You are viewing an archive version of the PSNC website taken on 18th April 2013. This site is not updated, and may be out of date or relate to old NHS structures.
For updated and current information, please visit our new website at www.psnc.org.uk
Skip Navigation
PSNC Home Page
Advanced Search
.

Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee

Prescribing Rights

A wide range of health professionals can now prescribe NHS prescriptions. A summary of their prescribing rights can be found below.

Doctors

A doctor can issue an NHS prescription for any licensed or unlicensed medicine, food, drug, toiletry or cosmetic except ‘blacklisted’ products (Part XVIIIA of the Drug Tariff). They are permitted to prescribe items in the ‘Selected List’ (Part XVIIIB of the Drug Tariff) only in accordance with the Drug Tariff. Doctors can also prescribe any appliance or chemical reagent that is listed in Part IX of the Drug Tariff.

 

 


Dentists

Only items listed in the Dental Prescribing Formulary (Part XVIIA of the Drug Tariff) can be prescribed on Form FP10(D). Although the Dental Formulary displays products by their generic titles and dentists are strongly encouraged to prescribe generically, a product may be ordered on Form FP10(D) by its brand name providing that the brand is not listed in Part XVIIIA of the Drug Tariff (the blacklist).

Dentists working in secondary care issuing FP10 Prescriptions are not restricted to the Dental Prescribing Formulary. They are able to prescribe any drug or medical device that would normally be allowed on an FP10 Prescription.

 


Optometrists

Optometrist independent prescribers can prescribe any licensed medicine for ocular conditions affecting the eye and surrounding tissue, but are not authorised to prescribe any Controlled Drugs.

Like other NHS Prescribers, they may not prescribe any medicine which appears in Part XVIIIA of the Drug Tariff (the blacklist).   

 

 


Nurse Prescribing

There are three types of nurse prescribers, Community Practitioner Nurse Prescribers (formerly known as District Nurse/Health Visitor prescribers), Independent Prescribers and Supplementary Prescribers. All nurse prescribers can prescribe any appliances or chemical reagents listed in Part IX of the Drug Tariff but the medicines that they can prescribe differ according to their level of training and qualifications.

Community Practitioner Nurse Prescribers

Community Practitioner Nurse Prescribers are only entitled to prescribe from the Nurse Prescribers' Formulary for Community Practitioners (Part XVIIB(i) of the Drug Tariff) which includes a number of medicinal products and all appliances listed in Part IX of the Drug Tariff. The formulary is annotated with a number of restrictions linked to particular products, for example, Paracetamol Tablets BP can only be prescribed in quantities up to 100. Although it is recommended that nurses prescribe generically where appropriate, nurses can prescribe products by their generic name or the proprietary equivalent (providing that the equivalent is not listed in Part XVIIIA of the Drug Tariff, the blacklist).

Nurse Independent Prescribers

On the 1st May 2006, the regulations changed and the Extended Nurse Prescribers Formulary ceased to exist. All nurses who previously qualified as extended formulary nurse prescribers automatically became nurse independent prescribers.

Nurse independent prescribers are able to prescribe any medicine including Prescription Only Medicines, licensed and unlicensed medicines for any medical condition within their level of experience and competence with some exceptions. As of 23rd April 2012, they are now permitted to prescribe any Schedule 2, 3, 4 or 5 Controlled Drug (except diamorphine, dipipanone or cocaine for the treatment of addiction).

Like NHS doctors, nurse independent prescribers cannot prescribe ‘blacklisted’ medicines (Part XVIIIA of the Drug Tariff) and can only prescribe Selected List Products (Part XVIIIB of the Drug Tariff) in accordance with the Drug Tariff. This restriction does not apply to private prescribing.

Nurse independent prescribers are also able to prescribe any borderline substances and appliances and reagents listed in Part IX of the Drug Tariff and can prescribe off-licence/off-label where it is accepted clinical practice.

Nurse Supplementary Prescribers

Nurses continue to be able to qualify as supplementary prescribers with many nurse prescribers already having a dual, independent prescribing and supplementary prescribing qualification.

Health professionals acting as supplementary prescribers can prescribe any medicine which could be prescribed by an NHS doctor including controlled drugs and unlicensed medicines as agreed by the patient and the doctor as part of a patient’s clinical management plan.


Pharmacist Prescribing

For a number of years there have been an increasing number of pharmacists qualifying as supplementary prescribers and following changes made to the regulations in 2006, the first pharmacists are now also starting to qualify as independent prescribers.

Pharmacist Independent Prescribers

Pharmacist independent prescribers’ authority to prescribe is very similar to nurse independent prescribers. They are also permitted to prescribe any Schedule 2, 3, 4 or 5 Controlled Drug (except diamorphine, dipipanone or cocaine for the treatment of addiction) as of 23rd April 2012.

Pharmacist Supplementary Prescribers

Like other health professionals acting as supplementary prescribers, pharmacist supplementary prescribers can prescribe any medicine which could be prescribed by an NHS doctor including controlled drugs and unlicensed medicines as agreed by the patient and the doctor as part of a patient’s clinical management plan.


Other NHS Prescribers

Optometrists, physiotherapists, radiographers and chiropodists/podiatrists are also able to act as supplementary prescribers. They too can prescribe any medicine which could be prescribed by an NHS doctor including controlled drugs and unlicensed medicines where there is patient need and as agreed by the patient and the doctor as part of a patient’s clinical management plan.

  

 


NHS Repeat Dispensing Service

Doctors, community practitioner nurse prescribers, nurse independent prescribers and pharmacist independent prescribers and all supplementary prescribers can participate in the NHS repeat dispensing arrangements.

Detailed information on Repeat Dispensing is available in the Repeat Dispensing section of this site.


Emergency Supply Requests

Doctors, dentists, community practitioner nurse prescribers, nurse and pharmacist independent prescribers and all supplementary prescribers can also request, in an emergency, the supply of a prescription only medicine which is not a Schedule 1, 2 or 3 controlled drug, if they would otherwise be entitled to prescribe that drug. The prescriber must give an undertaking to furnish a prescription within 72 hours.


Checking the Registration Status of Health Professionals

 

  GMC Searchable Register
The General Medical Council 'List of Registered Medical Practitioners' can be searched online by doctors name or GMC Registration. Alternatively check by telephone: 0845 357 0020 or 0161 923 6602. 
    GOC Searchable Register
The General Optical Council's Online Registers can be searched by name or GOC number, or alternatively you can ring the GOC on 0207 580 3898 to check the registration of a prescriber via telephone. 
  NMC Searchable Register
All nurses, midwives and specialist community public health nurses who wish to practise in the UK must be on the Nursing and Midwifery Council Register. The register can be searched online by name or NMC Registration number (PIN number) or alternatively check by telephone: 020 7333 9333.
  GDC Searchable Register
All dentists who wish to practise in the UK must be listed in the General Dental Council Register. The Register can be searched by name or registration number, or alternatively check by telephone: 0845 222 4141. 
 

General Pharmaceutical Council Searchable register
The GPhC 'Register of Pharmaceutical Chemists' can be searched by name or registration number or alternatively call: 0203 365 3600. The Register is annotated to indicate if a pharmacist is practising or non-practising and provides information on any prescribing qualifications.  

 

The registration status of Podiatrist, Radiographer or Physiotherapist prescribers can be checked on the Health Professions Council’s website. The register is annotated with the prescriber’s qualification and their prescribing restrictions. Available online: http://www.hpcheck.org/ or check by telephone: 020 7582 0866.

 


Frequently Asked Questions: Dental Prescribing

I have received a prescription for Chlorhexidine Oromucosal Solution Alcohol-free, 0.2% which was recently added to the Dental Prescribers Formulary. What item should I dispense against this?

Colgate Periogard Mouthrinse (Alcohol free 0.2% Chlorhexidine Rinse) meets this generic description. As the product is not listed in Part VIII of the Drug Tariff, endorsement of the product dispensed is required.  

I have received an FP10(D) prescription for ‘Colgate Duraphat Toothpaste’. Is this allowed?

Yes. Duraphat contains Sodium Fluoride 0.619%. Sodium Fluoride Toothpaste 0.619% DPF is listed in Part XVIIA of the Drug Tariff (the Dental Prescribing Formulary) therefore this prescription would therefore be passed for payment by the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA).

Dentists can prescribe products by their generic name or the proprietary equivalent (providing that the equivalent is not listed in Part XVIIIA of the Drug Tariff, the blacklist).

The NHSBSA PPD have returned a photocopy of an FP10 (D) Prescription for ‘Amoxicillin Tablets' marked disallowed. Why was this prescription not passed for payment?

The PSNC Information Team has received reports of ‘Amoxicillin Tablets’ being prescribed on Form FP10(D). Only items listed in the Dental Prescribing Formulary (Part XVIIA of the Drug Tariff) can be prescribed on Form FP10(D). As Amoxicillin tablets are not listed in Part XVIIA of the Drug Tariff, a prescription for this item would be disallowed. This applies both when the prescription is unendorsed and when the prescription has been endorsed with an item listed in the Dental Formulary. If pharmacies receive dental prescriptions for 'Amoxicillin Tablets'. The prescription should be returned to the dentist.

Similar reports have been received of Ibuprofen Oral Suspension being requested on Form FP10 (D). There is both a sugar-containing and sugar-free formulation of this product available. Only the sugar-free formulation is listed in the Dental Prescribing Formulary, therefore only 'Ibuprofen Oral Suspension BP Sugar-free' can be prescribed on Dental Prescriptions.

If pharmacies receive dental prescriptions for 'Ibuprofen Oral Suspension BP'. The prescription should be returned to the dentist for 'SF' to be added.

I have received an FP10(HP) Prescription for ‘Co-Dydramol 10/500 tablets.’ The prescription has been signed by a dentist working in a hospital, can this be dispensed?

Yes, hospital dentists issuing FP10 (HP) Prescriptions are not restricted to the Dental Prescribing Formulary. They are able to prescribe any drug or medical device that would normally be allowed on an FP10 Prescription.

Only products which are listed in the Dental Prescribing Formulary (Part XVIIA of the Tariff) can be prescribed on a dental prescription, FP10(D).

 I have received an FP10D dental prescription for Amoxicillin 250mg as tablets, however this is not available in this pharmaceutical form. If I dispense capsules against this prescription and endorse capsules will this prescription be passed for payment?

No. Dentists can only prescribe products in the Dental Formulary (Part XVIIA of the Drug Tariff) on Form FP10(D). Amoxicillin 250mg tablets are not listed in the Formulary so the prescription would not be passed for payment. As Amoxicillin 250mg tablets are not manufactured, the dentist has made an error. The prescription should be returned to the dentist to be amended to request capsules. 

Frequently Asked Questions: Nurse Prescribing

I have received a lilac FP10P Prescription written by a Community Practitioner Nurse Prescriber for "Oilatum Cream". Is this allowed?

Yes. Oilatum cream is listed in the Nurse Prescribers’ Formulary for Community Practitioners (Part XVIIB (i) of the Drug Tariff) under the heading ‘emollients’ so the prescription will be passed for payment.

I have received a Lilac FP10P Prescription for Sudocrem. Is this allowed?

No, A Community Practitioner Nurse Prescriber cannot prescribe Sudocrem as it is not listed in their Formulary (Part XVIIB (i) of the Drug Tariff). However, a nurse who has undergone additional training and is a Nurse Independent Prescriber would be allowed to prescribe Sudocrem as they are allowed to prescribe any licensed medicine for any medical condition including Schedule 2, 3, 4 and 5 Controlled Drugs.
 

I’ve received a Lilac FP10P Prescription asking for '150 Paracetamol Tablets', is this allowed?

No, the Drug Tariff only permits a Community Practitioner Nurse Prescriber to prescribe paracetamol in quantities up to 100. (Ref: Drug Tariff Part XVIIB(i)). Nurse Independent Prescribers are not limited in the quantity of paracetamol that they can prescribe.

I have received a Lilac FP10P Prescription marked ‘Nurse Independent Prescriber’ requesting ‘Microgynon 30.’ Is this allowed?

Yes, Nurse Independent Prescribers are allowed to prescribe any licensed medicine for any medical condition including Schedule 2, 3, 4 and 5 Controlled Drugs.

I have received an FP10 Prescription Form for ‘Phenobarbitone’ annotated ‘Nurse Independent Prescriber/Supplementary Prescriber’.

Phenobarbitone is a Schedule 3 Controlled Drug. Nurse Independent Prescribers are now able to prescribed any Schedule 2, 3, 4 or 5 Controlled Drug, so whether the nurse is an independent or supplementary prescriber does not matter as both are able to prescribe this drug.

How does the NHSBSA Prescription Pricing Division know whether the prescriber is acting as a supplementary prescriber or an independent prescriber?

The NHSBSA Prescription Pricing Division does not check whether a nurse or pharmacist is prescribing as an independent or supplementary prescriber so this prescription would be passed for payment. Primary Care Trusts have been given the role of monitoring to ensure that nurse independent prescribers and pharmacist independent prescribers are prescribing appropriately. The NHSBSA provide PCTs with detailed information on prescribing via the ePACT.net service. 

Back


DOWNLOADS: Some documents are available in PDF format, you will require Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or later for viewing which can be downloaded from the Adobe Website

DOWNLOADS: Some documents are available in ‘Microsoft Word’ format. If you do not have Microsoft Word, you can read these forms by downloading the free 'Word Viewer'. This program can be downloaded at the Microsoft website