Ngā tapuhi i roto hauora mate huka kua rēhitatia

Registered nurse prescribing in diabetes health

Registered nurses are authorised by the Council to prescribe in diabetes health under the Medicines (Designated Prescriber: Registered Nurses) Regulation 2016. The previous regulation for registered nurse prescribing in diabetes health has been revoked and the pathway to this prescribing authority was closed in 2017.  

Registered nurses prescribing in diabetes health are ‘designated’ prescribers with a condition in their scope of practice. The condition states “may only prescribe in diabetes health under supervision of a medical practitioner”.

These nurses may prescribe a limited subset of medicines from the medicines list for registered nurses practising in primary health and specialty teams. This list is specified by the Director-General of Health under the Medicines Act 1981 and published in the New Zealand Gazette. The Council also provides guidance on the use of this medicines list which can be found here.

Therefore, registered nurses prescribing in diabetes health may prescribe cardiovascular and diabetes prescription medications from the medicines list for people with diabetes in their care. They may also prescribe pharmacy and general sale items as well as consumables and devices within their area of practice and as per the PHARMAC schedule.

RN prescribing in Diabetes Health Recertification Audit Requirements

On June 30 2022, the recertification timeframe for registered nurses prescribing in diabetes health changed from annual to three-yearly. Recertification due dates now coincide with annual practising certificate renewal. More information about this change can be found in the Council's notice, published at

This evidence required for three-yearly recertification is:

  • Professional development – a minimum of 20 hours of professional development related to prescribing practice over the past three years.
  • Prescribing practice – a letter from an authorised prescribing mentor (senior doctor or mātanga tapuhi nurse practitioner) to confirm completion of  40 days (320 hours) of prescribing practice annually and maintenance of prescribing competence.
Prescribers in diabetes health who were required to submit recertification evidence after 1 July 2022 are no longer required to do so.

Please note registered nurses prescribing in diabetes health are no longer exempted from Council's random recertification audit unless a current PDRP portfolio is held. If a prescriber is selected for audit, they will need to supply the evidence required for registered nurses (excludes prescribing competencies).

Please upload documents to your MYNC portal under 'continuing competence' and email [email protected] to advise that you have done so. Professional development records must be named, verified, and include dates and durations. You may like to use the Professional Development Activities Template available for download on this page.