia also needs to make a regulation to give effect to the amendments). The Legislative Assembly of the Parliament of Western Australia has passed a corresponding amendment Bill (the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law (WA) Amendment Bill 2017) which will now be considered by the Legislative Council.

What will change?

  • paramedics will be able to be registered nationally for the first time in Australia
  • the title ‘paramedic’ will be protected nationally, and 
  • paramedicine will be a registered health profession.  

At this stage, national regulation of paramedics is expected to start in the second half of 2018. The date that national regulation will start for this profession is referred to as the “participation day” and is to be prescribed in a regulation.

Implementation phase

AHPRA has been tasked with implementing the decision of Ministers. 

Our first priority is to work with governments to support Ministers establish the inaugural Paramedicine Board of Australia. Once the National Board is appointed by the Ministerial Council, our dedicated team will work with the National Board to help ensure that paramedics are ready for national regulation. 

Implementation steps and duration

CEO

Recruit and appoint First appointments to inaugural National Board advertised (April 2017) Health Ministers make appointments (anticipated in late September 2017)

Be engaged

National Board will develop and consult on registration standards, codes, guidelines - from October 2017

Open an AHPRA account - you will be able to create an account for your contact details and when registration is open you can lodge your application for registration online - First quarter 2018

Approval and decisions

National Board will submit recommended registration standards to Ministers for approval

Accreditation arrangements will be decided by the National Board

List of approved programs will be decided by the National Board

Registration open

Log in to your AHPRA account and apply for registration and provide all requested documents - mid 2018

Assess and decide

AHPRA will assess your application

National Board will decide if you meet the requirements for registration

Paramedics will be advised of registration outcome

Paramedics regulated under NRAS

(Go live late 2018)

FAQ

More information:

Contact

If you have a query, please contact Deb Tapping, project manager by email at Paramedicine.

 
 
Page reviewed 5/10/2017