Mental Health Nurse Prescribing in New Zealand and the United Kingdom: Comparing the Pathways

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PURPOSEPrescriptive authority in the area of mental health care is significantly different between New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Exploring the educational preparation and context differences aids understanding of the present dearth of mental health nurse prescribers in New Zealand.CONCLUSIONSThe barriers experienced in implementation and extension of prescribing rights have been similar in both countries.PRACTICE IMPLICATIONSUntil roles change, registered nurses in New Zealand may be reluctant to undertake the challenging and demanding step to gain prescribing rights. The potential for nurses to make a difference in the lives of people with mental illness in New Zealand is therefore constrained.

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