Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) Prescribing and Dispensing (P&D)

Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)

Prescribing and Dispensing (P&D)

For the CNS, all prescribing is restricted according to A.R.S. § 32-1651


To apply for prescribing and dispensing authority, the CNS must:

  1. Complete education and training equivalent to the requirements to prescribe and dispense pharmacological agents of a registered nurse practitioner, including successful completion of a nationally accredited advanced practice nursing program
  2. Hold national certification
  3. Be licensed as a Registered Nurse in Arizona or hold an active multistate license
  4. Be certified by the Arizona State Board of Nursing as a CNS
  5. Apply for P&D privileges through the Nurse Portal by clicking on “Request Prescriptive Authority
  6. Submit evidence of a minimum of 45 contact hours of education within the three years immediately preceding the application, obtained in pharmacology and/or the clinical management of drug therapy. (All 45 hours shall be completed within the three year period immediately preceding the application date.
    1. The required contact hours must be obtained from an accredited conference, class, mediated or self-study. The pharmacology hours must be consistent with the population focus of education and certification
    2. A copy of the continuing education certificate(s) must be uploaded with the application. If the certificate does not state that hours are for pharmacology and/or the clinical management of drug therapy, an upload of the program will be required

(If you have 3 semester hours of pharmacology within the three years prior to the application date, it completes the education requirement. Official transcripts must be sent directly from the educational institution to the Arizona State Board of Nursing at [email protected].


Please refer to A.R.S. § 32-1651 and Article V (p. 3305) of the Arizona Nurse Practice Act for rules governing Advanced Practice Registered Nursing and R4-19-511 Prescribing and Dispensing Authority; Prohibited Acts (p. 3311).


Universities Offering Courses Required For Prescriptive Authority

Northern Arizona University Clinical Nursing Specialist Prescriptive Authority Course Bundle