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									The Health Practitioner Competence Assurance Act 2003 Implications for the Occupational Therapy Board of NZ and Occupational Therapists

What is the Occupational Therapy Board of NZ?
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The Board is a legislated authority
Legislation: Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003 (HPCAA) Purpose: To protect the health and safety of members of the public by providing mechanisms to ensure that occupational therapists are competent and fit to practise their profession Please note that the OT Board and NZAOT are two separate organisations with very different functions.

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Why must I register as an Occupational Therapist?
Law • You must be registered in order to practise as an OT • You must hold a current practising certificate in order to practise

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You must practise within your scope of practice
You must practise in accordance with any conditions on your practising certificate You must practise in accordance with the Board’s Code of Ethics for Occupational Therapists

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Functions of the Occupational Therapy Board of NZ
Functions prescribed under section 118 of the HPCAA • Prescribe scopes of practice • Prescribe qualifications and monitor institutions, courses and programmes • Register occupational therapists • Maintain public register of occupational therapists • Review and promote the competence of occupational therapists • Ensure standards of competence and issue practising certificates • Receive and act on complaints • Set standards of cultural and clinical competence • Set standards of ethical conduct • Promote public awareness of our responsibilities • Promote education and training in the profession • Plus all powers, duties and functions required to implement the HPCAA and other relevant legislation

New Registration Requirements under HPCAA
The Board must be satisfied that registered practitioners meet the criteria for:

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Fitness for registration requirements (section 16)

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Prescribed qualifications (section 12)
Competence to practise in specified scope of practice

Fitness to Practise
Applicants must satisfy the Board that they meet the criteria for: • • • • • • • • Communication English language ability Convictions Mental and physical fitness Professional disciplinary status Not under investigation Not subject to orders of a disciplinary tribunal Not likely to endanger the safety of the public

Qualifications
New Zealand The person must hold a minimum of a bachelors degree from an accredited educational institution: • Bachelor of Occupational Therapy from Otago Polytechnic; or • Bachelor of Health Science (Occupational Therapy) from AUT If you are already registered with other qualifications, you are deemed registered under HPCAA Overseas Qualified: The Board assesses comparability of qualifications and experience, and may require that applicants sit the Board’s Registration Competence Examination.

Changes Under HPCAA
• • • • • • • • • • Defining scopes of practice for the profession Ensuring competence to practise in the scope of practice Review and promote competence of OTs Peers and other professionals able to notify concerns HDC required to notify concerns Employers must notify in some circumstances Notification must be in writing Emphasis must be on public safety Act in good faith, no civil or disciplinary proceedings Establishment of independent Disciplinary Tribunal for all Health Professions

Recertification
• • Renewal of your practising certificate is NOT automatic You must satisfy the Board that you are competent in your scope of practice You must participate in the Board’s Continued Competence Framework You must comply with any conditions on your practising certificate You must be prepared to be audited at least once every five years

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Practising Certificate: Recertification Process
• Ongoing process of working in accordance with the continued competence framework for recertification Receive invoice with three options: 1. Apply for a current practising certificate 2. Request to remain on the Register as a nonpractising OT 3. Request that your name be removed from the Register

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Applying for a Practising Certificate
• • The Board is developing a completely electronic process However, 2005/06 will still require a signed form

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Application fee: $400
No bulk payments will be accepted from employers Practising certificates will be plastic cards with ID photos

What OTs need to do
Before the practising certificate applications are sent out you will be required to: • Log-on to the website and enter all your personal details and information required by the Board to operate under HPCAA Ensure you have entered your self assessment plan and objectives and arranged for supervisors If the required information has not been provided, your application for a new practising certificate will NOT BE ABLE TO BE PROCESSED. If you have absolutely NO ACCESS to the web, please contact the Board

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Non Practising OTs
• You may now choose to remain on the register as a nonpractising OT The fee for maintaining your registration as non-practising is $80 per annum You will continue to have access to your log-on site on the website to record your CCF activities and employment details You will receive Board newsletters and update emails Your name will appear on the public Register You may apply for a practising certificate at any time

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Requesting removal of your name from the Register
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Your name will no longer appear on the public Register
You may reapply for registration at any time. The application fee will be the same as that of a new graduate Your application will be individually assessed for return to practice competence requirements. You will apply for a current practising certificate in the usual way.

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Competence Assessments
• • • Are NOT Competence Reviews Carried out by Board appointed assessors There will be an application form and fee for a competence assessment for a scope of practice: $120

Competence Reviews
Indicators • • Written notification of concerns Recertification audit reveals competence concerns

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HDC refers a practitioner to the Board

Competence Review Process
• • • • • • • • • • • Therapist notified and given opportunity to respond Board consideration and determination of best process (competence/impairment/discipline) Appoints Competence Review panel Therapist agrees to panel Appoints Impairment panel (if relevant) Therapist agrees to panel Panel works with therapist to identify concerns Panel recommends action to Board, therapist makes submissions Board considers recommendations and determines risk of harm. Invites response from therapist Board determines action and notifies where relevant Follow-up audit to satisfy the Board that concerns have been addressed

Competence Programmes

Determined on a case-by-case basis for addressing competence needs in various circumstances The cost of competence programmes must be met by the therapist and/or his or her employer.

Professional Responsibilities of a Registered OT
• Commitment to principles and practise of continued competence Commitment to practise in accordance with the Code of Ethics Commitment to upholding the standards and reputation of the profession Ensure your practising certificate is current Ensure the Board is informed of any personal contact detail changes

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You must notify the Board if you have a criminal conviction recorded against your name

Professional Responsibilities cont.
• You must notify the Board if you have reason to believe that another health professional is unable to practise safely because of a mental or physical condition
You may notify the Board if you are aware that another health professional’s practice may pose a risk of harm An employer must notify the Board if an OT resigns or is dismissed where there are, or have been, concerns about competence

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When to notify the Board
• One serious event, significant departure from accepted standards Pattern of conduct over a period of time Criminal offending Professional isolation with declining standards Recognised poor performance where local intervention has failed

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Risk of Harm
In deciding whether the therapist’s practice may pose a risk of harm to the public the Board will consider:
1. The indicator that brought the therapist to the Board’s attention

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Whether the Board has adequate information to conclude that there are reasonable grounds for its belief
The context and circumstances of the therapist and his or her practice

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Notification requirements
• Under HPCAA the Board must report to: (1) The ACC (2) the DG of Health (3) the Commissioner (4) the therapist’s employer or associate if there is reason to believe that the therapists’ practice may pose a risk of harm to the public Must be written notice setting out circumstances giving rise to the belief

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Going Overseas?
• • • Maintain your registration without a practising certificate Update your contact details on the website Continue to update your continued competence plan and record on the website and keep your files up to date

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Continue to update your employment record on the website
Request work references from each employer Contact the Board to apply for a new practising certificate when you return to NZ

OT BOARD Contact Details

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www.otboard.org.nz enquiries@otboard.org.nz Telephone: (04) 474 0708/9 PO Box 10-202

Wellington


								
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