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CDS Prescribing for NPs: update

Revised nursing Regulation and PharmaNet access

Posted Jan. 8, 2016

We are getting closer to the day when nurse practitioners (NPs) can write prescriptions for controlled drugs and substances (CDS). There have been two important developments in the past month:

  1. Revised Nursing Regulation: On Dec. 3, 2015 government announced the revised Nurses (Registered) and Nurse Practitioner Regulation has been enacted. This means the legal authority now exists for NPs to prescribe Schedule IA medications.
  2. PharmaNet access: On Jan. 5, 2016 the Ministry of Health announced it is opening enrolment of NPs for access to PharmaNet. NPs who currently access PharmaNet from within Health Authority systems will be able to request medication dispensing histories in PharmaNet directly. NPs practising in the community will be able to request access under the Community Practice Access to PharmaNet service. 

    Visit the PharmaNet section of the Ministry website for information.

Next steps

It's very important to note that NPs do not yet have the authority to prescribe Controlled Drugs and Substances. There are still a few hurdles to clear before CDS prescribing is granted to NPs by CRNBC:

  • Controlled Prescription Program: we are working with our partners to establish this for NPs
  • CRNBC Board sets effective date for the revised Scope of Practice for Nurse Practitioners: Standards, Limits and Conditions.

The College continues to work towards a spring deadline for completion of this project.

Visit the CDS Prescribing section of the website for information about educational requirements, and much more.

Please email if you have questions.

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