Career advice

Becoming a nurse prescriber: how it could take your career in unexpected directions

Find out what you need to do to be qualified to practise as a non-medical prescriber

Non-medical prescribing offers nurses greater autonomy, and patients a shorter care pathway

What is non-medical prescribing?

The term covers prescribing by healthcare professionals other than doctors. Alongside nurses, it includes pharmacists and allied health professionals.

Where nurse prescribing is now, and how we got here

There are almost 50,700 independent or supplementary nurse prescribers and 40,300 community practitioner nurse prescribers on the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) register . Figures have risen steadily over the past five years, particularly for independent or supplementary prescribers, the number of whom has increased by 13,710 since 2017.

It was back in 1986 that Conservative peer Baroness Julia Cumberlege recommended community nurses be


Want to read more?

Unlock full access to RCNi Plus today

Save over 50% on your first three months:

  • Customisable clinical dashboard featuring 200+ topics
  • Unlimited online access to all 10 RCNi Journals including Learning Disability Practice
  • RCNi Learning featuring 180+ RCN accredited learning modules
  • NMC-compliant RCNi Portfolio to build evidence for revalidation
  • Personalised newsletters tailored to your interests

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?