President's Message: One giant leap forward

Updated on November 23, 2022 (Originally posted on November 8, 2022) The Tablet

As we get closer to the end of yet another year, I am also met with the end of my term as president. It has been an amazing year to say the least. Not everything went exactly according to plan, but I think everybody can agree that this year has pushed us further ahead as a profession and has made us all even more proud to be called pharmacists.

With our new expanded scope, we are now able to take care of our patients to a much higher level than before. Not only can we adapt any medication that a patient has been on for at least six months, apart from cancer meds, but we can also now inject any medications that we were entirely capable of doing before but were not allowed to, apart from cosmetic treatments. In addition to this, we can also extend emergency supplies for up to three months at a time now, for those prescriptions which do not quite meet the adaptation criteria.

With all that being said, I realize the timing of this aspect of the scope increase was not ideal for many of you, in that we are currently in the middle of flu/COVID vaccine season. However, many of these changes are things we have been asking for a long a time now, and if we were to say “no” or “not yet” at such a crucial time, it’s hard to say when we would be provided with such opportunities again in the future.

On a better note, prescribing is finally on our horizon. In talking with many of you, this is something that our profession has been wanting and waiting for ever since almost every one of you has been in pharmacy school, regardless of the year that may have been. 

While the exact medications and payment model of this new scope is going to be negotiated over the coming months, I know that the Association is going to be pushing extremely hard to make sure we are all as happy with the outcome as possible. This is only going to be the first stepping-stone in what will hopefully be a much wider scope in prescribing rights, better aligning us with other provinces, such as Alberta. In that respect, this will invariably bring about more avenues and revenue streams in pharmacy practice.  

Finally, and not for the first or last time, I want to thank the staff of the BCPhA for how amazing they have been throughout this whole process. I for one know we would not be in the position we are today as a profession without their amazing work, and tireless effort.  

Jamie Wigston
BC Pharmacy Association

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