Objective: The aim of the present study was to investigate how midwives are responding to the changed re-registration requirements; specifically the Recency of Practice (RoP) Standard.
Methods: A qualitative longitudinal case study used conversational interviews conducted annually at two time phases after the introduction of national registration.
Results: Findings reveal that confusion has created challenges in demonstration of the RoP standard. This confusion was evident at individual and organisational levels.
Conclusions: Professional bodies need to support staff in this transition by providing clearer guidance that exemplifies the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia expectations.
What is known about the topic?: Impact subsequent to Australian legislative and regulatory changes affecting midwifery and nursing registration has not been examined.
What does this paper add?: The findings of this study provide an insight into midwives' responses to the changed re-registration standard in Australia.
What are the implications for practitioners? There appears to be a problem in the way tensions and challenges are being met; misinterpretation of the requirements has generated questions about the relationship between skills and work areas and demonstration of RoP. This may influence individual career planning and have broader workforce planning implications.