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Licensed Psychologist Prescriptive Authority

Concerning the authority of a licensed psychologist to prescribe psychotropic medication for the treatment of mental health disorders.
2023 Regular Session
Professions & Occupations
Bill Summary

The act requires 1 of the 7 members of the state board of psychologist examiners (board) to be a prescribing psychologist.

The act allows a licensed psychologist to prescribe and administer psychotropic medications if the licensed psychologist holds a prescription certificate issued by the board.

A licensed psychologist may apply to the board for a prescription certificate and must include in the application satisfactory evidence that the applicant:

  • Has completed a doctoral program in psychology;
  • Has completed a master of science in a clinical psychopharmacological program with specified areas of core instruction;
  • Has passed the psychopharmacology examination for psychologists;
  • Has completed a supervised and relevant clinical experience approved by the board;
  • Has successfully undergone a process of independent peer review; and
  • Maintains the required malpractice insurance.

A licensed psychologist with a prescription certificate (prescribing psychologist) is authorized to prescribe and administer psychotropic medications if the prescribing psychologist:

  • Maintains the required malpractice insurance;
  • Completes at least 40 hours of continuing education every 2 years; and
  • Maintains a collaborative relationship with the health-care provider who oversees the client's general medical care.

The board is authorized to promulgate rules to:

  • Implement procedures for obtaining a prescription certificate; and
  • Establish grounds for denial, suspension, and revocation of the certificates.

The Colorado medical board is required to review complaints regarding violations of the act and make recommendations to the board regarding disciplinary action.

The act requires a prescribing psychologist to disclose to each patient that the psychologist is not a licensed physician.

The act requires a prescribing psychologist to file with the board all individual federal drug enforcement administration registrations and numbers. The board and the Colorado medical board are required to maintain current records of every psychologist with prescriptive authority, including registrations and numbers.

The department of regulatory agencies (department) is required to annually collect information regarding prescribing psychologists, to compile the information, and to share the information with the office in the department responsible for conducting sunset reviews for inclusion in each scheduled sunset review concerning the regulation of mental health professionals.

APPROVED by Governor March 3, 2023

EFFECTIVE August 7, 2023

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause and takes effect 90 days after sine die.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)


Became Law


Bill Text

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details