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Registered Nurse Prescribing

Prescribing by registered nurses makes it easier for New Zealanders to get the medicines and health care they need.

There are three levels of prescribing authority for nurses and each level has its own educational requirements:

  1. Nurse practitioners are authorised to prescribe any prescription medicine
  2. Registered nurse prescribing in primary health and specialty teams  prescribe from a schedule of common medicines for common and long-term conditions
  3. Registered nurse prescribing in community health - prescribe from a limited schedule of medicines.

You can check on the Register of Nurses to see if a nurse is authorised to prescribe.

The list of Medicines that Designated Registered Nurse Prescribers may prescribe is specified by the Director-General of Health under the Medicines Act 1981. This list is published in the New Zealand Gazette and may be found here as notice 2016-go5188.

All registered nurse prescribers are expected to keep up to date with changes to medicines. Please see PHARMAC