AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency) has announced regulatory changes to fast-track international practitioners, notably the abolition of in-person ID checks.


From 18 December 2023, the requirement for in-person identity checks in Australia has been eliminated, signaling a shift towards more streamlined and efficient registration processes for international healthcare practitioners.


This means for doctors trained overseas (including New Zealand), their registration can be automatically finalised without the need for a return trip to Australia.  Applications for Medicare provider numbers can now be submitted immediately under the new system as previously, this couldn’t commence until after the ID check.


Reforms of the registration process have cut the assessment times from 29 days down to just 10 days.


In medicine, Ahpra and the Medical Board of Australia are working closely with specialist medical colleges including RANZCR, RANZCP & ACEM to improve the experience of overseas-trained doctors seeking registration in Australia.


Ahpra have established a team to lead and support the improvement process for radiologists, psychiatrists, and emergency medicine doctors working in Australia.


This work is focused on:


  • Enhancing the clarity of registration prerequisites to enable international medical graduates to ascertain beforehand whether they meet Australia’s stipulated standards
  • Examining every IMG registration route to discover chances for eliminating redundancy, simplifying procedures, shortening timelines, and enhancing accessibility and usability.
  • Assessing all pathways for IMG registration to pinpoint areas for eliminating duplication, streamlining processes, shortening timelines, and enhancing accessibility and user-friendliness.
  • Reviewing their regulatory standards to ensure they are transparent, equitable, and based on public safety principles
  • Reducing bureaucratic hurdles by eliminating repetitive procedures.
  • Examining existing standards, such as English proficiency and regency of practice prerequisites.


There is no change to the requirement to obtain a domestic and international criminal history check before registration is granted.


For more information on Ahpra’s statement, click here.


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