PA President Dr Peter Hartley, PA NSW Chapter Chair Joe Acker and Executive Officer Robyn Smith met with the NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner, Dr Mary Foley the Director General of Health for NSW and their colleagues in Sydney yesterday, 25 May. President Peter Hartley thanked the Minister for her long term demonstrated support of the paramedic profession and expressed support in the move toward protection of the paramedic title in New South Wales. However the PA delegation confirmed a clear position that only national registration of paramedics would provide the same level of public protection and support for workforce mobility as for other health professions such as medicine and nursing.
Minister Skinner believes that the current NSW complaints/conduct/competency system adequately oversees the local paramedic workforce and confirmed NSW Health is committed to maintain the vocational training pathway for paramedics, although acknowledging there is a shift towards university sector education with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. The Minister will review outcomes of the re-drafted Regulatory Impact Statement before a final decision on NSW Health’s position on National Registration. She advised that if NSW determines not to support national registration in its own jurisdiction, she would support the implementation of national registration in other jurisdictions provided there is an opt out option embedded in the legislation.