Nurses have written to the NSW Nurses Association expressing their confusion over the new registration guidelines.
Confusion includes lengthy delays in renewing registration, frustration with the amount of paperwork and anger with delays in the return of phone calls and email.
In response, we have decided to do a series on the new National Registration guidelines discussing the changes and asking for feedback from readers.
Background: On 1 July 2010, the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law Act 2009 introduced the regulation of 10 health professions by nationally consistent legislation. There is now one National Board setting standards and policies for the regulation of each of the 10 Australian health professions covered by the National Law. Each National Board is supported in this task by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).
Several changes were implemented when the new national registration guidelines commenced. These included:
- Fees: A single national fee for all nurses and midwives was put into effect.
- Mandatory notifications: One of the new aspects of the legislation for nurses and midwives in NSW is mandatory notifications. This means if a nurse or midwife has a reasonable belief that another health practitioner is a threat to public safety, they are mandated to make a notification to the National Board.
- Student registration: From 2011 a new category of student registration will be launched. Students will not pay fees, nor be put on the public register. They also won’t be required to register individually: the education provider will forward all the names of those enrolled on courses to the Board.
- Continuing professional development (CPD): All nurses and midwives who are engaged in any form of nursing or midwifery practice will be required to complete CPD that is relevant to their context of practice. This will require 20 hours of CPD per year which involves learning activities to maintain and enhance knowledge and skills pertaining to their area of practice.
- Recency of practice: Nurses and midwives must have undertaken sufficient practice within the preceding five years, for a period equivalent to a minimum of three months fulltime, to demonstrate competence in their profession. Practice is defined as any role, whether remunerated or not, in which the individual uses skill and knowledge as a nurse or midwife.
- Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII): Nurses and midwives must not practise their professions unless they are covered in the conduct of their practice by appropriate PII arrangements.
What are your concerns about the new registration guidelines? Have you experienced any problems?
Share them with us below.