Annual Practising Certificates (APC)
You must hold a current APC to practise as a medical laboratory science or anaesthetic technician practitioner in New Zealand.
You will be granted an APC if we are satisfied that you meet the criteria set out in section 27 of the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003. Holding a current APC means you:
- are fit to practise
- have maintained the standard of competence required for your scope of practice
- have held an APC within the 3 years immediately before your application
- have lawfully practised your profession within the 3 years immediately before the application
- have complied with any conditions included on your scope of practice
- have completed the requirements of any competence programme that we, the Medical Sciences Council, may have directed you to undertake
- do not have a health condition that adversely affects your ability to practise.
It is an offence to practise without an APC. If you do so, you may be:
- prosecuted by the Ministry of Health and liable to a fine of up to $10,000, and
- liable to disciplinary proceedings before the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal and cancellation of your registration.
For new graduates from a New Zealand accredited programme, you are “deemed” to be competent if you apply for your first APC within a year of graduation.
An APC is valid for a maximum of twelve-months between 1st April to 31st March of the following year. An APC may be issued for a part of the relevant twelve-month period.
If you have applied and paid for your APC but have not received it, it could be that the Council:
- is waiting for your supervisor to confirm your competency to practice (MLT and MLPAT only)
- is waiting for the payment to go through
- needs to review your declaration.
Once your APC has been issued, it will be emailed to your nominated email address, and placed under the invoice/document tab in your profile.
Every time you renew your APC, you must complete several declarations. It is an offence to falsify any declarations, and are liable on conviction to a maximum fine of $10,000. (Section 172 of the HPCA Act 2003).
The Council collects workforce data on behalf of the Ministry of Health. When you renew your APC you will be asked to record:
- Your ethnicity. You will be able to select up to three ethnic groups.
- Details of each health care facility where you work and the hours worked. If you work at more than one facility, you will be able to record up to three facilities.
Your demographic data collected is anonymised when provided to the Ministry of Health.