Complementary health practitioners disciplined for misconduct in Australia 2010-2016

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Law and Medicine, 2017, 24 (4), pp. 788 - 802
Issue Date:
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© 2017 Thomson Head Office. This article examines disciplinary proceedings brought against complementary medicine (CM) practitioners in Australia at tribunal level since the inception of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law. The article looks at all 32 such cases and identifies trends in the kinds of misconduct established, and the orders imposed.These findings are compared with earlier and more sizable studies of tribunal-level outcomes for disciplinary proceedings against doctors in Australia and New Zealand. While there are some clear comparisons - such as the gender ratio of respondent practitioners and the most common type of misconduct, ie sexual misconduct - there were also notable differences. Specifically, the rate of removal from practice, either by suspension or cancellation of registration, of CM practitioners was found to be significantly higher than that reported in earlier studies of cases against doctors. More research needs to be done to explore the reasons for this apparent disparity.
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