Nurse becomes 700,000th registered health practitioner

17 May 2018

AHPRA and the National Boards have welcomed the 700,000th health practitioner registered in Australia since the start of national regulation in 2010.

Victoria-based enrolled nurse Alison Tregeagle graduated in March 2018 as a mature-aged nursing graduate. Her registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) was confirmed and published this week on the national Register of practitioners. While Alison was studying for her Diploma in Nursing, she was working in part time and casual jobs at an aged care facility in Brighton, a hospital in Moorabbin and a pharmacy in Cheltenham, Victoria, and is excited about embarking on her new career as a nurse.

‘I am very excited to get my career in nursing started. Getting my registration is the final step in what feels like the culmination of 20-plus years of trying to find a job that I love doing. I came to nursing later in life. My grandmother, aunt, mother and sister were or are all nurses, but at first I didn’t follow in their footsteps. I worked in the healthcare sector in various roles, and enjoyed the flexibility this gave me to support my family life with my three children, but always felt I should have or could have been doing something more gratifying.

‘Once the timing for my family was right, I decided to take the plunge into nursing. I started testing the waters by getting my Aged Care Certificate. Studying to be an enrolled nurse was the next step to getting into the career I really wanted. I found I love nursing, I love being part of a caring and trusted profession, and I love being able to use whatever skills I have, whether it’s something I’ve learned or just who I am to make people feel better, even if it’s just by momentarily putting a smile on their face. It’s so refreshing and rewarding to have ended the week, not having ticked off the tasks set by a manager, or achieving a sales number, but by feeling I have actually made a difference to someone, however small that difference may have been. Today I can say I am an enrolled nurse – and I’m really proud of that fact,’ she said.

Reaching the 700,000th registered practitioner milestone comes almost eight years after the launch of the National Scheme on 1 July 2010, when AHPRA and the National Boards for 10 health professions began their regulatory partnership governed by a nationally consistent National Law.

In 2010 over half a million health practitioners registered for the first time under the new National Scheme, with a further four health professions joining in 2012 and growing the number of registered health practitioners to more than 590,000 for the year to 30 June 2013. This year the number will grow further as paramedics join the National Scheme in late 2018.

‘Reaching a total of 700,000 health practitioners registered to practise their profession in Australia is a significant milestone,’ AHPRA Chief Executive Officer Martin Fletcher said.

‘Our first annual report showed there were slightly more than 530,000 registered health practitioners across Australia as at 30 June 2011 so hitting 700,000 represents significant growth over that time. It demonstrates that regulation is working for workforce mobility to support the delivery of health services to Australians.’

NMBA Chair, Associate Professor Lynette Cusack, congratulated Alison on her registration. When reflecting on this milestone she believes that national regulation has been effective in creating a competent, qualified and mobile Australian health workforce.

‘I would like to congratulate Alison on her registration and all the other nurses and midwives who are busy renewing their registration right now. The process of registration makes sure that only those with the appropriate qualifications and who meet the high standards the public expects are providing safe healthcare to the Australian community. I welcome her to the nursing profession where she joins more than 390,000 nurses and midwives registered with the NMBA to practise in Australia.’

Once registered with their relevant National Board, health practitioners are able practise anywhere in Australia. Members of the public can check the registration status of Australia’s registered health workforce using the national online Register of practitioners, with details of registered practitioners updated several times each day across Australia. The national register is a great resource to help keep the public safe.

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Page reviewed 17/05/2018