‘Paramedic’ to become a protected title

31 Aug 2018

Next week the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) will start to receive applications for paramedic registration in preparation for the start of paramedic regulation under the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (National Scheme) later this year.

When paramedicine becomes a regulated profession, the title ‘paramedic’ will become a protected title. This means that only people who are registered with the Paramedicine Board of Australia (the National Board) will be able to lawfully call themselves a paramedic.

Paramedicine Board of Australia Chair Associate Professor Stephen Gough said, ‘Title protection is an important way that the National Scheme helps to protect the public. When a person calls themselves a paramedic you can be assured that they are suitably trained and qualified to practise the profession and have met the national standards for registration.’

All paramedics are able to apply for registration by one of the various pathways prescribed in the National Law1, the requirements of which vary depending on their qualifications and experience.

For example, if a paramedic holds an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) level 5 qualification (diploma) from a training body outside of the New South Wales Ambulance Service, they can demonstrate they are qualified for registration by:

  • showing five years of competent practice as a paramedic in the past 10 years, or
  • undertaking 1700 hours of supervised practice that meets the Board’s requirements, or
  • undertaking a competence assessment.

‘Registration may not be for everybody and there may be some who will choose to work using other job titles such as medics, emergency medical technicians, ambulance officers and first responders,’ Associate Professor Gough said.

‘While people in those positions will continue to hold important, and possibly lifesaving roles in the community, only those who meet the requirements for registration set by the National Board will be eligible to use the title ‘paramedic’ in Australia.’

The National Board has received feedback, including from private practising paramedics, that some aspects of the policy framework could be improved by further explanation and clarification. The issues requiring additional clarification have been further informed by face-to-face meetings with some private industry paramedics. A number of these issues relate to supervised practice. As such, the National Board will be publishing more information on expanded opportunities to undertake supervised practice in the near future.

More information

Check the Board’s website and subscribe for updates on registration, fees and to stay informed about upcoming stakeholder events.

1Health Practitioner Regulation National Law, as in force in each state and territory.

 
 
Page reviewed 31/08/2018