Ministers agree to national health complaints arrangements

21 May 2009

The Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council has agreed on the practical implementation of the new National Registration and Accreditation Scheme for the Health Professions, as reported in its communiqué of 8 May 2009.

As a result of the consultation process and the feedback received, the Ministerial Council determined that a number of changes should be made to the original proposals, including:

  • Simplified complaints arrangements for the public
    In addition to the services provided by health complaints commissions, assistance will be provided to members of the public who need help to make a complaint. This new arrangement aims to make the complaints process simpler.
  • Handling of complaints
    The Ministers have agreed to a flexible model for the administrative arrangements for handling complaints.

The National Law and/or State law, depending on each jurisdiction’s choice, will provide the legislative framework for investigations and prosecutions and the definitions of offences and contraventions. Outcomes will be recorded as part of a single national framework.

It will be up to NSW to decide whether the prosecution and investigation functions are carried out by the national boards or the existing arrangement remain in NSW where the Health Care Complaints Commission carries out the investigation and prosecution of registered health practitioners.

More information about the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme for the Health Professions