Nurse independent prescribing: exploring the opportunities and challenges
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Nurse independent prescribing: exploring the opportunities and challenges

Sonya MacVicar Associate professor, School of Health and Social Care, Edinburgh Napier University, Edinburgh, Scotland

Why you should read this article:
  • To be aware of the latest developments in non-medical prescribing, including nurse prescribing

  • To identify the benefits and barriers to increasing the number of nurse independent prescribers

  • To consider the potential role for nurse independent prescribers in the mentoring and development of future nurse prescribers

The Nursing and Midwifery Council states that nurses should be able to demonstrate competence in prescribing practice at the point of registration to be ‘prescribing ready’. The aim is to increase the number of nurse independent prescribers and improve access to pharmacological treatments for patients. However, while this policy presents opportunities for nurses to develop their prescribing knowledge and skills, there are also challenges involved in integrating prescribing theory into nurse education and ensuring there are enough suitable mentors available in practice. This article details how the policy of prescribing readiness is being addressed in preregistration nurse education and explores the supervision of nurse prescribing in clinical practice. The author also discusses how best to support the professional development of nurse independent prescribers beyond their initial training.

Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2024.e12304

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software



Conflict of interest

None declared

MacVicar S (2024) Nurse independent prescribing: exploring the opportunities and challenges. Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2024.e12304

Published online: 13 May 2024

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