Structure and Fuctions of Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency

08/12/2018 | 07:22 AM


The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) is the national organisation responsible for implementing the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (the National Scheme) across Australia.



AHPRA works in partnership with the National Boards to ensure the community has access to a safe health workforce across the 14 professions currently registered under the National Scheme. Together, AHPRA protects the public by regulating health professionals who practise in Australia. Public safety is always our number one priority. Every decision we make is guided by the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law (the National Law), as in force in each state and territory.

What does AHPRA do?

AHPRA delivers five core regulatory functions:

Professional standards

AHPRA provides policy advice to the National Boards regarding registration standards, codes and guidelines for practitioners.


In partnership with the National Boards, AHPRA ensures that only health practitioners with the skills and qualifications to provide competent and ethical care are registered to practise.







AHPRA manages complaints and concerns raised about the health, performance and conduct of individual health practitioners.








AHPRA monitors  and audit practitioners to make sure they are complying with Board requirements.


AHPRA works  with accreditation authorities and committees to ensure graduating students are suitably qualified and skilled to apply to register as a health practitioner.

How does AHPRA do to protect the public?


- Support the National Boards in their primary role of protecting the public.

- Support the National Boards in the development of registration standards, codes and guidelines.

 - Publish a national Register of practitioners so that important information about individual health practitioners is available to the public: www.ahpra.

- Manage registration and renewal processes for local and overseas-qualified health practitioners, and manage student registration.

- Manage notifications about the professional conduct, performance or health of registered health practitioners on behalf of the National Boards, except in New South Wales (NSW) where notifications are managed by health professional councils and the Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC). In Queensland, investigations may be undertaken by the Office of the Health Ombudsman (OHO).

- Work with health complaints entities (HCEs) to make sure the appropriate organisation deals with the community’s concerns about health practitioners.


- Provide advice to the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council (AHWMC) about the administration of the National Scheme.



Who oversees AHPRA’s work?

The Agency Management Committee is appointed by the AHWMC to oversee the work of AHPRA. In 2016/17, the Agency Management Committee members were:  - Mr Michael Gorton AM (Chair) 

-  Dr Peggy Brown 

- Ms Karen Crawshaw PSM

- Mr Ian Smith PSM

- Ms Jenny Taing

-  Ms Barbara Yeoh AM

-  Mr David Taylor (to 11/04/17)

-  Professor Merrilyn Walton AM (to 11/04/17)

-  Ms Philippa Smith AM (15/06/17–current)

- Dr Susan Young (14/06/17–current)

Who are the National Boards?

The National Boards are responsible for the regulation of 14 health professions, setting registration standards, codes, guidelines and policies that all health practitioners must meet in order to be registered.

The 14 National Boards are:

-  Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia

- Chinese Medicine Board of Australia

- Chiropractic Board of Australia

- Dental Board of Australia

-  Medical Board of Australia

-  Medical Radiation Practice Board of Australia

-  Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia

-  Occupational Therapy Board of Australia

-  Optometry Board of Australia

-  Osteopathy Board of Australia

-  Pharmacy Board of Australia

-  Physiotherapy Board of Australia

-  Podiatry Board of Australia, and

-  Psychology Board of Australia. National Board members are appointed by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council (AHWMC).

Their important work is funded by fees paid by registrants.​