How to raise a concern about a health practitioner

We can look into safety concerns raised about registered health practitioners, students and unregistered people claiming to be health practitioners.

Some types of healthcare complaints are handled by different organisations.

Use this page to find the right place for your concern.

Things to consider before raising a concern

Step 1 Talk to the practitioner or health service

This is often the quickest and easiest way to have your concern resolved.

Step 3 Raise a concern with Ahpra

If you have a concern about unsafe practice or behaviour, we want you to tell us about it.

There is more than one way to raise a concern:

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Need help?

Call Ahpra on 1300 419 495
or submit an online enquiry

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Support services

Find the support you need –
these agencies may be able to help you

Talking to the practitioner or health service

Patient talking to their practitioner

If you have questions about your healthcare, it is ok to ask questions and seek explanations. You can do this while you are receiving care, or after you’ve stopped. Sometimes talking to the practitioner or health service to understand what happened can resolve your concerns.

A practitioner is the person who treated you such as a doctor, nurse or dentist. A health service is the hospital or clinic where you had your appointment.

If you don’t get the answers you are seeking or things go wrong then you can make a complaint directly to the practitioner or health service.

This is often the quickest and easiest way to have your concern resolved.

However, we know that there are situations when you can't talk to the practitioner or health service, or don't feel comfortable. For example, if your concern is about unprofessional behaviour (see examples below) you may wish to speak to us first. If your concern is a crime such as sexual assault, it should also be reported to the police.

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What state or territory does the practitioner or student work in?

Australian Capital Territory, Northern Territory, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria or Western Australia 

For concerns about registered practitioners or students in these states, you can report your concern to Ahpra. 

New South Wales or Queensland

There are different arrangements for students and health practitioners practising in Queensland and New South Wales. To find out more about healthcare complaints in these states, contact:

Map of Australia with NSW and Qld highlighted

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What is your complaint about?

Concerns Ahpra can consider

practitioner examining child patient

Unsafe care 

For example: 

  • mistakes carrying out procedures or diagnosis
  • mismanaging a patient’s personal information
  • errors about medication
  • infection control issues
  • unsafe surgical care or aftercare
  • culturally unsafe practice.

Unprofessional behaviour 

For example: 

  • a sexual relationship with a patient or relative of a patient  
  • inappropriate examinations of a patient  
  • acts of violence, sexual assault or indecency
  • racism
  • sexist behaviour  
  • acts of fraud or dishonesty.

Practitioner health

We can consider concerns about a practitioner’s health impairment that may present a risk to patient safety. We do not need to know about all health issues, only those that are not managed.

Concerns about students

We can consider concerns about students relating to criminal convictions and health matters.

It’s OK to complain

Raising concerns is important because it can help improve the quality of healthcare in Australia. If you have a concern about safety, we want you to tell us about it.

Submit a concern online

Or you can call us on 1300 419 495.

Criminal offences

We also investigate criminal offences under the National Law in all states and territories, and prosecute where appropriate. These offences include:

These include:

  • unlawful use of a protected title
  • false claims to be registered;
  • claiming to be a health practitioner without being registered
  • unlawful advertising

Reporting a criminal offence

Complaints we can’t consider

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Complaints about professions not regulated by Ahpra

For example:

  • dietitian
  • massage therapist  
  • personal care worker 
  • social worker. 

Ahpra regulates 16 professions, which are listed below.

Complaints about a health service or organisation 

For example:

  • clinic 
  • community health centre  
  • hospital 
  • mental health service. 

Ahpra regulates individual practitioners, not organisations.  

Other complaints about a registered practitioner

For example:

  • fees and charges
  • health record access or correction
  • dissatisfaction with the level of service you received.

Contact your local 
health complaints organisation

Complaints about a government-funded aged care provider 

Ahpra can consider concerns about individual registered practitioners working in aged care. It can’t consider concerns about other types of health workers or about aged care organisations.

Contact the
Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission

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What type of health practitioner is your concern about?

Ahpra regulates practitioners and students in 16 professions:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners
  • Chinese medicine practitioners
  • Chiropractors
  • Dental practitioners (including dentists)
  • Medical practitioners (doctors)
  • Medical radiation practitioners
  • Midwives
  • Nurses
  • Occupational therapists
  • Optometrists
  • Osteopaths
  • Paramedics
  • Pharmacists
  • Physiotherapists
  • Podiatrists and podiatric surgeons
  • Psychologists

If your complaint is about a different type of healthcare worker, you may be able to raise it with a health complaints organisation in your state or territory.

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How to raise a concern with Ahpra

There is more than one way to raise a concern with us. The quickest and easiest way for most people to raise a concern with us is via our online form. Choose the way that you feel most comfortable with. If you are unsure about raising your concerns, you can contact us and ask general questions about Ahpra or the process.

Submit a form online

To raise a concern about a registered practitioner.

Submit a concern

Call us

You can speak to one of our staff if you would like assistance.

Call 1300 419 495

Report an unregistered practitioner

Offences are breaches of the National Law.

Report a criminal offence

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Resources supporting the public

Ahpra and the National Boards have published information for the public to help make safer healthcare choices.
What we’re doing

Mandatory notification

By law, registered health practitioners, employers and education providers must make a mandatory notification in some circumstances.

Social media icons on mobile device


What should patients know about advertising?

What makes advertising about health services, including on social media and in testimonials, lawful or unlawful?

Ahpra registration checklist

Our service charter – what you can expect from us

The Ahpra service charter (Service charter), launched in April 2022, sets the standard of service you can expect when interacting with us. It’s our commitment to you.

Booklet titled Insurance Policy

Complaints and feedback about us

How to make a complaint about Ahpra or a National Board.

Contact us

Contact information for online enquiries, telephone enquiries, media enquiries and ways you can send us documents.