Registered Nurse (Authorized Prescriber)

What is a registered nurse (authorized prescriber)?

The Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA) and the College’s General Council Regulation will bring a new role to registered nursing: registered nurse (authorized prescriber) or RN(AP). 

Those who wish to receive this designation must successfully complete an approved course of instruction and obtain a notation from the College’s Registrar to practice as a registered nurse (authorized prescriber) in any of the following areas:

  • Travel health
  • Reproductive health, sexually transmitted infections and blood borne pathogens
  • Diabetes health

An RN(AP) will be able to prescribe certain medications in these areas.

Registered Nurse (Authorized Prescriber) Practice Expectations

Competencies for the RN (Authorized Prescriber)

RN(AP) Program Now Accepting Registrations

We’re very happy to announce that Red River College is now accepting registrations for its Nurse Prescriber Program. This is the College-approved program for RNs wishing to prescribe in the areas of 1) travel health or 2) reproductive health/sexually transmitted or blood-borne infections. Courses will be offered three times per year and do include some pre-requisite and clinical components.

Click here for more information 

What is the difference between an RN(AP) and an RN(NP)?

RN(AP) and registered nurse (nurse practitioner) or RN(NP) are both vital roles. Each registered nursing role will continue to follow the standards and competencies that are core to all RNs. The difference between the two involves the span of knowledge, skill and judgment required in each role. 

Registered Nurse (Nurse Practitioner)

An RN(NP)’s scope of practice is broader than an RN(AP)’s. An RN(NP) is a registered nurse who has completed advanced education to autonomously provide a broad range of health-care services. An RN(NP) can independently prescribe drugs, order and manage the results of screening and diagnostic tests and perform minor surgical and invasive procedures.

Registered Nurse (Authorized Prescriber)

An RN(AP) provides care within three practice areas: travel health, reproductive health or diabetes health. An RN(AP) will only be able to prescribe certain medications in these areas. 

It is necessary to note that the RN(AP) role will not replace other health-care providers. The role is a necessary extension of care that is currently provided by RNs in order to address the needs of a community.

Click here to read FAQs on the RN(AP) role


For more information, contact:

Diana Heywood RN
Practice and Standards Consultant