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    Guide for Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA)

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      Each registered healthcare practitioner should be in alignment with the standards and policies set by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).

      Now, what exactly is AHPRA and what does it do?

      About AHPRA

      You must have heard two terms – national boards and AHPRA. To clarify any doubts you have, AHPRA is an Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency that regulates all healthcare practitioners in Australia and assists the national boards to execute the national scheme.

      AHPRA works to provide policies and set standards for the National Board. AHPRA works to protect the public by setting regulations for healthcare practitioners. They also set agreements with boards in regards to fees, budget, and services.

      AHPRA also monitors and audits registered healthcare practitioners for their alignment with the National Board Requirements.

      To be exact, AHPRA works with 15 national boards and is currently handling 740,000+ healthcare practitioners in Australia.

      AHPRA implements the common standards of quality for healthcare practitioners following the National Registration and Accreditation in Australia.

      Supporting National Boards of AHPRA

      As I have informed that AHPRA works with 15 national boards, they are:

      1. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia

      2. Chinese Medicine Board of Australia

      3. Chiropractic Board of Australia


      4. Dental Board of Australia


      5. Medical Board of Australia


      6. Medical Radiation Practice Board of Australia


      7. Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia


      8. Occupational Therapy Board of Australia


      9. Optometry Board of Australia


      10. Osteopathy Board of Australia


      11. Paramedicine Board of Australia


      12. Pharmacy Board of Australia


      13. Physiotherapy Board of Australia


      14. Podiatry Board of Australia


      15. Psychology Board of Australia

      Overview of 15 National Boards (With Their Functions & Powers)

      While most of the details for each national board can be found on the Official AHPRA Website. Let me give you an overview of all the boards.

      The first board, i.e. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia and Second Board, Chinese Medicine Board of Australia are appointed for three years to maintain common standards of quality for healthcare practitioners. Both the boards are appointed by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council in Australia.

      Secondary work that both boards do is handling any types of complaints, notifications & hearings.
      To contact the boards, you can always fill an inquiry form.

      The third board, i.e. The Chiropractic Board of Australia is only for Chiropractors. It is set up in each state and territory. Just like the above two boards, this board members are also appointed by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council in Australia.

      The fourth board, i.e. Dental Boards of Australia is for Dental Practitioners.

      The fifth board, i.e. Medical Board of Australia handles multiple kinds of stuff, such as:
      1) They can make individual registration & complaint decisions.

      2) They are supported by boards in each state and territory.


      3) They handle decisions for the registration committee, health committee, immediate action committee, and notifications committee.

      The sixth board, i.e. The Medical Radiation Practice Board of Australia works in each state and territory to make appointments to the National Board.

      The seventh board, i.e. The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia handles nursing and midwifery practitioners.

      Eight, Ninth & Tenth Board, i.e. The Occupational Therapy Board of Australia, Optometry Board of Australia & Osteopathy Board of Australia are very similar to the Chinese Board of Australia which are appointed by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council in Australia for three years. The only different thing is the Optometry Board is for Optometry professions and the Osteopathy Board is for Osteopath Professions.

      The eleventh board, i.e. The Paramedicine Board of Australia is appointed by COAG Health Council for three years. It is a very important board and its Paramedics title is protected nationally. It is for registering paramedics and students.

      The twelfth board, i.e. Pharmacy Boards of Australia is for registering pharmacists and students. They handle common standards of quality for practitioners and handle their complaints, notifications, and hearings.

      The thirteenth board, i.e. The Physiotherapy Board of Australia is for registering physiotherapists and students. They have set up the National Registration and Notification Committee (RNC) to support the national board.
      The fourteenth board, i.e. The Podiatry Board of Australia has some powers to make decisions under RNC. They are appointed by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council in each state and territory of Australia.

      Fifteen board, i.e. The Psychology Board of Australia is appointed by the Ministerial Council. It is for registering psychologists and provisional psychologists that also handle common standards of quality for these practitioners and handle their complaints, notifications, and hearings.

      While each board has its good own place, let me tell you more on:

      1. Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health Board of Australia

      The role of the Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health Board of Australia is to maintain accreditation standards under the regulation of the national law.

      They are responsible to maintain the health practice, guidelines, and standards where each member of the board is appointed by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council in Australia for three years.

      They are accountable for handling any kind of disciplinary hearings, complaints, or notifications.

      To contact the board, you can fill an online inquiry form or visit their official website.

      2. The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia

      The role of the Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health Board of Australia is to maintain accreditation standards for registering nursing and midwifery practitioners and students.

      They are responsible to maintain the codes, guidelines, and standards for the nursing and midwifery profession while they also have access to overseas trained practitioners who want to work in Australia.

      They are accountable for handling any kind of disciplinary hearings, complaints, or notifications while they also possess powers under the National Scheme to make decisions about nurses, midwives, and students registration, endorsement, rotation, and setting conditions & audits for them.

      To contact the board, you can fill an online inquiry form or visit their official website.

      3. Pharmacy Board of Australia

      The role of the Pharmacy Board of Australia is to maintain accreditation standards and good standards for the course of study.

      They are responsible to maintain the codes, guidelines, and standards for the pharmacy profession while they also have access to overseas trained practitioners who want to work in Australia.

      They are accountable for handling any kind of disciplinary hearings, complaints, or notifications.

      To contact the board, you can fill an online inquiry form or visit their official website.

      Registration Process of AHPRA

      Let’s know how to register for AHPRA now:

      Knowing The Basic Requirements of National Boards

      Each national board has different online application forms and requirements. For example,

      • If you want to practice and become ‘Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioner’, then you apply only if you’re a last year student and left with six more months of study from an approved Australian program of study, or you’ve graduated from the same within the last two years.

      • If you want to practice through the psychology board of Australia, then you can apply provisionally by completing a continuous four-year of study within the last 10 years, or you can apply if you’re in a Master’s Program with accreditated standards. (only if you have not been a health practitioner in Australia before), or if you’re holding registration with the New Zealand Psychologists Board and want to apply in Australia under the provisions of the Trans Tasman Mutual Recognition Act.

      Just like this, each national board has different criteria and basic requirements which you need to fulfill before applying for the AHPRA registration process.

      Read carefully about the board requirements from the table below –

       

      National Boards

      National BoardsRead carefully about the board requirements from the table below –

      Basic Requirements of National Boards
      Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health

      Practice Board of Australia
      https://www.atsihealthpracticeboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Chinese Medicine Board of Australia
      https://www.chinesemedicineboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Chiropractic Board of Australia
      https://www.chiropracticboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Dental Board of Australia
      https://www.dentalboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Medical Board of Australia
      https://www.medicalboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx
      Medical Radiation

      Practice Board of Australia
      https://www.medicalradiationpracticeboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia
      https://www.nursingmidwiferyboard.gov.au/Registration-and-Endorsement/Forms.aspx

      Occupational Therapy Board of Australia
      https://www.occupationaltherapyboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Optometry Board of Australia
      https://www.optometryboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Osteopathy Board of Australia
      https://www.osteopathyboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Paramedicine Board of Australia
      https://www.paramedicineboard.gov.au/Registration/How-to-apply.aspx

      Pharmacy Board of Australia
      https://www.pharmacyboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Physiotherapy Board of Australia
      https://www.physiotherapyboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx

      Podiatry Board of Australia
      https://www.podiatryboard.gov.au/Registration-Endorsement/Forms.aspx

      Psychology Board of Australia
      https://www.psychologyboard.gov.au/Registration/Forms.aspx
       

      AHPRA Registration – Full Process

      To ease the registration process, you can apply online:

      1. First, you need to upload the basic form from here

      https://www.ahpra.gov.au/Registration/Online-upload.aspx, then

      2. You need to create an account at AHPRA, then
      3. You need to upload your certifying documents (true copy of your original documents), and
      4. At last, pay the fees asked.

      (Note: Don’t submit the original documents as AHPRA will not be able to return them to you)

      After you’re done with the above process, your educator provider will let you know your status after they submit your graduate results and all the details to AHPRA.

      Then, if selected, AHPRA publishes your name on the national register of health practitioners.

      (You can apply offline as well, but this will only slow down the process, so it’s recommended to apply online)

      Basic Requirements of Your Application Form

      Your application form should include:

      1. Relevant Fee
      2. Certifying Documents

      Your application form should be:

      1. The Application form should be a colored printout format, clear, visible & easy to understand.
      2. The application form should be less than 10MB, and
      3. You can submit the application form in any of the following formats (.JPG, .JPEG, .GIF, .PNG, .PDF, .TIF, .TIFF).

      Your application will also be assessed on your:

      1. Health Impairments

      Health Impairment is any type of physical or mental impairment, disability, condition, or disorder

      Any health impairments won’t stop you from practicing the profession but you need to inform in advance about it and how you are going to manage it. It’s necessary to tell each information and provide documents for the same so that the registration process doesn’t get delayed.

      2. Criminal History

      Your criminal history records are needed if any. An Australian Criminal History Check is conducted for each applicant. It can be a conviction for any type of offense in the past. Don’t hide anything and give a full criminal history report.
      National boards decide whether you’re eligible for the practice of the profession.

      Also, If you are over 18 and have lived overseas for more than six consecutive months of period, then you need to provide “an international criminal history check report” to AHPRA approved suppliers.

      3. English Language Skills

      As a registered practitioner, you need to converse with patients and clients in English so you should meet the standards set for English Language Skills by the National Board.

      Duration of Registration Process

      It takes 14 days minimum to analyze your full application form for AHPRA. If your application is considered incomplete, then the process can get delayed and the registration process might take up to six to eight weeks, i.e. 42 to 56 days.

      Fee Structure & Refund Policy of Registration Process

      Each national board has a different fee structure. Check out the table below to know about your board fee.

      National Board
      Fee Structure 2020-21 (Annually)

      Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health

      Practice Board of Australia ~ $154

      Chinese Medicine Board of Australia~ 
      $492

      Chiropractic Board of Australia~
      $530

      Dental Board of Australia ~ 
      $701 (Dentists & Specialists), (Dental Prosthetists) ~ 623 & (Dental Hygienists and Therapists)~ 346

      Medical Board of Australia~
      $811

      Medical Radiation P
      ractice Board of Australia~ $197

      Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia~
      $180

      Occupational Therapy Board of Australia~
      $116

      Optometry Board of Australia~
      $317

      Osteopathy Board of Australia~
      $376

      Paramedicine Board of Australia~
      $282

      Pharmacy Board of Australia~
      $420

      Physiotherapy Board of Australia~
      $148

      Podiatry Board of Australia~
      $378

      Psychology Board of Australia~
      $486

       

      Refund: You can always ask for a refund, in case you choose to opt-out, your registration being rejected, or because of any other circumstance.

      You need to fill the web inquiry form for this purpose.

      Customer Service Team for Registration Process

      Customer Service Team for any difficulty is 1300 419 495.

      Accreditation

      Accreditation, in simpler terms, is assessing the health practitioners’ eligibility to practice the profession in Australia.

      Eligibility Criteria

      1. Profession knowledge
      2. Skills & Mindset

      Accreditation is the common standard of quality set by the National Boards in Australia by the assigned authorities. AHPRA maintains transparency for the effective operation of the National Scheme.

      Role of Accreditation Authority

      1. The Accreditation Authority takes care of developing standards and recommends and advises the same to the National Board.
      2. They monitor education providers and programs of study for the smooth functioning of the profession in Australia.
      3. They take care of overseas qualified practitioners.

      These three functions are common for every 15 national boards which we have discussed above.

      Role of National Boards

      1. National Boards have powers to accept or refuse a program of study accredited by the accreditation authority.

      2. While the Accreditation Authority develops standards, National Boards have the power to approve them.


      3. The National Board has the right to set conditions on the approval of an accredited program of study.

      (Where Accreditation Authority and National Boards have to play different decision-making roles, they both follow the guiding principles of National Law.)

      FAQ Related to AHPRA

      What does AHPRA stand for?

      AHPRA stands for Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency.

      What is AHPRA?

      AHPRA is a regulation agency that regulates all healthcare practitioners in Australia and assists the national boards to execute the national scheme.

      AHPRA works to provide policies and set standards for the National Board. AHPRA works to protect the public by setting regulations for healthcare practitioners. They also set agreements with boards in regards to fees, budget, and services.

      AHPRA also monitors and audits registered healthcare practitioners for their alignment with the National Board Requirements.

      How long does AHPRA registration take?

      It takes 14 days minimum to analyze your full application form for AHPRA. If your application is considered incomplete, then the process can get delayed and the registration process might take up to six to eight weeks, i.e. 42 to 56 days.

      What is AHPRA registration?

      1. First, you need to upload the basic form.

        https://www.ahpra.gov.au/Registration/Online-upload.aspx, then

      2. You need to create an account at AHPRA, then

      3. You need to upload your certifying documents (true copy of your original documents), and

      4. At last, pay the fees asked.

        (Note: Don’t submit the original documents as AHPRA will not be able to return them to you)

      1. After you’re done with the above process, your educator provider will let you know your status after they submit your graduate results and all the details to AHPRA.

      1. Then, if selected, AHPRA publishes your name on the national register of health practitioners.

      (You can apply offline as well, but this will only slow down the process, so it’s recommended to apply online)