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NPs and Prescribing Controlled Substances

The College and Ontario government are working on regulation changes that will enable Ontario NPs to prescribe controlled substances.

Note: We will be updating this page as more information becomes available. Please check back often.

Currently, NPs in Ontario do not have the authority to prescribe controlled substances.

On December 7, 2016, Council approved draft regulations and by-laws to be sent to nurses and stakeholders for feedback. If approved by Council and government in the future, the regulation changes will expand NPs’ scope of practice to include prescribing controlled substances.

To support safe client care in the implementation of this new area of practice, the proposed regulations include a condition that NPs must meet educational requirements related to controlled substances.

The education covers competencies related to safe, effective and ethical prescribing, and managing clients who are treated with controlled substances. This education will build on NPs’ existing competencies by addressing the unique risks associated with controlled substances.

NOTE: The Feb. 14 deadline to give feedback on the proposed changes has now passed. The feedback will be considered as the College develops policies and processes needed to support this anticipated change in NP scope of practice.

The College is working with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care to implement the proposed regulation changes by the end of March 2017, subject to Council and government approval. We will inform all stakeholders once we know the exact implementation date.


Q&As: General
Q&As: Proposed regulations and by-law changes
Q&As: Controlled substances education requirement

Additional Information:
Page last reviewed December 15, 2016