New legislation introduced in the UK will allow advanced paramedics to prescribe medication to patients immediately, without the need for the patient to see a GP.

The change in legislation seeks to improve patient care, speed up access to treatment and prevent unnecessary visits to hospitals and GP practices, thus reducing overcrowding.

The legislation, which came into force on 01 April 2018, allows paramedics who successfully undertake training in independent and supplementary prescribing to have their HCPC registration annotated to record their ability to practise as a prescriber.

In the UK, Advanced Paramedics already work in GP practices as part of multi-disciplinary clinical teams. In such settings, Advances Paramedics are most commonly used to manage urgent, same day patient requests, which may also include home visits.

Legislative changes in the UK in recent years have allowed a number of other professions, such as nurses, pharmacists, physiotherapists, podiatrists, radiographers and dieticians to play an increasing role in prescribing medication for their patients.

Further information can be accessed here.