News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

December 20, 2013

NEW PHARMACEUTICAL ACT TO GIVE PHARMACISTS GREATER AUTHORITY

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Manitobans will be able to see Pharmacists for some of their Health-care Needs: Minister Selby

Patients will soon be able to receive a broader range of health-care services from their pharmacists, Health Minister Erin Selby announced today.

“Pharmacists are among the most accessible health-care professionals for Manitobans,” said Minister Selby.  “Legislative changes and new practice guidelines will allow them to play a greater role in supporting the health and well-being of people in our communities while improving accountability and enhancing patient safety.”

The new Pharmaceutical Act and regulation, which comes into effect in the new year, will modernize and expand the scope of pharmacists’ practice in Manitoba.  Pharmacists will have the authority to prescribe and administer certain drugs under limited conditions to better meet the needs of patients.

In particular, pharmacists who undergo additional training will be able to issue prescriptions for minor ailments such as acne, athlete’s footand smoking cessation as well as administer vaccines to those  seven years of age and over including publicly funded vaccines for influenza, pneumococcal, pertussis and the human papillomavirus (HPV).

Pharmacists will also be able to issue short-term refill prescriptions for patients with chronic conditions until the patient can see their primary care provider, and prescribe and demonstrate how to use medical devices such as inhalers used to control asthma.

“The Manitoba Pharmaceutical Association supports the proclamation of the new act that will increase patients’ access to health care and contribute to better health outcomes for Manitobans,” said Kyle MacNair, president, Manitoba Pharmaceutical Association.  “Pharmacies are located throughout the province, in both larger urban settings and the many smaller rural communities, which allows for this new legislation to enable pharmacists to use their drug therapy expertise to benefit all Manitobans.”

Under the act, the Manitoba Pharmaceutical Association will become the College of Pharmacists of Manitoba.  The college will enhance patient safety by establishing practice guidelines for members and training requirements for pharmacists to provide the additional health-care services.

Only pharmacists who have undergone training will be allowed to exercise their greater authority to prescribe drugs for minor ailments and administer drugs and vaccines by injection.

Under the new act, pharmacy technicians will also be required to meet education and training requirements consistent with requirements implemented in other provinces.

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