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Employers: How to verify a new Allied Health staff member before you hire them
POSTED BY FARAH RIZVI-HAMMOND
Friday, August 7, 2020
Updated August, 2022.
Are you an employer looking to hire an Allied Health professional? It’s tricky to know what checks you need to undertake to ensure you hire an appropriate candidate.
Here are some checks that we recommend you perform before sending an offer to any new candidate.
Skip these steps at your peril - it might seem like a lot of work up front, but trust us when we say it’ll be far more work to sort out once a new hire has signed on and started with you.
Check the candidate’s AHPRA registration. You may find:
- Conditions on their registration
- A suspension
- A deregistration
If everything looks good, proceed according to AHPRA’s advisory and statutory requirements.
Not all Allied Health qualifications require AHPRA registration. For example, Rehab Counsellors register with ASORC/RCAA, Exercise Physiologists register with ESSA. So many acronyms! Always check the candidate’s relevant professional body registration.
Make sure your candidate has the appropriate work permission as per their Residency Status i.e.
- an appropriate work visa
- Permanent residency
- Temporary residency
Make sure you specify any visa requirements or conditions on your job ad or you might get umpteen applications from keen candidates living overseas with the wrong visa status.
Here’s a real life example. Our client thought they had sourced the perfect person for a role on a Defence Base. They went through the recruitment process and when the person showed up to work on the Base on Day 1, they were denied entry because they were not an Australian citizen. True story!
This should go without saying but make sure that if your role requires a degree or certain level of professional development that you ask to see the original copy of each degree and course undertaken.
A potential minefield! At the very least, we suggest you Google each potential hire, but it’s also important to check out their other online profiles such as:
- TikTok and
These days, an online presence is completely normal, but it’s important to look into the way someone presents online because, depending on their role, it could be crucial to your company.
PROFESSIONAL REFERENCE CHECKS
Perform reference checks with at least two recent managers that the candidate reported to, and if they’re to be managers themselves, it can pay to talk to one of their previous direct reports too.
NOTE: Many candidates don’t share news of their job hunt with their current employers so you need to be sensitive to this when you perform reference checks.
PROBITY CHECK | WORKING WITH CHILDREN CHECK
If the role requires a police check or working with children check, make sure you sight this, or make an offer conditional on the outcome of the checks if they haven’t been done yet.
So very post-2020! Up-to-date COVID-19 vaccinations are required for nearly every job in the Allied Health sector. Luckily, Medicare has done a lot of the work for you here, so you can just ask for a candidate’s Medicare documentation to check their vax status. However, if you’re worried that a candidate’s vaccination documents are not legitimate, make sure you double check. Luckily though, if a practitioner is unvaccinated, they can’t bill through Medicare so you should find out soon enough if someone on your team isn’t legit!
A pre-employment medical check will help to establish where a new hire is currently at, both physically and mentally. It’s important to ask a candidate if they have any pre-existing injuries or illnesses.
Many companies now do psychological assessments as part of the interview process. This can be a great way to make sure candidates aren’t just telling you what you want to hear. Have you ever done one of those annoying questionnaires that seem to be asking you the same question 10 different ways? Well these specialised psychological questionnaires are actually incredibly effective at detecting inconsistencies. Consider integrating them into your hiring process.
Another thing to check is whether they’ve ever made a Workers’ compensation claim. If so, was it a physical or psych claim? Make sure you get the details. All you need to do is ask - a candidate should be honest and up front here.
If you are happy with the results of your checks, then go ahead and make an offer.
If you're an employer looking for national Allied Health staff in Australia and you’d like a hand, give us a call here at Medijobs Australia. We’re very serious about getting to know our candidates and employers to ensure they’re a great match for each other in skill, opportunity and personality.
NOTE: This article was edited and updated in July 2022 to take in changes to the Allied Health landscape.
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