How Insurance Works

Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Amendment Bill – First Reading – Video 5


I call Jenny Martha thank you madam Speaker and thank you for the opportunity to stand and speak on behalf of New Zealand first on the health practitioners competence assurance amendment bill New Zealand first will support this bill and would like to also congratulate the Minister for finally getting these much-needed amendments before the house so we acknowledge you the Honourable dr. David Clark on doing that now these amendments have been through a number of reviews and have been widely discussed amongst the public and with various health practitioners and the regulatory bodies that are affected but they have languished for years somehow the amendments seem to have suffered the same fate as the previous Minister’s leadership aspirations we have waited a long time for this legislation to come before the house and it’s a credit to the new minister that he has managed to get things moving quickly now one of the most treasured aspects of our accident compensation scheme madam Speaker is that we don’t have great piles of litigation by tort lawyers clogging up our courts suing doctors and medical institutions under ACCC we have a no-fault basis which means in most cases we have we have forgotten our privilege to sue at fault parties now the flipside of this though is that we’d better make sure that anyone practicing medicine is a competent professional who knows exactly what they’re doing and that is why New Zealand first strongly supports getting the health practitioners competence assurance amendment bill passed into law now the health practitioners competence competence assurance act 2003 provides provided a framework for the regulation of health practitioners the law is designed to protect the public by preventing unqualified people from claiming that their registered practitioners it regulates those health professionals where there is a risk of harm from malpractice it doesn’t regulate professions considered to have low risk of harm like traditional Chinese medicine for example the Act also established separate regulatory authorities like the Medical Council of New Zealand to enact the legislation for each group of health practitioners now the associations cover chiropractors dentists dietitians radiographers doctors midwives nurses occupational therapists optometrists osteopaths pharmacists physiotherapists podiatrists psychologists and psychotherapists and these health practitioner authorities were tasked with describing their professions and scopes of practice and determining what qualifications are appropriate they’re also required to register and a–shoe practising certificates review review and promote ongoing professional competence and judge whether practitioners are unfit to practice by establishing Professional Conduct committees to investigate misconduct and set the standards for clinical and cultural competence and ethical conduct madam Speaker this is why this act is such a critical part of the health system in New Zealand this is where the rubber hits the road when it comes to whether we can trust the health system is safe for all of our fellow citizens what the amendments are seeking to do is make sure that the act is working and that it can be seen to be working we want to know that the responsible authorities are performing and that their decisions are visible and clearly understood by adopting many of the suggestions in the 2009 and 2012 operational reviews we believe the amendments will ensure the various professional associations will be much more transparent with the decisions that they make the amendments also encouraged the various health disciplines to collaborate so that there is more information about the people providing the health services it is long overdue now more specifically the amendments will require the health practitioner authorities to develop naming policies which will determine the circumstances on which practitioners whose competence has been investigated by the authorities are published furthermore we want people who may be affected or professionally interested parties to be notified about these decisions the bill also requires the professional associations to provide the director-general of health professional and basic personal information about registered health professionals this will help with workforce planning and development as part of the drive to produce clear evidence that the associations are meeting their expectations regular performance reviews will be undertaken and these reviews will also encourage the various authorities to collaborate with the others the bill also requires the authorities to fund the general administration costs of the health practitioners disciplinary tribunal penance pica New Zealand first generally supports the amendments but we do have a few concerns and we hope that these could be ironed out in the Select Committee now the Act still doesn’t prevent unregistered practitioners from setting up shop and offering health services outside the associations so we’d like to see if an ambulance can be placed at the top of that particular cliff and we also want to make sure that health associated occupations that on the face of it carry a low level of risk are not exempt from the regulations if there are indeed real risks and carrying out their services now take an example of the beauty therapy industry injecting facial filler that’s now quite common but it does have the potential to cause blindness and blood clots if the beauty therapist is incompetent now beauty therapy does carry serious risks and the public should feel confident that the therapists are in fact well-trained New Zealand first would also like to look at the status of medics and where they fit within the framework of this legislation and in fact we know that the paramedics themselves want this to happen paramedics australasia is the professional body representing paramedics in New Zealand and Australia they want the title paramedic to be protected and New Zealand law so that it can be used by those who have attained a nationally recognised standard of training now it’s pretty obvious that a paramedic who hasn’t been properly trained poses a serious risk paramedics they’re the first responders and usually the people that are there in those vital minutes between an incident and hospital now at some point it is likely that paramedics will be regulated under to the health practitioner practicing as competence assurance act and we would like to see this happen now we’re also concerned that some practitioners who provide services to the disabled the people providing the various services are subject to the code of health and disability consumers rights whether they’re regulated or not and the trouble is that if something goes wrong some practitioners may not belong to a professional body that can take action homecare workers may not pose a significant risk but people receiving care should be entitled to know that the caregivers are capable so a wider discussion on me who needs to be regulated and how we regulate health professionals in New Zealand should be had but we believe this can be achieved during the Select Committee process so in conclusion madam Speaker New Zealand first supports the health practitioners competence assurance amendment bill Kyoto madam Speaker


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *