Download a PDF copy of this Fact sheet: Nurse practitioner category notation (Victoria) (86KB).
The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) carries out functions as set by the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law, as in force in each state and territory (the National Law). The NMBA regulates the practice of nursing and midwifery in Australia, and one of its key roles is to protect the public. The NMBA does this by developing registration standards, professional codes, guidelines and standards for practice which together establish the requirements for the professional and safe practice of nurses and midwives in Australia.
This fact sheet provides guidance regarding the nurse practitioner category notation for nurse practitioners practising in Victoria.
In Victoria, the authority for nurse practitioners to prescribe requires them to have a notation of a category of nurse practitioner against their name on the national register. This is in addition to the endorsement as a nurse practitioner.
Each nurse practitioner category has a list of schedule 2, 3, 4 and 8 poisons (‘drug list’) that a nurse practitioner with a notation for the particular category is authorised to prescribe. The individual nurse practitioner may prescribe any of the drugs listed, as long as it is consistent with their scope of practice.
The Nurse Policy Branch of the Victorian Government Department of Health manages the content of the drug lists. The lists are published in the Drugs and poisons regulation section of the department’s website.
All nurse practitioners wishing to prescribe in Victoria must have a notation of one or more categories This is a notation to meet the requirements of the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act 1981 (Vic) and not a condition on practice.
The eight categories of nurse practitioner are:
Any nurse practitioner originally authorised or endorsed in another jurisdiction will need to apply to have a notation of a category recorded next to the nurse’s name on the register.
To avoid confusion across states and territories, nurse practitioners no longer practicing in Victoria will need to apply to have this category notation removed.
The notation for the category of nurse practitioner will appear against the registrant’s name on the national register. A nurse practitioner without one of these notations on the register is not authorised to prescribe medications in Victoria.
Any endorsed nurse practitioner wishing to prescribe medicines in Victoria.
This is to meet the requirements of the Victorian drugs and poisons legislation. Each nurse practitioner category has an approved list of schedule 2, 3, 4 and 8 poisons (‘drug list’) that a nurse practitioner is authorised to prescribe. You may prescribe any of the drugs listed for your category as long as it is consistent with your scope of practice.
Your own practice and prescribing requirements will determine this. You need to review the content of the drug lists published in the Drugs and Poisons regulation section of the department's website .
You will need to provide evidence of advanced clinical nursing practice within the category for which you are applying. The onus is on you to ensure your prescribing requirements will be met by the category nominated in the application.
Yes. Although each category drug list is extensive, you may need to seek a notation for more than one category to reflect your prescribing practice.
No. The notation is not dependent upon a specific qualification. Nurse practitioners are required to complete approved education modules or programs in prescribing to meet the needs of initial endorsement.