Medical Board of Australia - Board publishes record number of consultation submissions
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Board publishes record number of consultation submissions

01 Sep 2020

The Medical Board of Australia (the Board) has published a record number of submissions made to the public consultation on proposed options to more clearly regulate medical practitioners who provide complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments.

The submissions reflect the diversity of passionately held views in the profession and the community about these areas of practice. Concerns about the consultation process itself were also raised and are published.

Some submissions are not published, for example when the sender did not consent to publication, or when the submission was out of scope. The Board reviews all submissions within the scope of the consultation.

To manage the unprecedented volume being published - nearly 10,000 of 13,500 received – submissions have been clustered for the purposes of publication into three broad groups:

  • submissions from organisations (57 submissions)
  • submissions from individuals (~1,100 submissions)
  • submissions received via third party websites (~ 8,500 submissions).

The Board has also published a consultation submission report, to help readers navigate the diverse spread of views and perspectives raised in the consultation.

The report outlines the consultation process and provides information about the submissions received and published. It does not include thematic analysis of the feedback.

The consultation, open for six months in 2019, sparked extensive debate in the community and the profession and triggered unprecedented interest in the work of the Board.

The consultation sought feedback from stakeholders about whether additional safeguards were needed for patients receiving care from medical practitioners who provide complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments.

It looked at options to best protect patients and minimise the risk of harm to them, without stifling innovation, making a judgement about specific clinical practices or limiting patients’ right to choose their healthcare.

‘We are taking our time to consider the many thoughtful views and suggestions made in the consultation,’ said Dr Anne Tonkin, Chair of the Medical Board of Australia.

‘We are keeping an open mind as we work towards a sensible, safe and effective regulatory response,’ Dr Tonkin said.

The Board has not set a timeline to settle and publish its final position, but this work is a priority.

The submissions are available on the Board’s website under Past consultations.

For more information

Page reviewed 1/09/2020