The UK Government is launching two consultations that aim to make it easier for patients to get the medicines they need by allowing:-
– the prescribing of controlled drugs, including for pain relief, by nurse independent prescribers and pharmacist independent prescribers.
– the supply and/or administration of morphine and diamorphine under Patient Group Directions by nurses and pharmacists for the immediate necessary treatment of sick or injured persons
A 12-week Home Office consultation will look at whether the Misuse of Drugs Regulations should be updated to enable the prescribing of controlled drugs such as morphine for pain relief, by specially trained nurses and pharmacists.
The Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) will simultaneously launch a consultation on proposals for changes to the legislation governing the supply and/or administration of pain relief through morphine and diamorphine by nurses and pharmacists working under Patient Group Directions.
In recent years, nurses and pharmacists have taken on increased responsibility for patient care by treating patients on a one-off basis, or by managing specialist clinics. These enhanced roles have improved access to and quality of patient care. However, limited access to appropriately qualified prescribers can result in a delay in a patient receiving medication and may inhibit a patient’s recovery.
Allowing Nurse and Pharmacist Independent Prescribers’ to prescribe Controlled Drugs will increase access to medicines for patients, improving care in areas such as palliative care, substance misuse, post-operative care and pain relief.