The concept of prescriptive authority resides in the ability to prescribe medications and the attendant responsibilities for this ability. Although the term prescription privileges is sometimes used to refer to this idea, it is argued that the term privileges is misleading, in that it does not connote the associated responsibilities of writing prescriptions.

Defining Prescriptive Authority

The ability to prescribe medications has existed for centuries. Various herbal and medicinal potions and concoctions have been used since recorded history, and the ability to prepare and prescribe these prescriptions has rested with trained and knowledgeable providers. More recently, as the various health professions began to emerge, the profession of medicine in particular, the abilities to diagnose and prescribe became recognized practices that physicians claimed as behaviors that they ...

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