Aim: A theoretical discussion using categorisation theory to discuss the final analysis of findings from research which investigated midwives’ responses to the changed registration-renewal requirements in Australia after the introduction of national registration.
Background: In 2010 the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law Act introduced national registration to standardise the regulation of health professionals in Australia. Annual registration-renewal standards required all health professionals to meet the same standards of clear police check, insurance for scope of practice, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and Recency of Practice (ROP).
Question: How did dual registered midwives respond to the changed registration-renewal requirements when national registration was introduced?
Methods: A longitudinal single case study was conducted in two phases between 2011–2013 with a purposive sample of 24 midwives from five states of Australia to perform individual or group interviews.
Findings: Participants used inclusion and exclusion criteria to create boundaries around practice to illustrate how they met the registration-renewal standards. Accentuation (exaggeration) of practice helped them define their separate professional registrations. Boundaries included the type of person being cared for, practice activities. and place of practice.
Conclusion: The theory of categorisation helped explain the dual registrants’ behaviour and rationalise their midwifery responses.