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13 March 2000

NURSES ALLOWED TO PRESCRIBE MORE DRUGS -
"A LARGE STEP FORWARD"

The new powers for nurses to prescribe drugs, similar to those of doctors, have been welcomed as "a large step forward" for the profession by the Community Practitioners' and Health Visitors' Association today (Monday, 13 March).

But the CPHVA will be scrutinising the new proposals in detail to see which nursing specialisms the new regulations will apply to.

The CPHVA's Professional Officer for Practice Nursing, Rosemary McQuarrie, who drafted the CPHVA's response to the Crown II Report on Nurse Prescribing, said: "It is great news and a real bonus for the profession. It is very positive."

"However, the one concern that I have is that some nurses will only be allowed to prescribe a limited number of drugs and preparations."

The CPHVA's Professional Officer for School Nurses, Pat Jackson said: "While welcoming the document, we will be using the six-week consultation period to scrutinise the fine detail of the proposals."

"The CPHVA will wish to see who is included and excluded under the new powers because it has implications for the whole of our membership. The CPHVA's policy is to press for all community practitioners to have prescribing rights."

The CPHVA's Nurse Advisor, Thelma Sackman said: "This is truly an exciting move because it enables patients to receive treatment and care by practitioners who will have developed expert knowledge and skills in managing certain client groups."

"We would need to look at the training implications and how this would be managed. It is very important that when nurses are on these training courses sufficient cover is maintained so that care to patients, in the interim, is not compromised."

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NOTE TO NEWS EDITORS

For further information, please contact:

Rosemary McQuarrie 0468 931311
Shaun Noble Press Officer (020) 7939 7043 mobile 0468 69 39 40

CPHVA press releases can be seen on the MSF web site: www.msf.org.uk

The CPHVA is an autonomous professional section of the Manufacturing, Science and Finance union. The CPHVA represents 18,000 health visitors, school nurses, practice nurses and registered nurses working in the community in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

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