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Regulation at work: The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce in 2015/16

14 Feb 2017

A profession-specific annual report summary that looks into the work of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia (the Board) over the 12 months to 30 June 2016 has now been published.

The report draws on data from the 2015/16 annual report by AHPRA and the National Boards, and offers insights into how the Board has worked to protect the public by regulating this relatively new health profession.

Information includes the number of applications for registration, outcomes of criminal history checks and segmentation of the registrant base by gender, age and principal place of practice.

Notifications information includes the number of complaints or concerns received, matters open and closed during the year, types of complaint, and matters involving immediate action.

Insights into the profession include:

  • 587 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health professionals were registered in 2015/16. 
  • Registration for the profession grew by 50% year on year (from 391 in 2014/15), making it the fastest growing profession within the National Scheme. 
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health practitioners accounted for less than 0.1% of all registered health practitioners in Australia. 
  • 77% of these registrants are women; 23% are men. 
  • The Northern Territory was the principal place of practice for the majority of practitioners (210); Tasmania was home to the fewest (3). 
  • The age bracket with the most practitioners was 50–54 (106 registrants). 
  • 22 practitioners were under 25 years of age; four were over 70. 
  • 292 people registered as students of the profession, an increase of 109% year on year. 
  • As part of the registration process, 396 criminal history checks were carried out. Of 193 disclosable court outcomes, one required regulatory action. 
  • Five notifications (complaints or concerns) were lodged about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health practitioners during the year, equating to less than 1% of the profession.

To download this report, or to view the main 2015/16 annual report and summary reports by state or territory, visit our microsite.

In the coming month, AHPRA and the National Boards will publish summaries that break down 2015/16 data for the remaining 13 boards in the National Scheme.

For more information

  • Visit the AHPRA website 
  • Lodge an online enquiry form 
  • For registration enquiries: 1300 419 495 (within Australia) +61 3 9275 9009 (overseas callers) 
  • For media enquiries: (03) 8708 9200
Page reviewed 14/02/2017