What is a Prescription Drug?
A prescription drug (also prescription medication or prescription medicine) is an approved medicine that is controlled by legislation to require a medical prescription before it can be obtained. The term is used to distinguish it from over-the-counter drugs which can be obtained without a prescription. Different jurisdictions have different definitions of what constitutes a prescription drug.
Regulation in United States
In the United States, the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act defines what requires a prescription. Prescription drugs are generally authorized by veterinarians, dentists, optometrists, medical practitioners, and advanced practice nurses. It is generally required that an MD, DO, PA, OD, DPM, NMD, ND, DVM, DDS, or DMD, some psychologists,clinical pharmacists, nurse practitioners and other APRNs write the prescription; basic-level registered nurses, medical assistants, emergency medical technicians, most psychologists, and social workers as examples, do not have the authority to prescribe drugs.
Was passed into law by the Congress of the United States in 1970. The CSA is the federal U.S. drug policy under which the production, importation, possession, use and supply of certain substances is regulated. The legislation created five Schedules (classifications), with varying qualifications for a substance to be included in each.The safety and effectiveness of prescription drugs in the US is regulated by the federal Prescription Drug Marketing Act of 1987.
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