Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency - Appealing a decision
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Appealing a decision

Only a health practitioner who has been the subject of a decision can appeal that decision.

There are, however, limitations on the type of decisions that can be appealed.

No other person can appeal a decision, including the person who raised the concern, a patient, employer or any other person.

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What decisions can be appealed?

A health practitioner can only appeal one of the following decisions (known as an appellable decision) made as a result of the notifications process.

It's possible to appeal a decision by a National Board to:

  • impose or change a condition on a practitioner's registration
  • refuse to change or remove a condition imposed on the practitioner's registration
  • refuse to change or revoke an undertaking given by the practitioner to the National Board, or
  • suspend the practitioner's registration.

It's possible to appeal a decision by a panel to:

  • impose a condition on the person's registration 
  • suspend the person’s registration (health panel only), or
  • reprimand the person (performance and professional standards panel only).

Where do I lodge an appeal?

The appeal body is the 'appropriate responsible tribunal' and each state has its own tribunal.

Parties to the appeal

When a practitioner or student appeals against a decision of the National Board or panel to the responsible tribunal, the practitioner or student is called the appellant and the National Board is called the respondent.

Tribunal proceedings and decisions

Tribunal proceedings are generally open to the public and decisions are published on the tribunal's website and elsewhere. Ahpra can also choose to publish a tribunal's decision

In some instances, the practitioner's or a patient's identity may remain confidential.

After hearing a matter, the responsible tribunal may:

  • confirm the appellable decision (that is, state that the initial decision of the National Board or panel was correct) 
  • amend the appellable decision, or
  • substitute another decision for the appellable decision. In doing this, the tribunal has the same powers as the National Board or panel which made the original decision.

Costs of the appeal

The responsible tribunal may make any order about costs it considers appropriate. This includes ordering:

  • the practitioner to pay the National Board's costs
  • the practitioner to pay the National Board's as well as their own costs, or
  • the National Board to pay the practitioner's costs as well as its own costs
Page reviewed 28/11/2023