23 Jun 2011

Medical Indemnity Industry Calls for Rapid Changes to Mandatory Reporting Requirements for Treating Practitioners

Following the recent release of the Senate Committee Report on The Administration of Health Practitioner Registration by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Authority (AHPRA), the Medical Indemnity Industry Association of Australia (MIIAA) calls for a rapid response to the issues raised around mandatory reporting by treating colleagues.
MIIAA Chairman, Dr Andrew Miller, stated that he was pleased to see support from the whole Committee for a revision to the mandatory reporting provisions.
Recommendation 10 of the Report states that The committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government seek the support of the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council to implement a review of the mandatory notifications requirements and in particular take into account the Western Australia model of mandatory reporting.
"Mandatory reporting has been a key issue for the medical indemnity industry since it was introduced, " stated Dr Miller.
"The member organisations of MIIAA are committed to ensuring a high standard of healthcare delivery to the Australian public. This includes providing support and assistance to medical practitioners dealing with personal circumstances that impact upon their  professional practice and may require some level of treatment."
"The requirement on a treating practitioner to notify the Regulation Authority about their colleagues in these circumstances can seriously limit the effectiveness of the doctor patient relationship and has apparently already stopped some health practitioners from seeking any help, potentially resulting in even higher risks for patients."
"In Western Australia, mandatory reporting of colleagues and other registered health care professionals by their personal treating doctors does not apply and it is pleasing to note that this position is widely supported by the medical colleges and associations as well as other health care professionals."
With such consensus around the issue, Dr Miller urges Australia's Health Ministers and Attorneys General to move quickly on the recommendation of the Senate Committee and have the Western
Australian version of the mandatory reporting requirements introduced in all the other states.

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