Abuse of Prescription Drugs

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ANA Position Statement - Approved 4/5/91 

ANA opposes fraudulent or incompetent prescribing activities by health care providers and the misuse of prescribed drugs by nurses themselves.

The association encourages comprehensive pharmacology education for nurses practicing in all settings to ensure safe and appropriate prescription of drugs. The association believes education for nurses with prescription privileges should include, but not be limited to:

a) education on the misuse, abuse and addictive potential of prescription drugs.
b) vulnerabilities of special populations which place them at higher risk for drug dependence, i.e. newborns, adolescents, preadolescents, elders, and individuals with chronic illnesses, including substance dependency and mental illness.
c) legal provisions for accountability of the nurse for assessment, intervention and evaluation in relation to prescription, illicit and legal drugs (alcohol).
d) education in prescription practice and management for metabolic altering natural substances such as steroids and growth hormone.