Supporting new prescribing colleagues

02 August 2023
Volume 5 · Issue 8

Welcome to this August issue of the Journal of Prescribing Practice.

Do you remember your first few weeks and months as a qualified prescriber? I imagine you do, regardless of how long ago you obtained the qualification. I liken it to driving a car for the first time after passing your test and no one is in the passenger seat. All the same actions to do, all the same processes to follow but no guiding advice and all the responsibility for your actions.

This month, many newly qualified FY1 doctors will be joining clinical areas for the first time since graduating from medical school, and prescribing for the first time can be just as daunting for them as it is for non-medical prescribers. Expectations are high and confidence and competence can sometimes lag behind as they begin their prescribing journey, alongside learning about a new environment, new locations, new paperwork and juggling other tasks unsupervised, possibly for the first time. When I qualified as a nurse in the early 1990s, there were no non-medical prescribers and prescribing was the preserve of the medical profession, so new doctors had to learn fast. As nurses, we tried to guide and support them but remember that the accountability lies with them as the person signing the prescription.

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