In order to practise as a physiotherapist in
Australia, you are required by the national
law to be registered with the Physiotherapy
Board of Australia (the Board). The
Australian Health Practitioner Regulation
Agency (AHPRA) supports the Board to help
you register quickly and easily.
As a regulator, the Board sets minimum
requirements through its standards, codes,
guidelines and policies for physiotherapy
practice, maintains an online registerof
practitioners and holds to account
physiotherapists who fail to meet its
The Health Practitioner National Law, as in
force in each state and territory, requires
the Board to ensure, among other things,
that practising physiotherapists have the
appropriate level of recent practice to be
able to provide care to patients. Meeting
your recency of practice obligations means
Why recency of practice matters
The Physiotherapy Board of Australia explains why demonstrating recent practice is important.
you are able to practise competently and
safely, while protecting patients and making
sure they receive high-quality care.
The minimum requirements for recent
practice are made clear in the Board’s
recency of practice registration standard,
which has been updated in the last year
and took effect from 1 December 2016.
This standard applies to all registered
physiotherapists except those with non-
practising registration. You will need to meet
the obligations of the revised standard by
the time you renew your registration in 2017.
What’s changed? The key change to the
Board’s recency of practice requirements is
minimum hours of practice
What is recent practice?
To meet the standard, you must practise for
a minimum total of 450 hours in the previous
three years (approximately three months
full time), or 150 hours in the previous 12
months (approximately one month full-time).
Most practitioners who are currently
practising will meet the revised standard.
However, this change may affect those
physiotherapists who are currently
practising infrequently, or who have had
a recent absence from practice, or are
currently taking a break from practice
and wish to return to practice.
You are encouraged to review the new
registration standard to check whether you
will be affected by the changes.
If you cannot meet the minimum hours of
practice in the revised standard, this will not
necessarily prevent you from returning to
practice as a physiotherapist.
The standard sets out the options for
physiotherapists who don’t meet the
Examples to help you understand recency of practice.