Independent mental health nurse prescribing


A. Jones
Llwyn-y-Groes Psychiatric Unit
North East Wales NHS Trust
Croesnewydd Road
Wrexham LL13 7TD


Independent prescribing (IP) is a new form of prescriptive authority for mental health services. Very little is known about where IP is being implemented and factors to support or constrain its adoption. An opportunistic sample of 119 respondents made up of nurses, doctors, support workers, occupational therapists and social workers completed an online survey. The sample worked in adult, old age and substance misuse services. Hospital wards and community mental health teams were identified as the highest ranked areas for implementation. A total of 68% of the sample identified pharmacology as the area for further training. And 40% of the sample felt that IP had been introduced to make services more effective. This opportunistic sample supported IP as a means to offer greater patient choice and as a method to broaden the boundaries of nursing practice. Integral to this development is the link between the psychiatrist and IP nurse in terms of work allocation and supervision.