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Independent prescribers set to gain CD-prescribing powers next month

By News team

Independent prescribers will be able to prescribe Controlled Drugs from next month (April 2012), Home Office minister James Brokenshire indicated yesterday (19 March 2012).

The legislation that will change pharmacists’ independent prescribing powers is expected to be laid before Parliament this month, he revealed in response to a written question posed by Yvonne Fovargue, Labour MP for Makerfield, at the request of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society.

Discussions are ongoing between the Department of Health and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency over the changes that must be made to the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 to enable CDs to be included in pharmacist and nurse prescribing formularies.

"The expectation is that the changes will take effect in April 2012," Mr Brokenshire said.

RPS Chief Executive Helen Gordon said: "The inability of independent pharmacist prescribers to prescribe CDs has been an anomaly for too long. We are very pleased that the Home Office has listened to our position and has now taken quick and positive action.

"This change will mean patients are able to access these important medicines in a timely way and allow development of new innovative pathways to meet patients’ needs."

The Home Office originally consulted in 2007 on plans to allow pharmacist independent prescribers to prescribe CDs and told PJ Online last year that the work was nearing completion.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 11097671

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