The Australian Government has appointed Ms Robyn Kruk AO to lead an independent review (the Review) of the regulatory settings relating to health practitioner registration and qualification recognition for overseas trained health professionals and international students who have studied in Australia.
The Review, announced by National Cabinet on 30 September 2022, will deliver recommendations designed to ease skills shortages in key health professions. These include nursing and midwifery, medicine, psychology, pharmacy, para-medicine and occupational therapy.
Ms Kruk brings a wealth of relevant senior executive experience in the health and social care sectors to the Review. She has led state and Australian Government agencies, including as Secretary of New South Wales Health, and was the inaugural CEO of the National Mental Health Commission. Ms Kruk has led other independent reviews, such as the 2019 Western Australian Government Sustainable Health Review and the 2021 Taskforce into Public Mental Health Services for Children and Adolescents. In 2021, she led the Second Year Review of the National Redress Scheme and in 2022, the New South Wales Health COVID-19 System Response Debrief.
The Review will complement activities to be undertaken by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (Ahpra). The Review also links to outcomes from the Jobs and Skills Summit in September, including the comprehensive review of Australia’s migration system announced by the Hon Clare O’Neil MP, the Minister for Home Affairs.
The Review will consult widely with relevant stakeholders to ensure the recommendations are practical and help deliver the health workforce Australia needs to provide high-quality and timely health services for the community.
The Department of Finance and the Department of Health and Aged Care will jointly provide support for the Review.
Quotes attributable to Senator the Hon Katy Gallagher, Australian Government Minister for Finance:
“The Review will help employers get the health practitioners they need and reduce compliance costs on employers and skilled migrants.”
Quotes attributable to the Hon Mark Butler MP, Australian Government Minister for Health and Aged Care:
“The Review will help increase the health workforce, reducing pressure on the health and hospital system. The Review will not reduce the quality and safety of care for patients.”