Medical Board Suspends License of Aaron Groves, Chief Psychiatrist of Tasmania

October 7, 2022

The Australia Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) — the nation's medical regulator — has suspended the license of Tasmania's chief psychiatrist, leaving him unable to practice.

AHPRA told the ABC that Aaron Groves' registration was suspended by the Medical Board of Australia on Monday. It said it could not comment further due to privacy reasons.

The state's Health Department has also declined to comment.

In a statement, Dr. Groves' law firm Willon Legal said he had "exercised his right to appeal" the medical board's decision by "issuing legal proceedings for review."

"The Medical Board has separately referred the matter for investigation," the statement said. "No further comment will be made in relation to the matter at this time."

Health and Community Services Union assistant secretary Lucas Digney said mental health workers wanted certainty about who was going to lead them.

"Given the crisis in a number of mental health areas at the moment having a void in the leadership is certainly problematic," he said.

"For our members and the broader community what is important is who is going to lead statewide mental health services in the medium to longer term."

Groves formerly held role in WA, Qld and SA

Dr. Groves moved to Tasmania in November 2017, after holding the role of chief psychiatrist in Western Australia, Queensland, and South Australia.

His five-year term is set to expire on November 23.

In announcing Dr. Groves' appointment, then-health minister Michael Ferguson said he would have the power "to intervene directly in the assessment, treatment and care of patients" and was committed to "shaping mental health policy and clinical practice in Tasmania."

He also said Dr. Groves would help to implement "a truly integrated mental health system that provides

support in the right place, at the right time and with clear signposts about where and how to get help."

Dr. Groves was the 2021 recipient of the Royal Australian New Zealand College of Psychiatrists' (RANZCP) Margaret Tobin Award, given to a fellow who had made the most significant contribution to administrative psychiatry during the past five years.

In recent months, Anthony Cidoni has been acting as the state's chief civil and forensic psychiatrist.

Source: Adam Langenberg, “Regulator suspends license of Tasmania's chief psychiatrist, Aaron Groves,” ABC News, Oct. 6, 2022, URL:  


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