Types of nurse prescriber
Nurses, Midwives, Pharmacists and other allied healthcare professionals (AHPs) who have completed an accredited prescribing course and registered their qualification with their regulatory body, are able to prescribe.
The two main types are:
- Community Practitioner Nurse Prescribers (CPNP)
These are nurses who have successfully completed a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Community Practitioner Nurse Prescribing course (also known as a v100 or v150 course) and are registered as a CPNP with the NMC. The majority of nurses who have done this course are district nurses and public health nurses (previously known as health visitors), community nurses and school nurses. They are qualified to prescribe only from the Nurse Prescribers Formulary (NPF) for Community Practitioners. This formulary contains appliances, dressings, pharmacy (P), general sales list (GSL) and thirteen prescription only medicines (POMs).
- Independent Prescribers (IP)
Independent prescribers are nurses who have successfully completed an NMC Independent Nurse Prescribing Course (also known as a v200 or v300 course) and are registered with the NMC as an IP. They are able to prescribe any medicine provided it is in their competency to do so. This includes medicines and products listed in the BNF, unlicensed medicines and all controlled drugs in schedules two - five.
Those who have successfully completed the supplementary part of the prescribing course are also able to prescribe against a clinical management plan. Supplementary prescribing is described by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) as:
"a voluntary partnership between an Independent Prescriber (IP-er) and a supplementary prescriber (SP-er)," (e.g. nurse, pharmacist) "to implement an agreed patient-specific clinical management plan (CMP) with the patient's agreement."
The RCN acknowledges that some nurse prescribers are registered midwives.