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Nurse Practitioners, Midwives empowered to provide quality care

Nurse Practitioners, Midwives empowered to provide quality care

The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) has commended the Albanese Government for introducing new laws which will give highly-trained nurse practitioners (NPs) and midwives greater capacity to provide people with safe, quality care – without the need to visit a GP or a hospital emergency department (ED).

This morning, Assistant Minister for Health and Aged Care Ged Kearney will introduce the Health Legislation Amendment (Removal of Requirement for a Collaborative Arrangement) Bill which will remove barriers that have prevented NPs and endorsed midwives from prescribing medicines under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and providing services under Medicare.

ANMF Federal Secretary Annie Butler said today: “For too long, NPs and midwives have been prevented from working to their full scope of practice because of the requirement for a
‘collaborative arrangement’ with a medical practitioner. “This out-dated requirement has needlessly constrained services and prevented people from accessing quality health care when they need it and where they need it. This has been particularly acute in rural and regional, and other underserved communities, where it’s become harder and harder to see a doctor.

“Removing these unnecessary restrictions, which are completely out of step with international best practice, will allow highly-trained NPs and endorsed midwives to utilise their full-set of skills and experience and provide best quality care in the community for people when and where they need it.

“With increased demands for healthcare and with chronic workforce shortages across the country, the ANMF and our members believe this is a common-sense solution and we commend the Assistant Minister for Health and Aged Care for introducing this important Bill into the Parliament today to deliver the best health outcomes for the community.”

Ms Butler pointed to the success of nurse-led clinics in Tasmania and the ACT in providing people with treatment and preventative healthcare and the Queensland Government’s recent announcement of four new nurse-led healthcare clinics across Queensland.