Rego fees to rise

Budget 2015: $50 note in blue piggybank

Registration fees for pharmacists for 2019-20 will see one of the highest rates of increase among the health professions

The national Boards for the regulated professions, and the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency, have announced the annual registration fees for 2019-20.

The Pharmacy Board of Australia set its annual renewal of general registration fee for 2019-2020 at $408, limiting the increase to indexation at 3%.

Pharmacist general registration in 2018-19 cost $396, while in 2017-18 the fee was $336.

Fees for four of the Boards – Chinese medicine, chiropractic, osteopathy and podiatry – were frozen to remain the same as last year.

Alongside pharmacy, the Medical Board, Medical Radiation Practice Board, Nursing and Midwifery Board all set their fees 3% higher for this year.

The Dental Board’s fees went up by 2.7%, while the Physiotherapy Board’s fees went up 2.9%.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Health Practice Board, Occupational Therapy Board, Paramedicine Board, Psychology Board and Optometry Board’s renewal fees increased by 2.5%.

The annual renewal fee will apply from 16 September 2019 and covers the registration period for most practitioners of 1 December 2019 to 30 November 2020.

The Boards and AHPRA say the fees fund the work of National Boards in partnership with AHPRA to keep the public safe by:

  • supporting national registration to ensure only qualified, competent health practitioners can practise in Australia
  • developing evidence-based and practice-tested standards, codes and guidelines
  • investigating concerns raised about registered health practitioners, and
  • approving accredited programs of study that lead to registration and endorsement.

Regulation of health practitioners in Australia is entirely funded by fees from registered practitioners, with no funding from governments.

AHPRA Chief Executive Officer Martin Fletcher said the 2019-2020 fees are intended to make sure regulation can respond to the increase in activity seen across the National Scheme.

“With over 744,000 practitioners registered and a significant increase in notifications, we work with each National Board to set fees that allow us to meet the expectations of the public and practitioners,” Mr Fletcher said.

“Registration fees fully cover all costs involved in regulating each of the 16 professions included in the National Scheme.

“AHPRA works closely with National Boards to make sure the fees set allow us to carry out our duties and together protect the public,” he said.

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  1. Yen Yab

    $408?! Stop paying too much!

    I sometimes wondered if AHPRA and the Board knows the impact of discounters and their predatory pricing on the health of the public? Take amoxycillin 250mg/5ml suspension as an example, it’s $5.50 for non Concession card holders at CWH. From dispensing, mixing, counselling and putting through the transaction, the profit is merely $4 or so. It’s actually a loss to a business if you consider the cost of hiring the pharmacist and the pharmacy assistant(s) involved in the process.

    This is just one of the many medications that get sold at $5.50 by discounters. It’s easy to say “don’t match it” but the reality of retail pharmacy and consumer expectation is different. With the closing down of so many large retail cooperates in recent years, it is proof that consumers are price conscious.

    By allowing these $5.50 throat cutting prices to continue, our Authorities truly don’t recognise they are pushing pharmacies to do more volume dispensings or sales in order to sustain ones business. It is our Authorities that allowed such practice to continue for so long that pharmacists are one of the lowest paid health professionals. It is our Authorities that allowed medications to be sold like normal commodities.

    For too long, people have complained that the pharmacy industry is ruined by discounters. I don’t think so. It is the system that we are in that ruined it… For this, I reckon $5.50 is a fair fee for our registration fee!

    • Paul Sapardanis

      I believe that the regulators need to place a minimum charge on all dispensing to ensure that minimum standards are met. eg workloads counselling etc. As it currently stands you can pay a patient to dispense their prescription. This is where we are now

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