Call to Action – The Pharmacy Technician’s Role in the Handling of Controlled Substances

Pharmacy technicians play an important role in the delivery of high-quality health care. The pharmacy technician and pharmacist must work collaboratively so that their combined expertise is used to optimize the care and services provided to patients. PTSA has been working on a position paper to provide recommendations for the legislative changes necessary to support optimized pharmacy practice in the context of the procurement, receipt, preparation, provision, storage, destruction and related record keeping of narcotics, controlled drugs and targeted substances.

Download the position paper here: The Pharmacy Technician’s Role in the Handling of Controlled Substance

As pharmacy distribution specialists, pharmacy technicians are the natural discipline to take the lead on all distributive activities related to handling narcotics, controlled drugs, benzodiazepines and other targeted substances but legislative changes to support this practice are required. Granting legislative authority to pharmacy technicians will allow for the consistent application of processes to fulfill the necessary tasks that provide for the protection of controlled substances against loss or theft and allow pharmacists to redirect their attention to prevention, treatment and harm reduction strategies.

What can you do to help?

  • Share this position statement broadly to build awareness that action is needed now.
  • Ask your regulator what they are doing to help see the necessary changes made to the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and related regulations.
  • Voice your agreement with this statement by commenting below.

2 replies on “Call to Action – The Pharmacy Technician’s Role in the Handling of Controlled Substances”


I totally agree with this and have voiced my opinion on this matter

Jenn Beansays:

Ordering, receiving, and handling un-serviceable controlled substances are technical functions and best handled by pharmacy technicians. This federal legislation must be changed to align with the new standards of pharmacy across Canada.
Allowing technicians to accept responsibility for these medications seems like a logical next step in the evolution of Pharmacy; it would be virtually impossible to for Pharmacists to move to a predominately clinical role when they are still tethered to these technical tasks.
We, as Pharmacy Technicians, need to reach out to our regulatory boards all across Canada and let our representatives know that this is a priority to us and a change we support and want. It is essential for our regulatory bodies to support us with this effort of changing the Controlled Drug and Substances Act.
Below is a list of every regulatory body across Canada, let’s all reach out to our respective bodies and ask them what they are doing to move this forward.
Provincial Regulatory Bodies:
Alberta (The Albert College of Pharmacy has 2 technicians’ representatives on council; they are Dana Lyons and Don Ridley. )
British Columbia
New Brunswick
Nova Scotia
Prince Edward Island
Northwest Territories

Join the conversation!

Your email address will not be published. If you are a PTSA member, login here now! Required fields are marked *