Payouts planned for botched health scheme

HUNDREDS of patients could receive “act of grace” payments from the Commonwealth after the bungled National Health Registration and Accreditation Scheme left health professionals mistakenly unregistered and patients unable to claim Medicare rebates.

The measure has been put forward by state and federal health ministers, along with a promise of “additional monitoring” of the Australian Health Practitioner Regulatory Agency (AHPRA), which has been overseeing the national registration system.

“The Commonwealth will consider ex-gratia or act of grace payment for a period of time so patients are not disadvantaged by lapsed registration of their healthcare practitioner who is still practicing,” the ministers said in a statement.

The Department of Finance and Deregulation, which would oversee the measure, did not respond to queries before MO went to press. However, an AMA spokesman told MO that feedback from state