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Keywords:

  • Expansion of Nurse Authority;
  • Nurses;
  • Patients with Chronic Conditions;
  • Physicians;
  • Prescribing Medication

Aim

To explore the attitudes of patients with chronic conditions towards the expansion of nurse authority, with an emphasis on nurse prescribing of medications for chronic conditions.

Background

The rising number of chronically ill patients in Israel, concurrent with a shortage of physicians, has led to the delegation of authority from physicians to nurses, and this is particularly conspicuous in the prescribing of medication for chronic conditions.

Method

In this correlational study, a questionnaire was distributed to 230 community-based chronically ill men and women aged 18 and older who take at least one regular medication. Data were collected from February to April 2012. Data analysis was performed with the SPSS 19 programme. It includes descriptive and inferential statistics.

Results

Most respondents are in favour of expanding nurse authority to prescribing medication for chronic conditions but object to expanding nurse authority to prescribing new medication. Respondents also object to expanding nurse authority to prescribing medication for chronic conditions in the field of psychiatry. The older respondents and the higher their image of nursing, as well as their knowledge on expanding nurse authority to prescribing medication for chronic conditions, the more positive their attitudes towards this expansion of authority.

Conclusions

This study provides support for nurse prescribing of medication for chronic conditions in Israel. Policymakers in the field of nursing understand the national significance of increasing public awareness of expanding nurse authority to prescribe medication for chronic conditions.