An uncomfortable interface. Medicines legislation and its impact on the delivery of healthcare by registered nurses in very remote Australia: A mixed-methods study

Author Identifier

Katie Pennington

Date of Award


Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Master of Public Health


School of Medical and Health Sciences

First Supervisor

Jacques Oosthuizen

Second Supervisor

Kimberley Clark

Third Supervisor

Sabina Knight

Fourth Supervisor

Fatima Yaqoot


Registered Nurses (RNs) play a critical role in very remote Australia (VRA), where they enable timely access to medicines. This mixed-methods study examined legislation, knowledge, attitudes, and practices of RNs regarding the use of medicines and the law in VRA. Current legislation is inconsistent and confusing regarding authorised roles for RNs, and most have likely practised outside the law in the provision of medicines. There is a lack of evidence regarding the safety, quality, and consumer perspectives on RNs working throughout the complete medicines management cycle in VRA. Significant legislative and workforce reform is required to enable lawful practice.

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