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Important reminder: Muscle biopsies may only be performed by a health practitioner

Performing a muscle biopsy is considered to be a ‘Restricted Procedure’ under the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003 and the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance (Restricted Activities) Order 2005.

This means that muscle biopsies can only be performed by health practitioner who is registered with the appropriate authority under the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003, and is permitted by his or her scope of practice to perform a muscle biopsy.

The Ministry will update its guidance on restricted procedures and its guidance for ethics committees, to clarify that muscle biopsies are a ‘restricted activity.’ (See Ministry of Health website: Restricted activities under the Act).

A breach of this provision is punishable by a fine of up to $30,000 (see section 9 of the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003).