2018/19 summary

Paramedicine 2018/19

Snapshot of the profession

  • 17,323 paramedics
  • This is the first year of registration
  • 2.3% of all registered health practitioners
  • 43.0% female; 56.9% male; 0.1% intersex or indeterminate

Age

Under 25 years old: 9%, 25-34 years old: 34.5%, 35-44 years old: 22.6%, 45-54 years old: 21.5%, 55-64 years old: 11.4%, 65-74 years old: 1.0%, Over 75 years old: 0.0%

Regulating the profession

  • 31 notifications lodged with AHPRA1
    • 2 notifications were made about students
  • Australia-wide, including Health Professional Councils Authority (HPCA) in NSW and Office of the Health Ombudsman (OHO) in Queensland data, 101 registered paramedics – or 0.6% – had notifications made about them
  • 18 notifications closed
    • 16.7% referred to another body or retained by a health complaints entity (HCE)
    • 83.3% no further action taken
  • Immediate action taken twice
  • 12 mandatory notifications received
    • 8 about professional standards
  • 2 paramedics monitored for health, performance and/or conduct since 1 December
  • 21 cases were being monitored at 30 June
    • 2 prohibited practitioner/student
    • 19 for suitability/eligibility for registration
  • 13 criminal offence complaints were made and 7 closed
    • 11 new matters related to title protection
    • 1 to practice protection
    • 1 to ‘another’ offence
  • Matters decided by a tribunal: 0
  • Matters decided by a panel: 0
  • Decisions appealed: 0

1Unless stated otherwise, all notification data is AHPRA data.

Sources of notifications: 45.2% Employer, 19.4% Patient, relative or member of the public, 16.1% Other practitioner, 6.5% Education provider, 6.5% HCE, 6.5% Other

Most common types of complaint: 38.7% Clinical care, 9.7% Health impairment, 6.5% Criminal offence – National Law, 6.5% Boundary violation, 6.5% Behaviour, 32.2% Other

A report on the year from the Chair

The Paramedicine Board of Australia started receiving inaugural applications from people for registration as a paramedic on 3 September 2018 with 1 December 2018 confirmed by the Ministerial Council as the participation day for paramedicine.

The Board continued its work to ensure that the essential regulatory infrastructure of policies, codes and guidelines was in place to support the regulation of paramedics from 1 December 2018. Additionally, to further support the transition of the profession into regulation, the Board developed and published an expanded supervised practice framework. It provides expanded scope for paramedics with diploma-level qualifications to have supervised practice recognised or to undertake further supervised practice to be qualified for registration via the grandparenting pathways.

Registration

From 1 December 2018, only a paramedic registered by the Paramedicine Board of Australia is able to use the title ‘paramedic’. However, applicants who had applied prior to 1 December 2018, but were not yet registered, could continue to use this protected title while their application was being processed. Similar arrangements were also made for those who had applied after 1 December 2018 to use the protected title up to 28 February 2019, provided they met the criteria specified in the National Law.

By 29 March 2019, over 17,900 applications for registration had been received and over 16,200 practitioners were granted first registration as a paramedic. The volume of applications for registration was higher than anticipated.

Communications and engagement

The Board conducted an extensive communications campaign before participation day to ensure that all paramedics were aware of their obligations under the National Scheme and that they understood the implications of the regulation of paramedics starting on 1 December 2018.

The campaign required coordinated engagement across jurisdictions, through a variety of channels and with a broad range of stakeholders. Accordingly, communications with organising groups, such as employers, professional associations and unions, along with broad public communications, were critical in ensuring the successful dissemination of information to potential registrants.

Large open forums were held in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide, with smaller meetings attended by the Chair, the Executive Officer and the local board member in Canberra, Perth, Hobart and Darwin and at the Australian Defence Force (ADF) training facility at Bandiana. Other meetings were held with governments, unions and health complaints entities. The forums in Melbourne and Sydney were recorded and were available for download from the Board’s website.

Accreditation

In November 2018, the Board published that the accreditation function for paramedicine would be undertaken by a committee appointed by the Board. The membership of the Paramedicine Accreditation Committee was announced on 28 March 2019 and it will exercise the accreditation functions for paramedicine for three years, at which time arrangements will be reviewed in accordance with the National Law.

The inaugural members are:

  • Emeritus Professor Eileen Willis, Chair
  • Associate Professor William Lord, Co-Deputy Chair
  • Mr Alan Morrison, Co-Deputy Chair
  • Associate Professor Helen Webb
  • Mr Anthony Hucker ASM
  • Mr Richard Larsen ASM
  • Mr Martin Nichols.

Thank you

Tremendous thanks must go to everyone who has contributed to making the regulation of paramedics such a success. Board members, AHPRA, the profession, employers and government have all played a critical role in effecting the regulation of paramedicine as a profession under the National Law – thank you.

Associate Professor Stephen Gough ASM, Chair

 
 
Page reviewed 30/06/2020