Practice Certificate in Independent and Supplementary Prescribing – Level 6
Course code:

6011CPD
6012CPD

Duration:

13 weeks

Qualification:

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Location

Coventry University

Faculty:

Get in touch

Alison Bardsley (Associate Professor for Non-Medical Prescribing)

Clare James (Senior Lecturer/Course Director)

024 7679 5880 

024 7679 5961


aa8538@coventry.ac.uk

ab7334@coventry.ac.uk

Overview

Start dates: September and January (2 x 20 credit 13 week modules)

The Practice Certificate in Independent and Supplementary Prescribing course prepares eligible experienced registered healthcare practitioners to become independent and/or supplementary prescribers in order to deliver high quality, innovative and cost-effective care to patients in a wide range of healthcare settings.

Course detail

The course is accredited with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC), Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) and Healthcare Professions Council (HCPC).

The course runs over 2 x 20 credit 13 week modules. Both modules must be successfully completed to be eligible to apply for registration as an independent and/or supplementary prescriber with your governing body.

The first module covers the theoretical underpinning for prescribing practice (including pharmacology) and is delivered over 10 taught days within the University.

The second module is requires the clinical application of prescribing practice. This module requires the student to do 90 hours in supervised practice plus attendance for 4 taught days within the University.

About prescribing

There are two forms of prescribing in the UK - Independent Prescribing and Supplementary Prescribing:

  • Independent prescribing (IP) is where a practitioner is responsible and accountable for the assessment of patients with undiagnosed or diagnosed conditions and for decisions about the clinical management required, including prescribing. This form of prescribing is most similar to how doctors prescribe. 
  • Supplementary prescribing (SP) involves a voluntary agreement between the supplementary prescriber, an individual patient, and an independent prescriber (usually a doctor). The agreement about what can be prescribed is set out in a clinical management plan. 

Regulations about what medications can be prescribed can differ between professional groups and are also dependent upon which form of prescribing is used (IP or SP). In addition, each individual prescriber may only prescribe for conditions that are within their competence, which is usually set out within an agreed scope of practice.

View further information and resources to help students decide whether they wish to undertake a prescribing course .

Which professions can take this course?

The following list of professions for which prescribing legislation is currently in place:

Nurse  |  Midwife   |  Physiotherapist  |  Podiatrist/chiropodist  |  Dietician  |  Radiographer

Pharmacists and paramedics may only take the Level 7 course.

Entry requirements

Minimum entry criteria vary slightly for each profession.

The key criteria are numeracy skills

  • Applicants must have agreement of their employer to undertake the course and confirmation they will have appropriate supervised practice, for Nurses/Midwives a Practice Supervisor (PS) and a Practice Assessor (PA), and for Allied Health Professionals a Designated Medical Practitioner (DMP). See supervised practice section below, this person/s must be identified prior to applying for the course
  • Registered nurses and midwives must have at least 1 years’ experience
  • Physiotherapist, podiatrist/chiropodist and therapeutic radiographers with at least 3 years’ experience.
  • Diagnostic radiographers or dieticians with at least 3 years’ experience may undertake the supplementary prescribing programme.
  • The year preceding application, you must be in the clinical field in which you intend to prescribe.
  • Evidence of Disclosure and Barring check (Allied Health Professionals within the last 3 months)
  • Evidence of ability to study at a minimum academic level three (degree).

If self-employed, students must be able to demonstrate an identified need for prescribing and that all appropriate governance arrangements are in place.

Registered Nurses and Midwives

For nurses there are different options to train as a prescriber.

Nurse independent/supplementary prescriber (NMC course code: V300).
This course leads to a dual qualification enabling use of independent or supplementary prescribing. The course is open to registered nurses or midwives qualified through UK Universities that follow the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) curriculum.

To be eligible for the V300 you must be a registered first level nurse, midwife or specialist community public health nurse with at least 1 year post registration experience. You must be deemed competent by your employer to undertake the programme.

Community Practitioner Nurse Prescriber (CPNP)

The course is open to community specialist practitioners such as district nurses, school nurses and health visitors. On qualification, you can prescribe from the ‘Nursing Formulary for Community Practitioners’ (NMC course code: V150). Please visit this course page for more information. 

Pharmacist - Level 7 only

To train as an independent/supplementary prescriber you must:

  • Have at least two years' appropriate patient-orientated experience in a UK hospital, community or primary care setting following your pre-registration year.
  • Have identified an area of clinical practice in which to develop prescribing skills and have up-to-date clinical, pharmacological and pharmaceutical knowledge relevant to your intended area of prescribing practice.
Physiotherapist and Podiatrists/Chiropodists

In order to train as an independent/supplementary prescriber you need to:

  • Be registered with the HCPC in one of the relevant Allied Health Professions
  • Be professionally practising in an environment where there is an identified need to regularly use independent prescribing or supplementary prescribing
  • Have normally at least 3 years relevant post-qualification experience in the clinical area in which you will be prescribing.

and

  • Be working at an advanced practitioner or equivalent level
  • Be able to demonstrate how you reflect on your own performance and take responsibility for your own Continuing Professional Development (CPD) including development of networks for support, reflection and learning.
Dietician

If you are a dietician, you can undertake training to use supplementary prescribing if you:

  • Are registered with the HCPC
  • Are professionally practising in an environment where there is an identified need for you to regularly use supplementary prescribing
  • Have normally at least 3 years relevant post-qualification experience in the clinical area in which you will be prescribing.

and

  • Are working at an advanced practitioner or equivalent level
  • Are able to demonstrate how you reflect on your own performance and take responsibility for your own Continuing Professional Development (CPD) including development of networks for support, reflection and learning.
Radiographers

Therapeutic radiographers can train as independent/supplementary prescribers. Diagnostic radiographers can train as supplementary prescribers. In order to train you need to:

  • Be registered with the HCPC in one of the relevant Allied Health Professions
  • Be professionally practising in an environment where there is an identified need to regularly use independent prescribing or supplementary prescribing
  • Have normally at least 3 years relevant post-qualification experience in the clinical area in which you will be prescribing.

and

  • Be working at an advanced practitioner or equivalent level
  • Be able to demonstrate how you reflect on your own performance and take responsibility for your own Continuing Professional Development (CPD) including development of networks for support, reflection and learning.
Paramedics - Level 7 only

Paramedics can train as independent/supplementary prescribers. In order to train you need to:

  • Be registered with the HCPC in one of the relevant Allied Health Professions
  • Be professionally practising in an environment where there is an identified need to regularly use independent prescribing
  • Have normally at least 3 years relevant post-qualification experience in the clinical area in which you will be prescribing

and

  • Be working at an advanced practitioner or equivalent level as defined by Health Education England in collaboration with NHS England and the Allied Healthcare Professions professional bodies
  • Be able to demonstrate how you reflect on your own performance and take responsibility for your own Continuing Professional Development (CPD) including development of networks for support, reflection and learning.

Supervised Practice

To prepare as a prescriber students are required to undergo a period of learning and assessment in practice that is directed and assessed by the following:

For Nurses and Midwives

The Practice Assessor (PA) is a registered healthcare professional and an experienced prescriber with suitable equivalent qualifications for the programme the student is undertaking.

The Practice Supervisor (PS) must have:

  • Active prescribing competence applicable to the areas in which they will be supervising
  • Appropriate patient-facing clinical and diagnostic skills
  • Supported or supervised other healthcare professionals
  • The ability to assess patient-facing clinical and diagnostic skills. 
For Allied Health Professionals

The student must identify a Designated Medical Practitioner (DMP) who:

  • Is a registered practitioner within a GP practice and is either vocationally trained or is in possession of a certificate of equivalent experience from the Joint Committee for Post-graduate Training in General Practice Certificate OR is a specialist registrar, clinical assistant or a consultant within a NHS Trust or other NHS employer
  • The DMP must have agreed to provide supervision, support and shadowing opportunities for the student.
  • Has normally had at least three years’ recent clinical experience for a group of patients / clients in the relevant field of practice
  • Has experience or training in teaching and/or supervising appropriate to their role (this can be demonstrated by adherence to the Department of Health Guidance (2001).
  • Normally works with the trainee prescriber. If this is not possible (such as in nurse-led services or community pharmacy), arrangements can be agreed for another doctor to take on the role of the DMP, provided the above criteria are met and the learning in practice relates to the clinical area in which the trainee prescriber will ultimately be carrying out their prescribing role

This person/s are required to sign the student’s application form to state that they will support the student through the practice element of the course.


 

What you will study

The course consists of two modules:

  • 6011CPD Practice Certificate in Independent and Supplementary Prescribing (Degree)
  • 6012CPD Practice Certificate in Independent and Supplementary Prescribing (Degree)

Students are required to undertake both modules, which include theory taught days plus a period of direct supervised practice within their existing clinical setting in order to meet the competencies set out in the RPS “A Competency Framework for all Prescribers”.

The curriculum will be contemporary, and meet the current professional, statutory and regulatory body requirements including:

  • Clinical pharmacology including the effects of co-morbidity
  • Evidence based practice and clinical governance in relation to non-medical prescribing
  • Legal, policy, professional, psychological and ethical aspects
  • Professional accountability and responsibility
  • Consultation and decision making
  • Development of clinical management plans

The taught elements will be delivered using a range of learning and teaching strategies, including blended learning, e-learning, DVDs, lectures, workshops, presentations, directed study, tutorials, and independent study.

Benefits

To students:

  • Successful completion gives students eligibility to apply for registration with the NMC as an Independent and/or Supplementary or Community Practitioner Nurse Prescribing or HCPC or GPhC as an Independent and/or Supplementary Prescriber
  • Access to a wide variety of clinical expertise in acute and community care
  • Increased job satisfaction
  • Opportunity to network with fellow students from a range of specialties
  • Opportunity to build on credits towards a full academic award

To the employer:

  • Individuals will be able to challenge current practice and embed evidence based practice into their delivery of care
  • A deeper commitment to service delivery and patient care through individual greater job satisfaction
  • Workforce transformation

 

Fees and funding

Students may be funded by an employer or a sponsor or can self-fund. Some courses may be funded through Health Education England funding, please ask for details.

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