Prescription Writing Authority

Licensed dentists in Illinois may write prescriptions only in connection with dental-related ailments or conditions. To write a prescription for any other non-dental condition is a violation of the Illinois Dental Practice Act and may make the dentist liable for license sanction.

By virtue of receiving the general dental license, a dentist may write prescriptions for non-controlled substances. However, if a dentist wishes to have the authority to prescribe for controlled substances as defined by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), then he/she must obtain two licenses from both the State of Illinois and the DEA.

Controlled drugs are listed by schedule, and any dentist who chooses to prescribe or dispense Schedule II through V drugs is subject to the provisions of the Illinois Controlled Substance Act as well as federal regulations. Illinois law requires that a dentist possess an Illinois controlled substance license for each place of business. Federal DEA registrations (DEA Number) are issued only to persons who hold an Illinois controlled substance license. Unless the doctor is dispensing or administering controlled drugs, then only one DEA number is needed to prescribe.

If a dentist intends to dispense or administer controlled substances directly to patients, there are a number of further state and federal regulations that are brought into play including proper record keeping of drug purchases, storing on site, dispensing logs, and reports. Be sure to contact the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation prior to dispensing or administering controlled drugs to patients.



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