Podiatry Board of Australia - 2021/22 annual summary

2021/22 annual summary

Podiatry in 2021/22

Snapshot

5,992 podiatrists1

  • Up 3.6% from 2020/21
  • 0.7% of all registered health practitioners
  • 186 podiatrists endorsed for scheduled medicines

0.8% identified as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander

59.1% female; 40.9% male

Age

Age: <25 5.0%, 25-34 39.7%, 35-44 25.0%, 45-54 18.2%, 55-64 10.1%, 65-74 1.9%, >75 0.2%

Registration type

5,782 general
169 non-practising
41 general and specialist
5,992 total

Regulating

Notifications

63 notifications lodged with Ahpra about

57 podiatrists

  • 102 notifications about 89 podiatrists made Australia-wide, including HPCA and OHO data
  • 1.5% of the profession

Sources of notifications

Sources of notifications: 49.2% Patient, relative or member of the public, 15.9% Health complaints entity, 12.7% Other practitioner, 4.8% Board initiated, 3.2% Employer, 14.3% Other

Most common types of complaint

Most common types of complaint: 28.6% Clinical care, 15.9% Breach of non-offence provision – National Law, 6.3% Behaviour, 4.8% Communication, 4.8% Documentation, 4.8% Health  impairment, 1.6% Confidentiality, 33.2% Other

4 immediate actions taken

7 mandatory notifications received

  • 4 about professional standards

Notifications closed

Notifications closed: 56 notifications closed, 21.4% conditions imposed on registration or an undertaking accepted, 8.9% cautioned or reprimanded, 1.8% registration suspended, 23.2% referred to another body or retained by a health complaints entity, 44.6% no further action

Monitoring

25 practitioners monitored for health, performance and/or conduct during the year

22 cases being monitored at 30 June:

  • 2 for conduct
  • 2 for health
  • 8 for performance
  • 3 for prohibited practitioner/student
  • 7 for suitability/eligibility for registration

Criminal offence complaints

5 criminal offence complaints made

  • 3 about title protection
  • 2 about advertising breaches

4 closed

Referred to an adjudication body

1 matter decided by a tribunal

No matters decided by a panel

Appeals

No appeals lodged

From the Chair

Highlights this year

The Podiatry Board of Australia approved new professional capabilities for podiatrists and podiatric surgeons, which took effect on 1 January 2022. They:

  • describe the threshold or minimum level of professional capability needed for registration as a podiatrist or podiatric surgeon
  • reflect contemporary podiatry and podiatric surgery practice in Australia
  • are founded on person-centred, evidence-based practice
  • make cultural safety a key component of safe care, particularly for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.

We published an animated video and FAQs and met with stakeholders to support implementation.

We acknowledge the Podiatry Accreditation Committee for their work in developing and consulting on the professional capabilities.

Regulatory response to COVID-19

In response to the ongoing impact of the pandemic we continued to adopt a flexible approach to continuing professional development.

In September, Ahpra and the National Boards established the 2021 pandemic sub-register, enabling practitioners to return to practice for up to 12 months to support the COVID-19 response across Australia.

A joint statement on COVID-19 and vaccines was released by the National Boards, Ahpra, the Health Care Complaints Commission, the Office of the Health Ombudsman and the Therapeutic Goods Administration. The National Boards and Ahpra also published guidance for health practitioners about facilitating access to care in a COVID-19 environment.

Accreditation

The Podiatry Accreditation Committee reported on podiatry program monitoring, including impacts of COVID-19.

The Board approved new accreditation standards developed by the committee, including for entrylevel podiatry programs; for podiatric surgery programs; and for education programs leading to qualifications for endorsement of registration for scheduled medicines. The standards started on 1 January. All programs are now assessed against the new accreditation standards.

The terms of the inaugural committee members ended on 30 June. Four members were reappointed for a three-year period, and the Board appointed two new members. We acknowledge the valuable contribution of retiring committee members Assistant Professor Sara Jones and Dr Lloyd Reed.

Registration standards, codes and guidelines

The Board’s registration standard for Specialist registration for the podiatry specialty of podiatric surgery sets out the requirements for specialist registration. We consulted on a revised specialist registration standard as it was due for review. The changes consulted on were primarily editorial in nature to clarify existing requirements and no substantive changes were proposed.

The Board released the cross-profession
Supervised practice framework.

Stakeholder engagement

The Board’s program of stakeholder engagement includes regular meetings with the Australian Podiatry Association, Podiatry Council of New South Wales and Podiatry Accreditation Committee.

The Board released a revised Code of conduct
in partnership with several other Boards.

Other news

To support the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health and Cultural Safety Strategy, Board and committee members participated in cultural safety training. In December we welcomed new practitioner member Mr Anthony Short and community member Ms Raelene Harrison. The Board acknowledges the valuable contribution of retiring Board members Dr Paul Bennett and Dr Janice Davies OAM.

Associate Professor Cylie Williams


  1. Throughout this report, the term ‘podiatrist’ refers to both podiatrists and podiatric surgeons unless otherwise specified.
 
 
Page reviewed 22/11/2022