Since 1989, when delegated prescriptive authority was enacted for advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) and physician assistants (PAs) practicing in in Texas , the Legislature changed the law several times. The biggest changes, to date, occurred in 1995 and 2013.
From 1989 – August 31, 1995, physicians were limited to delegating prescriptive authority only in medically underserved sites. In 1995, the Texas Legislature expanded physicians’ authority to delegate prescriptive authority to also include APRNs and PAs practicing in physicians’ primary practice sites, facility-based practices. Important changes also included expanding the definition of medically underserved sites and eliminating the dual signature requirement (i.e., a physician and APRN or PA, both, had to sign the prescription).
The Texas Legislature expanded the types of sites through successive legislative sessions until the law was so confusing that very few APRNs, PA, and delegating physicians fully understood the law. Finally, in 2013, the Texas Legislature eliminated site-based prescriptive authority through Senate Bill (SB) 406 (83rd Texas Legislature, Regular Session).
APRNs, PAs and delegating physicians who need to understand the exactly how the law changed on November 1, 2013, when SB 406 was implemented, may refer to the Prescriptive Authority Law Comparison Tables.