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Other Delegation FAQs

If I work in a clinic owned by the hospital, is this considered a facility-based practice?

No.  Free standing clinics, centers or other medical practices that are owned or operated by or associated with a hospital or long term care facility that are not physically located within the hospital or long term care facility are not considered facility based practices.  Prescriptive authority agreements are required in these settings.

Is a prescriptive authority agreement required in a hospital or long term care facility-based practice?

Although it is possible to use a prescriptive authority agreement in a hospital or long term care facility based practice, it is not required.  You may continue to practice under protocols in these settings.  APRNs and PAs must exercise prescriptive authority under one of these delegation mechanisms.

At how many facilities can one physician delegate prescriptive authority through protocols?

A physician may delegate prescriptive authority via facility based protocol at no more than one licensed hospital or no more than two long term care facilities.  

Who may delegate prescriptive authority in a hospital facility-based practice?

In a hospital facility based practice, the delegating physician may be the medical director, the chief of medical staff, the chair of the credentialing committee, a department chair, or a physician who consents to the request of the medical director or chief of the medical staff to delegate.  

Who may delegate prescriptive authority in a long term care facility based practice?

In a long term care facility based practice, delegation is by the medical director.

Who can prescribe Schedule II drugs under physician delegation?

APRNs or PAs may prescribe schedule II drugs in the following situations:


(1) in a hospital facility-based practice, in accordance with policies approved by the hospital's medical staff or a committee of the hospital's medical staff as provided by the hospital's bylaws to ensure patient safety and as part of care provided to a patient who:


(A) has been admitted to the hospital for an intended length of stay of 24 hours or greater; or

(B) is receiving services in the emergency department of the hospital; or


(2) as part of the plan of care for the treatment of a person who has executed a written certification of a terminal illness, has elected to receive hospice care, and is receiving hospice treatment from a qualified hospice provider.


Can schedule II authority be delegated in a free standing emergency department that is affiliated with a hospital?

No.  A free standing emergency department is not located within the hospital anddoes not qualify as an eligible site for delegation of schedule II authority.  The physician may only delegate authority to prescribe controlled substances in schedules III through V in this setting.  Authority to prescribe dangerous drugs, nonprescription drugs and devices may be delegated in any setting.  

How often is physician consultation required when prescribing controlled substances?

 APRNs and PAs must consult with the delegating physician for refills of a prescription for controlled substances after the initial 90 day supply.  Consultation is also required when prescribing controlled substances for children under the age of two years.  In both cases, the consultation must be documented in the patient’s medical record.

Can APRNs and PAs in hospital-based clinics continue to prescribe drugs in schedules III through V?

Yes.  Nothing changed for delegation of prescriptive authority for controlled substances in schedules III through V.