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Prescriptive Authority

Prescriptive Authority

Wisconsin Statute 448.21(3) permits a physician assistant to issue a prescription order for a drug or device in accordance with rules promulgated by the Medical Examining Board.  Prescription orders prepared by the PA must contain the name, address, and telephone number of the supervising physician.  Physician assistants in Wisconsin are recognized as practitioners under state controlled substance law, s.961.01(19), which permits them to distribute and dispense controlled substances including schedule II through schedule V medications. Wisconsin PAs were already recognized as individual practitioners under federal controlled substance law, s.21 CFR 1300.01(17)(28), and are eligible to apply for mid-level provider DEA registration numbers.

A number of legislative changes for PA practice in Wisconsin became effective in February, 2014.  A summary of the changes to PA prescriptive practice is as follows:

  • A physician co-signature is no longer required for medical records in which prescriptions have been written (in outpatient settings) or in a hospital chart (for progress notes when medication orders are written).

  • An initial and at least annual review of the PA’s prescriptive practices must be performed, documented in writing, signed by both PA and supervising physician, and made available to the Medical Examining Board upon request (Med 8.08(2)(i)).  A sample form is available for review.

Related Resources:

WI Statute 448.21
WI Chapter Med 8 Link

WAPA Resource Library (Member-Only):

WI Chapter Med 8 PDF