Overview of results 2016/17
The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), working in partnership with the 14 National Boards, recorded a deficit of $6.001 million for the financial year 2016/17, which is in accordance with expectations.
Equity held by AHPRA on behalf of the 14 National Boards as at 30 June 2017 was $80.755 million, a decrease of $6.001 million from 30 June 2016. The last received contributed capital was in 2012/13 and related to the 2012 addition of four professions to the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (the National Scheme). The contributed capital component of equity was $43.895 million, and is attributed to the National Boards.
It is expected that the National Boards will have reasonable and sufficient equity to cover their commitments. To reduce equity levels, some National Boards have deliberately utilised these funds to cover operational expenditure, including funding the replacement of core business infrastructure during 2016/17, and we expect this to continue during 2017/18.
Total income from transactions was $173.236 million during the 2016/17 financial year; an increase of $2.307 million from 2015/16. The growth was due to an increase in the number of registrants throughout the year and indexed fee increases for four of the National Boards, with the remaining National Boards reducing or maintaining their registration fees during the year.
Total expenses from transactions were $179.237 million; an increase of $10.160 million from the 2015/16 financial year. This was driven by accreditation costs, notification volumes and changes to our core business infrastructure.
AHPRA’s net assets decreased by $6.001 million during the year to $80.755 million. Cash and cash equivalents combined with investments remained similar to the previous year ($174.136 million to 30 June 2017, compared with $174.421 million at 30 June 2016). The most significant change was that investments classified as non-current decreased from $119 million to $60 million, reflecting the change in maturity timeframes for a number of the investments due to the cash flow requirements of the business.
Overall, the balance sheet is healthy and the largest contributor to this is both cash and cash equivalents, and investments held by AHPRA.
The year ahead
AHPRA planned strategic initiatives will continue during 2017/18 and will require the partial use of accumulated surpluses from previous years. Overall, after several years of increased equity, we expect equity to decrease from its current level of $80.755 million again in 2017/18.
It is expected that AHPRA, in partnership with the National Boards, will continue to be solvent throughout 2017/18, including the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia (ATSIHPBA). The five-year financial strategy, which commenced from 2017, is important to ensure the long-term financial sustainability to fund the work of the National Scheme.