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Can a Nurse Practitioner Prescribe Adderall?Prescriptive Authority for Practitioners

It’s common to need certain drugs but encounter difficulty in finding a doctor to prescribe them. The scarcity mostly affects drugs like Adderall. Adderall falls under controlled substances as it contains amphetamine/ dextroamphetamine– highly addictive stimulants. This drug is used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder(ADHD).

However, its addictive nature and possible fatality upon abuse make it dangerous, hence authority controlling who can prescribe it. So, can a practitioner nurse prescribe Adderall? To find out, read this article to the end. You will also find more on prescriptive authority for these nurses. Let’s dive in.

Can a nurse practitioner prescribe Adderall?

Yes, a practice nurse can prescribe Adderall. As a practitioner nurse, having earned a master’s or doctoral degree apart from registration in your specialty area, you are qualified to prescribe ADHD medication such as Adderall. However, you must apply for a DEA license.

The license gives you the ability to prescribe Adderall. Apart from prescribing, it would help if you also taught the patients how to cope with ADHD. Remember that there are different restriction levels and should check with your jurisdiction authority. The levels are full, reduced, and restrictive practice.

In each practice level, the prescription freedom differs. In full, you can prescribe controlled medicinal drugs without a doctor’s supervision. However, in the other two, you need the permission of a more qualified physician before prescribing to a patient.

What is nurse practitioner prescriptive authority?

This term refers to the freedom relevant control board grants certified and qualified nurses to prescribe drugs without supervision. However, this authority varies from state to state. When granted full prescriptive authority, the mid-level nursing practitioner can independently prescribe various medicines, including government-controlled ones.

Remember that when given the authority to prescribe the drugs, you should adhere to the following ethical nursing principles: beneficence, justice, confidentiality, nonmaleficence, and autonomy.

Who grants and regulates prescriptive authority to NP?

The state boards of nursing are the sole regulator of nurses practitioners” prescriptive authority. Each state has its board where the authority they grant slightly differs.

Different prescriptive authority

Full prescriptive authority

Grants total prescriptive authority to you if you fall in this jurisdiction.

Partial prescriptive authority

It’s also known as reduced practice, it grants authority, but you should prescribe in the presence of a doctor.

No prescriptive authority

This prescriptive authority limits you to operate under a doctor in your practice’s entirety.

Advantages and disadvantages of granting prescriptive authority to mid-level nursing practitioners

Like any other thing, granting prescriptive authority to nurses have its advantages and disadvantages.


  • Better access to healthcare since the nurses can access remote areas where doctors are too busy to venture.
  • Granting nurses practitioners prescriptive authority is cost-effective since it relieves the physicians from providing the services by themselves.
  • Efficient healthcare service delivery
  • Control of opium use in remote areas by offering education on the effects of drug abuse.


  • Possibilities of drug abuse since authorities can’t control who independent nurses practitioners sell to.
  • Wrong medication from misdiagnosis. By granting the nurses the prescriptive authority, a misdiagnosis can leave a patient taking the wrong medication when not checked.

How to safely prescribe Adderall

When you are prescribing drugs like Adderall, you need to take caution. You should always review the details before handing over the prescription to the patient. For the avoidance of doubt, you should follow a set step-by-step process.

Step-by-step procedure

  1. Thoroughly assess the patient’s condition. This will help you with the prescription.
  2. Establish the patient’s goal. You should know what the patient wants to achieve by taking the drug. In doing so, you will curb drug abuse.
  3. Select the correct dose. While at it, consider the patient’s age, condition, and the cost of the drug.
  4. You will then prescribe Adderall. You should use a language the patient understands best if need be. By doing that, you will mitigate common prescription errors.
  5. Before releasing the patient, provide relevant, educative information regarding the drug. It would be best to teach the patient how to take medicine, the drug’s side effects, refills, and inform them when they should go for follow-up.

Other common medication that you can prescribe as a practitioner

Apart from controlled medicinal drugs like Adderall, you can prescribe the following:

  1. Contraceptives
  2. Cholestrerol medication
  3. Cardiovascular drugs
  4. Antibiotics
  5. Analgesics
  6. Anti-hypertensives
  7. Bronchodilators
  8. Thyroid medication

Common Prescription Mistakes a Practioner Nurse Must Avoid

As much as a human is to error, you should always take care when prescribing controlled drugs. Failure to take care, you can end up making any of the following mistakes:

  1. Giving incorrect prescriptions. The error mainly arises if you happen to dictate the prescription orally. Any bit of misunderstanding between you and the patient can lead to severe medication errors.
  2. Issuing incorrect dose. You must counter-check if the dose you are giving the patient is the right one.
  3. Delay in writing a prescription. This might happen if you are waiting to monitor a patient’s condition. While at it, the patient’s condition can deteriorate further.
  4. Failure to consider allergies. Many medicines comprise of chemicals that can cause allergic reactions. It would help if you always asked the patient about any allergies they may have.
  5. Illegible handwriting prescriptions. If you are handwriting the prescription, try to be as straightforward as possible. Failure to do so, the patient may wrongly read the prescription and end up with the wrong medication.
  6. Failing to educate the patient on the medication. It would be best if you educated the patient on the possible side effects for their preparation.

Key takeaways

As an advanced practice nurse, you can prescribe Adderall to your ADHD patients. However, you must have the relevant documents to do so. Other than documents, you should check with the relevant authorities to ensure the restriction level in your area of jurisdiction.

When prescribing the drug, you should use the information in this article as a guide. You should follow the correct procedure too. By doing that, you will ensure your patient’s safety and be on the right side of the law.

About Rachel

Hi my name is Rachel; a registered nurse. I graduated from one of the best nursing programmes and have been working in the medical field for 10 years. As a licensed practical nurse, I understand the plight that comes with the job. While I enjoy taking care of patients, I understand the long working hours that nurses have to deal with. We spend majority of the shifts walking around the medical centre making sure all patients are taken care of and this requires a lot of work and energy on the feet. https://bestnursingshoes.net has been created to help nurses from different parts of the world find the perfect shoes to reduce the strain on your feet and posture and make the job much easier.

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