The principal purpose of this Act is to protect the health and safety of members of the public by providing for mechanisms to ensure that health practitioners are competent and fit to practise their professions.
The mechanisms to support the purposes are:
- Scopes of practice describe and define the boundaries of each profession.
- To ensure professional competence has to be proven in order to register as a health practitioner.
- Evidence of continuing professional competence is required when a health practitioner applies for an annual practising certificate in order to be able to continue to practise.
- A Regulatory Authority can suspend a practitioner's Annual Practising Certificate, impose conditions on a scope of practice or alter a practitioner's scope of practice.
The Act requires all psychotherapists register with the Psychotherapists Board of Aotearoa New Zealand. If a psychotherapist is not registered with the Board and does not hold a current APC then they cannot practise psychotherapy in New Zealand.