Mandatory reporting of health professionals: the case for a Western Australian style exemption for all Australian practitioners

J Law Med. 2014 Sep;22(1):209-20.


This article discusses the current mandatory reporting obligations for health practitioners in Australia under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law. It provides a summary of the mandatory notification legislation, and contextualises the introduction of this law. The details of the Western Australian exemption, under which a treating doctor is exempt from mandatory reporting of a doctor-patient, and the rationale for its introduction are examined. This is followed by a consideration of the potential impact of the mandatory reporting obligations. The authors argue that the Western Australian exemption has merit and should be considered for adoption throughout Australia.

MeSH terms

  • Australia
  • Humans
  • Mandatory Reporting*
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care
  • Physician Impairment / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Physicians / legislation & jurisprudence*