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International regulation

Eureka and Christine

In last summer’s newsletter we heard from Eureka Cheung, Hong Kong’s Principal Assistant Secretary for Health in the Food and Health Bureau. While on her sabbatical studying public policy at Oxford University, Eureka was seconded to the Authority, researching the feasibility of setting up an accredited registers scheme in Hong Kong for healthcare professions currently not subject to statutory regulation. The Hong Kong government has just announced that they will go ahead with a pilot programme.

Five healthcare professions have been assessed to meet the criteria for accreditation as part of the pilot. These professions are:

  • speech therapists
  • clinical psychologists
  • educational psychologists
  • audiologists
  • dieticians.

The Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (JCSPHPC) has been appointed as the independent Accreditation Agent of the Pilot Scheme.  A total of 20 applications from 15 healthcare professions were received. After examining the submissions, the accreditation team at the JCSPHPC considered that these five professions met the criteria for accreditation under the Pilot Scheme.
The accreditation standards cover governance, operational effectiveness, risk management and quality improvement, standards for registrants, educational and training requirements, and management of the register of the professional body.
The Pilot Scheme will operate under the principle of 'one profession, one professional body, one register'.

Accredited professional bodies will be permitted by the Department of Health to use an Accreditation Mark on their websites and Certificates of Registration issued to their members for easy identification by the public. Members of the accredited professional bodies can also use a specified title on their name cards. Members of the public can look up the registers of healthcare professionals through the accredited bodies.