Impact of CPD
How Does CPD Impact on the Practice of Health Practitioners?
CPD ensures that health practitioners are constantly and consistently improving their professional practice. Without the regulation of health practitioners, many negative outcomes would arise, the main being malpractice due to lack of knowledge on new practice techniques, new technologies and more.
The argument can be made that with new practice techniques and technology that the sector will naturally develop awareness and understanding of these innovations. However, without a sense of urgency or requirement, it naturally decreases motivation towards actively acquiring these new skills.
To see the impact of CPD on health practitioners we should refer to the table below, here we see the total number of registered practicing health practitioners relative to their board and minimum CPD requirements per registration period. The total CPD hours for all registration boards combined equates to 19,524,170 hours of CPD completed within one registration period. To make this figure easier to understand, this roughly equates to 2.5 years worth of learning with the intended outcomes of improved patient care within one year.
|Professional Board||No. Registered Practicing Practitioners||Min. CPD Hours Required||Total Hours of CPD (per year)|
|Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia||403,532||20 hours||8,070,640 hours|
|Chiropractic Board of Australia||5,226||25 hours||130,650 hours|
|Dental Board of Australia||23,205||60 hours (3 years)||464,100 hours (1 year)|
|Medical Board of Australia||116,958||50 hours||5,847,900 hours|
|Optometry Board of Australia||5,710||80 hours (2 years)||228,400 hours (1 year)|
|Osteopathy Board of Australia||2,546||25 hours||63,650 hours|
|Pharmacy Board of Australia||30,890||40 credits/hours||1,235,600 hours|
|Physiotherapy Board of Australia||32,694||20 hours||653,880 hours|
|Podiatry Board of Australia||5,251||20 hours||105,020 hours|
|Psychology Board of Australia||36,346||30 hours||1,090,380 hours|
|Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners||708||Min 10 hours per year, 60 hours over 3 years. Average = 20 hours||1,4160 hours|
|Chinese Medicine Board of Australia||4,618||20 hours||92,360 hours|
|Medical Radiation Practice Board of Australia||16,490||60 hours (3 years)||329,800 hours (1 year)|
|Occupational Therapy Board of Australia||21,965||30 hours||658,950 hours|
|Paramedicines Board of Australia||17,956||30 hours||538,680 hours|
How Does CPD Impact on the Patients?
CPD positively impacts patients through upholding professional standards and continuous improvement in the way health practitioners undertake their practice. It is evident through the sheer number of CPD hours accumulated by the healthcare sector that it will only improve patient care.
This is not to say that there are not areas to improve in terms of CPD. All health practitioners should aim to get the most out of their CPD for their own, and for their patients’ betterment.
Tips to Get the Most Out of Your CPD!
Diversity of education
You can acquire CPD from a wide range of sources and activities, many of which are free. Be sure to diversify your CPD Portfolio whilst upholding your requirements.
Source CPD from credible providers
Try to ensure the CPD you’re receiving comes from credible providers. Ways you can determine if a provider is credible is:
- The provider cites sources of information
- The information the provider cites is relevant and up-to-date
- The provider is aware of your CPD requirements
- The provider is supported by relevant boards or professional associations
Spread out your CPD
Don’t leave your CPD to the last minute. It’s best to spread out your CPD activities across the entire registration period to remove stress come registration renewal and ensure you effectively absorb the information you learn.
Document your CPD ASAP
Similar to the point above, it’s best to document and evaluate your CPD as soon after you complete it as possible. This ensures your reflection is accurate as the information is top-of-mind and allows for a deeper critical analysis of the outcome.
Use an online CPD Portfolio
An online Portfolio will make it easy to uphold your CPD requirements by having a record of your CPD activities for every registration year. Some Portfolios allow you to record written reflections and relate your learning to your context of practice and even your registration standards. The Ausmed App is the perfect tool to help with this.