In 2015 it was proposed that legislation be amended to allow paramedics, working at advanced level, to be able to prescribe. NHS England carried out a 12-week consultation from 26 February 2015 to 22 May 2015 to discuss five options. These ranged from:
- Option 1 – No change
- Option 2 – Independent prescribing for any condition from a full formulary
- Option 3 – Independent prescribing for specified conditions from a specified formulary
- Option 4 – Independent prescribing for any condition from a specified formulary
- Option 5 – Independent prescribing for specified conditions from a full formulary.
Of the five options, 76% of organisations and 62% of individuals preferred option 2.
In total, 96% of organisations and 90% of individuals were in favour of advanced paramedics being able to prescribe.
NHS England has worked closely with the Department of Health and Social Care, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the College of Paramedics – as well as the devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, to make changes to legislation to enable independent prescribing for any condition from a full formulary, within the paramedics scope of practice and competence.
During the consultation NHS England also sought views on the proposal for paramedics to be able to independently prescribe from a restricted list of controlled drugs. As this requires further changes to be made to the Misuse of Drugs Regulations, NHS England will now work with the Home Office and Advisory Council to advise Ministers. A decision is expected later this year.
Find out more
These documents provide more information about the consultation:
- Summary of the responses to the public consultation on proposals to introduce independent prescribing by paramedics across the United Kingdom – Provides a summary of the responses received to the consultation which was held between February and May 2015.
- Consultation on proposals to introduce independent prescribing by paramedics across the United Kingdom – The main consultation document which sets out the proposals.