Nurses to sign fit notes (med3)
Responsible department: Department for Work and Pensions
Qualified Nurse Prescribers can issue any medication, full assess and manage patient care, However it is still a legal requirement for doctors to sign Med3 ‘sick’ certificates.
The situation is frustrating for the patient who, having been assessed and treated by a qualified nurse with advanced skills, has to wait to get a Doctors approval should they need a period of absence from work.
Nurse prescribers are trained and trusted to manage a patient’s care, prescribe drugs, or admit them to hospital, but we cannot legally sign a document which allows the patient time off work for that same condition.
The Royal College of Nursing has extensively lobbied for nurses to be able to sign sick certificates /new ‘well’ certificate.
Allowing nurses to sign Med3 is sensible and cost-effective use of existing resources.
We the under signed urge you to discuss this issue with your colleagues in the Department of Health and Social Security and help effect a sensible solution.
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