29 Jul 2013
National Boards have announced practitioner registration fees for 2013/14, including four Boards that have reduced their fees, two which have frozen their fees and eight which have limited their fee increases to the national consumer price index. The new fees apply from 1 August 2013.
The National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (National Scheme) is funded by practitioners’ registration fees and there is no cross subsidisation between professions.
AHPRA CEO, Martin Fletcher, said the reduced, frozen or CPI-rise only fees set by the National Boards reflected the commitment by National Boards and AHPRA to prudent financial management.
’Every National Board has set a fee that enables it to meet its regulatory responsibilities under the National Scheme while striving to be the effective and efficient regulator everyone has a right to expect,’ Mr Fletcher said.
’Three years experience of implementing the National Scheme has provided much more complete information about the actual costs of regulating each profession under the National Law,’ he said.
’However, we have seen an increase in notifications (complaints) over the past year. The number and complexity of these cases is never going to be entirely predictable. Managing notifications is a major cost for National Boards and they will continue to keep fee levels under close review to ensure careful financial management.’
The Physiotherapy, Optometry, Occupational Therapy and Medical Radiation Practice Boards have reduced their fees.
The Nursing and Midwifery and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Practice Boards have frozen their fees.
The Chinese Medicine, Chiropractic, Dental, Medical, Osteopathy, Pharmacy, Podiatry and Psychology Boards have limited their fee increases to the national CPI of 2.5% in 2013.
The Health Profession Agreements between AHPRA and each Board will be published later in the year. These agreements set out the services AHPRA will provide in supporting the Boards to regulate their professions. More detailed information about each Board’s financial operations is also published in the Annual Report which will be released in November 2013.
In most cases, the annual fees will apply from 1 August 2013. At this time, the fees schedule for each profession will be published on the respective National Board’s website, including the fee arrangements for practitioners whose principal place of practice is NSW. Variation in the fees payable by NSW practitioners will be announced by the Health Professional Councils Authority in NSW and detailed in the fee schedule.
The fees set by each National Board vary to reflect the actual cost of regulating each profession under the National Law, as follows.
NSW is a co-regulatory jurisdiction within the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (National Scheme) – so the Health Professional Councils in New South Wales and the Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC) work in tandem to assess and manage concerns about health practitioners’ conduct, health and performance.
In all other states and territories, this work is done by the National Boards supported by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).
A policy directive from the Ministerial Council (November 2009) sets out arrangements for fee setting between NSW and the rest of the National Scheme. Item 3 in the directive states that NSW registrants will not be required to contribute to the costs of running the national complaints scheme and equally non-NSW registrants will not be required to contribute to the cost of running the NSW complaints scheme. Discussions about fees between AHPRA on behalf of the National Boards and their counterparts in NSW (the Health Professional Councils Authority on behalf of individual health professional councils) have taken place, as they must, in the context of this policy directive.
The way we have calculated the NSW share of National Scheme costs for registration and accreditation has been independently scrutinised.
Quarterly data about the number of practitioners in the National Scheme in each state and territory is published on each National Board website.
In NSW, health practitioners pay an annual registration renewal fee set by their National Boards. The Council for each profession in NSW is responsible for setting the notifications/ complaints element of the registration fee payable by NSW practitioners. The fee NSW practitioners pay is the combined sum of National Scheme costs (for registration and accreditation) and the fee set by the NSW Health Professional Councils for the notification/ complaints component. The NSW government contributes in NSW through funding for the Health Care Complaints Commission. In 2013, the National Scheme component of the national fee increased by less than the CPI of 2.5%. The costs of the notifications/complaint component for osteopathy and podiatry have increased, so the fee payable by NSW practitioners is above the national fee.
Further information on the NSW complaints component of the registration fee is available on the Osteopathy Council of NSW website and the Podiatry Council of NSW website.
Download a PDF of this Media release - 29 July 2013 (124 KB,PDF)