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New era in regulation from 1 July 2010

Update from the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia

Australia’s new national registration and accreditation scheme begins on 1 July 2010. From this date, a new National Law (the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law Act 2009) will come into effect and 10 health professions will be regulated by the same piece of legislation.

For the first time, there will be one National Board setting standards and policies for the regulation of all nurses and midwives registered in Australia. The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) will be supported in this task by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), which will be providing services to each of the National Boards.

The NMBA will also be supported by State and Territory Boards, which will continue to make decisions about individual notifications and registration issues, guided by national policy and delegations.

What about me?

The process of moving to the national system should be straightforward for most nurses and midwives. All nurses and midwives who are registered on 30 June 2010 will automatically transition to the national scheme until the end date of their registration.

Every registrant will be sent a letter from the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia from the end of April, detailing the transition process and detailing the type of registration they will transition to.

In general, close to 300,000 nurses and midwives will transition to the type of registration that matches their current registration, but their registration category may change.

The Board has no intention to change any practitioner’s scope of practice. Please read the letter carefully; check your proposed registration; and provide feedback to AHPRA if there are any errors.

Update your contact details now

Please make sure you have updated your contact details with your current registration board, so up to date contact information is passed onto the National Board.

Registration fees
The National Board will be communicating the new national registration fee to the profession in April. There will be no cross-profession subsidisation in the national scheme.

Registration requirements: What’s new?

Under the National Law, all nurses and midwives will need to comply with a range of new registration standards. Obligations will include requirements:
• for professional indemnity insurance
• for continuing professional development
• in relation to the nature, extent, period and recency of previous practice
• for English language skills by applicants for registration
• for criminal history checks.

Please go to the NWBA website for more information about the impact of the national scheme on your registration.

National register
There will be a National Register of nurses and midwives published online. The register will show details of any current conditions on practice except health, when the register will show that health conditions apply but will not routinely list the details of the conditions.

Where can I get more information?
Go to the websites for the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia at www.nursingmidwiferyboard.gov.au, AHPRA at www.ahpra.gov.au or RCNA at www.rcna.org.au.

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