Annual report tells how the Podiatry Board of Australia took a risk-based approach to regulation in 2016/17

15 Nov 2017

The Annual Report for AHPRA and the National Boards for the year to 30 June 2017 is now available to view online.

Over the past year, registration with the Podiatry Board of Australia (the Board) grew by 5.8% to just under 5,000 registered podiatrists and podiatric surgeons. The podiatry profession makes up 0.7% of all registered health practitioners in the National Accreditation and Registration Scheme (the National Scheme), according to information published today in the annual report by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).

The 2016/17 annual report, produced by AHPRA and the 14 National Boards, is a comprehensive record of the National Scheme for the year ending 30 June 2017. The Board works in partnership with AHPRA to regulate the podiatry profession nationally.

‘This year, a key focus for the Board was progressing the review of the Board’s requirements for endorsement for scheduled medicines for the profession, which included consulting on a proposed revised registration standard and related guidelines,’ said Ms Catherine Loughry, Chair of the Podiatry Board of Australia.

‘We also carried out a study of our data into the types of complaints [notifications] made about podiatric surgeons, as well as sharing the outcomes of an earlier study into complaints about podiatrists and podiatric surgeons. The data analysis was conducted by AHPRA’s Risk-based Regulation Unit and the results will inform regulatory policy and future planning by the Board.’

A snapshot of the profession in 2016/17:

  • Easy to renew: This year saw the largest online registration renewal rate ever achieved across all 14 registered health professions. Over 98.5% of all registered health practitioners renewed online and on time, with 98.5% of podiatrists also renewing online.
  • Increased registration year on year: The podiatry profession makes up 0.7% of all health practitioners registered in Australia, and the registrant base continues to grow (up 5.8% from 2015/16 to 4,925 registrants).
  • Students on the register: As at 30 June 2017, there were 1,559 registered podiatry students (down 9.3% from 2015/16).
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders on the register: According to a workforce survey that practitioners can choose to fill out at the time of registration/renewal, 0.7% of the podiatry profession are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander (35 podiatrists nationally).
  • Complaints received about podiatrists: 42 notifications (complaints or concerns) were lodged with AHPRA about podiatrists in 2016/17. This equates to 1.3% of the profession.
  • Four mandatory notifications were made about podiatrists: three were about standards, one was about alcohol or drugs.
  • Immediate action was taken once during the year to suspend or cancel a podiatrist’s registration while the matter was investigated.
  • Of the 47 matters closed about podiatrists in 2016/17: 10.6% resulted in the Board accepting an undertaking or conditions being imposed on the practitioner’s registration; 17% resulted in a caution or reprimand, and 68.1% resulted in no further action being taken.
  • Statutory offence complaints: There were 20 statutory offence complaints made about podiatrists in 2016/17 (down from 26 in 2015/16). The majority (17) were about advertising breaches; three related to use of a protected title.
  • Active monitoring cases as at 30 June 2017: There were five active monitoring cases during the year that related to podiatrists being actively monitored during the year for health and/or performance

‘There are now almost 680,000 registered health practitioners across Australia,’ said AHPRA CEO Mr Martin Fletcher. ‘This Annual Report highlights our strong and shared commitment with the Board to ensure the public has access to a competent, qualified registered health workforce and to take decisive action when required to keep the community safe.’

To view the 2016/17 annual report, along with supplementary tables that segment data across categories such as registration, notifications, statutory offences, tribunals and appeals, and monitoring and compliance, see Annual Report microsite.

In the coming weeks, AHPRA and the National Boards will also publish summaries of our work regulating health practitioners in each of the 14 registered health professions. Jurisdictional reports, which present data on registered health practitioners in each state and territory will be published in December.

For more information

 
 
Page reviewed 15/11/2017