Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003

If you need more information about this Act, please contact the administering agency: Ministry of Health
5 Interpretation


In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,—

Accident Compensation Corporation means the corporation of that name continued by section 259 of the Injury Prevention, Rehabilitation, and Compensation Act 2001

applicant means a person who makes an application under this Act

authority means a body corporate appointed, by or under this Act, as the body that is, in accordance with this Act, responsible for the registration and oversight of practitioners of a particular health profession

condition includes a restriction or limit

former health practitioner means a person who was, but no longer is, registered with an authority

Health and Disability Commissioner means the Health and Disability Commissioner appointed under the Health and Disability Commissioner Act 1994

health practitioner or practitioner means a person who is, or is deemed to be, registered with an authority as a practitioner of a particular health profession

health profession or profession means the practice of a profession in respect of which an authority is appointed by or under this Act

health service means a service provided for the purpose of assessing, improving, protecting, or managing the physical or mental health of individuals or groups of individuals

layperson means a person who is neither registered nor qualified to be registered as a health practitioner

medical officer of health has the same meaning as in section 2(1) of the Health Act 1956

mental or physical condition means any mental or physical condition or impairment; and includes, without limitation, a condition or impairment caused by alcohol or drug abuse

Minister means the Minister of Health

oversight means professional support and assistance provided to a health practitioner by a professional peer for the purposes of professional development

practise a profession or practise means to perform services that fall within the description of a health profession

practising certificate means an annual practising certificate issued under section 26(3) or section 29(4) or an interim practising certificate issued under section 31

prescribed qualification means a qualification for the time being prescribed under section 12 for a scope of practice

professional peer, in relation to a health practitioner, is a person who is registered with the same authority with which the health practitioner is registered

register, in relation to an authority, means the register maintained by the authority under section 136

Registrar, in relation to an authority, means the Registrar of the authority appointed under section 151

required standard of competence, in relation to a health practitioner, means the standard of competence reasonably to be expected of a health practitioner practising within that health practitioner’s scope of practice

responsible authority, in relation to—


a health profession, means the authority appointed in respect of the profession:


a health practitioner, an applicant, or a former health practitioner, means the authority responsible for the registration of practitioners of the profession that the person concerned practises or seeks to practise or has practised

scope of practice


means any health service that forms part of a health profession and that is for the time being described under section 11; and


in relation to a health practitioner of that profession, means 1 or more of such health services that the practitioner is, under an authorisation granted under section 21, permitted to perform, subject to any conditions for the time being imposed by the responsible authority

supervision means the monitoring of, and reporting on, the performance of a health practitioner by a professional peer

Tribunal means the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal established by section 84.


A reference in this Act to an authority responsible for a profession is a reference to the authority that is appointed in respect of the profession concerned.


In Parts 4 and 5, health practitioner includes a former health practitioner.

Section 5(1) medical practitioner: repealed, on 12 April 2019, by section 4 of the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Amendment Act 2019 (2019 No 11).