Nursing: Prescribing Rules and Professional Boundaries for Arkansas Advanced Practice Nurses

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About the Course

Opiate abuse has been deemed a public health epidemic. In 2017, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declared a public health emergency to combat the opioid epidemic. Nurse practitioners who prescribe controlled substances have a great responsibility to ensure patients receive the care they need while preventing their prescriptions from becoming a source of abuse or diversion. This course provides an overview of the safe and effective prescribing of controlled substances and three of the most common disease states that warrant more frequent prescribing of controlled substances. Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) issued a certificate of prescriptive authority after December 31, 2015, are required by the state of Arkansas to complete a 3-contact hour pharmacology continuing education (CE) course within two years of issuance of the prescriptive authority certificate. 

The course meets the Arkansas mandatory CE requirement for safe and effective controlled prescribing practices, including information on maintaining professional boundaries and the prescribing rules, regulations, and laws that apply to APRNs and all nurses responsible for the safe and effective prescribing practices for controlled substances in the state of Arkansas.

Learning Outcomes: 
Upon completion of this course, the learner will be able to:
  • Discuss substance use disorder and trends in opioid use and misuse.
  • Compare the opioid epidemic in Arkansas and the U.S.
  • Describe risk factors for prescription drug abuse, misuse, addiction, and diversion.
  • Differentiate the use of nonpharmacological and nonopioid strategies for pain control.
  • Describe Arkansas APRN prescriptive authority and registration requirements to drugs listed in Schedules III to V.
  • Describe the prescription drug monitoring program.
  • Discuss the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.
  • Analyze steps to ensure safe and effective prescribing of controlled substances, including professional documentation, patient-provider agreements, and informed consent.
  • Examine the treatment of pain, including evaluation, treatment, and medications.
  • Discuss adverse effects of opioids and use of naloxone.
  • Discuss APRN prescribing protocols and privileges in Arkansas.
  • Describe Arkansas APRN prescriptive authority, including controlled substances.
  • Discuss the treatment of anxiety and ADHD including evaluation, treatment, and medications used.

About the Author:
Shellie D. Hill, DNP, FNP-BC

Shellie D. Hill, DNP, FNP-BC, currently serves as full-time faculty as the FNP program coordinator and assistant professor in the MSN-NP program at Saint Louis University. She has been a practicing family nurse practitioner for 19 years and an RN for 26 years. Most of her clinical practice has been in primary care. She also has experience in urgent care and cardiology. Clinically, she works in corporate health care clinics part time, and she volunteers as an FNP in a clinic that manages underserved patients.

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  • Arkansas