Osteopathy Board of Australia - Revising registration standards was a focus for the Osteopathy Board of Australia in 2015/16
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Revising registration standards was a focus for the Osteopathy Board of Australia in 2015/16

10 Nov 2016

In order to make the registration and regulation of osteopaths as seamless and transparent as possible, the Osteopathy Board of Australia revised five core Registration standards in 2015/16, according to information published by AHPRA today in its annual report.

The 2015/16 annual report by AHPRA and the national health practitioner boards is a comprehensive record of the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme for the 12 months ending 30 June 2016.

‘It’s important that we give osteopaths all the information and tools they need to provide the public with the best possible healthcare,’ said Dr Nikole Grbin, Chair of the Osteopathy Board of Australia. ‘Communicating the changes in registration standards was a priority for us in 2015/16.’

The Board informed registrants of the changes in newsletters and a well-attended webinar, and a video was produced, outlining what graduates need to do to before they can register and practise as osteopaths. Information on the renewal process was also covered, and the resource Osteopathy registration: what you need to know was published on the Board website.

‘The revised standards outline the professional obligations of practitioners,’ said Dr Grbin, ‘so patient safety is always top-of-mind.’

More highlights of the past year include:

  • Increased registration: As of 30 June 2016, there were 2,094 osteopaths registered across Australia, an increase of 4.7% from the previous year. 

  • More registered students of osteopathy: There were 1,759 registered osteopathy students as of 30 June 2016, an increase of 47.9% from last year. 

  • Greater awareness of the National Scheme: A nationwide campaign aimed at employers, practitioners and the general public rolled out across social media and in print advertising. 

  • Growth in notifications: There were 10,082 notifications received during the year across all 14 health professions, an increase of 19.7% nationally (representing 1.5% of the registration base). The top three notifier complaints related to clinical care (41.8%), medication issues (11.5%) and health impairment (10.7%). Just under half of all notifications were made by a patient, relative or member of the public. AHPRA closed 5,227 matters in the year. 

  • More notifications received about osteopaths: In 2015/16 there were 23 notifications received about osteopaths nationally (including data from the Health Professional Councils Authority in NSW), an increase of 76.9% from the previous year. Notifications about osteopaths represented just 0.2% of all notifications received by AHPRA (excluding HPCA). 

  • Less than 1% of all statutory offence matters related to osteopathy: AHPRA received 12 new complaints about possible statutory offences by osteopaths in the past year, representing less than 0.9% of all statutory offence matters received in 2015/16. Almost all new matters related to the use of protected titles and advertising concerns. 

  • More health practitioners overall: There were almost 20,000 more registrants in 2015/16 across the 14 regulated professions than there were last year, totalling 657,621 health practitioners nationally. Student registrations increased by more than 11,000 registrants year-on-year, totalling 153,710. 

  • A simplified renewal process: Online registration renewals reached a new high across all professions - with over 98% of all registrants renewing online and on time, making it easier for health practitioners to renew their registration each year.

For more data and information relating to the Osteopathy Board of Australia in 2015/16, please see the 2015/16 annual report. The report provides a nationwide snapshot of the work of AHPRA and the Boards and highlights a multi profession approach to risk-based regulation with a clear focus on ensuring that Australians have a safe and competent health workforce.

‘The regulation of over 660,000 registered health practitioners across 14 health professions and eight states and territories is an important task,’ said AHPRA CEO Mr Martin Fletcher. ‘There are many things to consider in regulation – but there is only one main focus, and that is public safety.’

Supplementary tables that break down data across categories such as registrations, notifications, statutory offences, tribunals and appeals, and monitoring and compliance can also be found on the annual report website.

In the coming months, AHPRA and the National Boards will also publish summaries of our work regulating health practitioners in every state and territory, which will be released in late 2016. Expanded, profession-specific summaries will also be released and progressively published from early 2017.

For more information

  • Lodge an online enquiry 
  • For registration enquiries: 1300 419 495 (within Australia) +61 3 9275 9009 (overseas callers) 
  • For media enquiries: (03) 8708 9200

Download a PDF of this Media release - Revising registration standards was a focus for the Osteopathy Board of Australia in 2015/16 (114 KB,PDF)

Page reviewed 10/11/2016