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The AAPA Order 2024 has been approved by the House of Lords, paving the way for official regulation of physician associates (PAs) and anaesthesia associates (AAs). This is a huge milestone for the PA profession. PAs across the country seem thrilled to see regulation come to fruition.

So, what does this mean for you?

The General Medical Council (GMC) is now taking the lead, and they’ll be figuring out the specifics of how regulation will work in practice. This includes things like the registration process and how they’ll introduce the new register.

If you’re already a qualified PA, you’ll be invited to apply through a streamlined process provided you’re on the FPA Managed Voluntary Register (MVR). If you’re not already on the MVR, it might be worth looking to join soon.

The GMC has made it clear that until regulation starts, you should continue to follow the requirements of your employer and follow guidance issued by the FPA. Over the next few months, the FPA will provide supportive advice and guidance on becoming a regulated healthcare professional, alongside other supportive guidance documents that are expected soon.

In the meantime, there are a few things you can do to prepare:

You can find out more about the Good Medical Practice updates with our feature article here.

The FPA will be working closely with the GMC and other stakeholders to keep us all updated as we navigate this transition to becoming a regulated healthcare profession. It is worth considering the need to budget for GMC fees that will come in with registration, which are expected to be about half the cost of what Doctors pay to register for the GMC.

Remember, until regulation starts, keep following your employer’s requirements and the FPA’s guidance. It is also worth noting that the GMC has warned Doctors, and by extension soon PAs, can be held responsible for the contents of private WhatsApp and social media messages.

This is a big step forward for the PA profession, and we’re excited to see what the future holds!

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