Joint Statement by Health Professions Council of Zambia and Higher Education Authority on Health-Related Training Programmes

Figure 1 HEA Director-General, Professor Stephen Simukanga (L), and HPCZ Chief Executive Officer and Registrar, Mr. Bwembya Bwalya, pose for a photo in the HPCZ Boardroom.

LUSAKA, 26th November, 2021 – Following the Amendment of the Higher Education Act No. 4 of 2013 by the Higher Education (Amendment) Act No. 23 of 2021, it has become necessary to harmonise the execution of the mandates of both the Higher Education Authority (HEA) and the Health Professions Council of Zambia (HPCZ) regarding the regulation of health-related training programmes in the country.

To this effect, Higher Education Institutions offering health-related programmes, stakeholders, parents, guardians, sponsors, students and the general public are hereby formally notified that the core function of recognising and approving health-related training programmes will no longer be the preserve of HPCZ but that of HEA.

Therefore, with immediate effect, all quality assurance matters relating to health-related training programmes, which had been under HPCZ, shall be handled by HEA.

However, HPCZ retains the core functions of registering of health practitioners and regulating their professional conduct, licensing of health facilities and accrediting of healthcare services, and approving of health-related training curriculum as a quality assurance mechanism as stipulated in the Health Professions Act No. 24 of 2009 of the Laws of Zambia.

Further, HPCZ will continue to approve the training curriculum of health-related programmes. The Higher Education (Amendment) Act in Part IVA Section 23 states that despite any other written law, the Authority shall, in consultation with relevant professional institutions, accredit learning programmes offered in a higher education institution, and, further in 23D (b), the Amendment Act states that the Authority shall accredit a learning programme of a higher education institution if the curriculum as approved by the professional institution is clearly defined and responds to the demands of the labour market.

Further, the two regulators shall continue with sustained and regular consultations and collaboration ensure that the training of health practitioners in the country is not compromised and that public health safety is ultimately guaranteed.

Signed and issued by

Mr. Bwembya Bwalya
Chief Executive Officer/Registrar
Health Professions Council of Zambia
Prof.  Stephen Simukanga 
Higher Education Authority

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