Independent Prescribing Course

Non-Medical Prescribing course prepares you to prescribe medicines from the British National Formulary (BNF) in your area of competence, assisting you in extending your practice. You’ll learn to prescribe safely, appropriately and cost-effectively, as both an independent and supplementary prescriber.

Who should attend?

You’ll already be a registered nurse, midwife, pharmacist, physiotherapist, paramedic, chiropodist, podiatrist, dietician, diagnostic or therapeutic radiographer, and this course may interest you because there is a recognised need for you to prescribe within your clinical practice.

Entry requirements

  • Registered for 24 months with the GPhC (pharmacists). Additionally, pharmacist applicants must have at least 24 months experience in the specialist role in which they will prescribe and must take this module at level 7.
  • Registered for 12 months with the NMC (nurses/midwives).
  • Registered with the HCPC (allied health professionals – with appropriate experience; paramedics must be working in an advanced practice, non-ambulance setting and must take this module at level 7.

University of Suffolk
Independent Prescribing Course
Address: Waterfront Building, 19 Neptune Quay, Ipswich IP4 1QJ
Tel: +44 (0) 1473 338833

Independent Prescribing Course: Empowering Optometrists for Enhanced Eye Care


Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the Independent Prescribing Course, a program designed to empower optometrists with the knowledge and skills necessary for independent prescribing. In this article, we will explore how the Independent Prescribing Course equips optometrists to take an active role in eye care by directly prescribing medications when appropriate, expanding their scope of practice, and enhancing overall patient outcomes.

Section 1: The Role of Independent Prescribing for Optometrists

Independent prescribing allows optometrists to play a more significant role in eye care by directly prescribing medications. By completing the Independent Prescribing Course, optometrists gain the legal authority to independently assess patients, diagnose eye conditions, and prescribe medications, enabling them to provide comprehensive and individualized care within their scope of practice.

Section 2: Overview of the Independent Prescribing Course

The Independent Prescribing Course is specifically tailored to meet the needs of optometrists. It focuses on developing their clinical knowledge, assessment skills, and prescribing competencies to effectively manage a wide range of eye conditions and optimize therapy outcomes for patients.

Section 3: Pharmacology and Medications in Optometry Practice

The Independent Prescribing Course places a strong emphasis on pharmacology and the use of medications in optometry practice. Optometrists gain in-depth knowledge of ocular medications commonly used in the management of various eye conditions, including their mechanisms of action, potential side effects, and considerations for safe administration. This knowledge empowers them to make informed decisions, prescribe appropriate medications when necessary, and optimize medication therapy for their patients.

Section 4: Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis in Optometry Practice

The Independent Prescribing Course equips optometrists with advanced clinical assessment and diagnostic skills relevant to optometry practice. They learn to perform comprehensive eye evaluations, interpret diagnostic tests, and make accurate diagnoses related to various eye conditions. These skills enable them to develop individualized treatment plans that may include medication prescriptions, leading to more targeted and effective therapy strategies.

Section 5: Integration of Medication Management in Eye Care

The Independent Prescribing Course provides optometrists with specialized training in integrating medication management into eye care. They learn how to incorporate medication therapy alongside other therapeutic interventions, such as vision correction, low vision aids, and preventive eye care. By prescribing medications as part of their treatment approach, optometrists can address underlying eye conditions, manage symptoms, and optimize overall patient visual health.

Section 6: Collaborative Practice and Interdisciplinary Collaboration

Optometrists who complete the Independent Prescribing Course actively engage in collaborative practice and interdisciplinary collaboration. They work alongside ophthalmologists, primary care physicians, and other healthcare professionals to ensure coordinated and patient-centered eye care. This collaboration enhances medication management, promotes effective communication, and fosters a team-based approach to optimizing patient visual outcomes.

Section 7: Advantages of Independent Prescribing for Optometrists

Becoming an Independent Prescribing Practitioner as an optometrist offers several advantages:

1. Expanded Scope of Practice: Independent Prescribing Practitioners in optometry can provide a more comprehensive range of interventions, including prescribing ocular medications, to optimize therapy outcomes and patient visual health.

2. Patient-Centered Eye Care: By having the authority to prescribe medications, optometrists can actively participate in the management of eye conditions, tailor treatment plans, and provide individualized care that meets the specific needs and goals of their patients.

3. Enhanced Eye Disease Management: Integration of medication therapy in optometry practice allows optometrists to optimize the management of various eye diseases, such as glaucoma, dry eye, and allergic conjunctivitis, leading to improved patient outcomes and quality of life.

4. Professional Growth and Development: Completion of the Independent Prescribing

Course opens doors to professional growth, specialization, and leadership opportunities within the field of optometry. It allows optometrists to contribute to advancing their profession and play an active role in shaping eye care policies related to medication management.


The Independent Prescribing Course empowers optometrists to advance their practice and enhance eye care through independent prescribing and medication management. By completing this program, optometrists can expand their scope of practice, optimize medication therapy, and provide comprehensive care that promotes improved patient visual health and overall well-being.

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