In September, the College posted proposed amendments to its By-law No. 3 for public consultation.
The amendments supported changes to the Drug and Pharmacies Regulation Act (DPRA) regulation, ongoing transparency initiatives within the College, and changes in the organizational structure and fees for the College.
While a number of administrative and housekeeping-type changes were made, the most significant amendments were related to changes in fees and changes to information that the College will post on the public register.
The College received 77 responses during the public consultation, with the majority coming from pharmacists in the community and hospital sectors. As well, comments were received from four organizations, including the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA), a Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) representing 25 hospitals in the North East region, the Ontario Pharmacists Association (OPA), and the Ontario Branch of the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacists (CSHP-OB).
The majority of submissions by practitioners expressed disagreement with the proposed fee structure for hospital accreditation, noting that they were too high and did not take into consideration the hospital’s size, complexity, budget, services offered, or number of staff.
OCP’s original proposal for hospital accreditation fees recommended opening fees of $6,000 and annual renewal fees of $5,000. The rationale for these fees was to recover the costs directly attributed to the hospital inspection program. They included a flat rate for hospital pharmacy accreditation, regardless of the number of beds in the hospital or services provided. This is consistent with community pharmacies as they all pay the same fee for accreditation, regardless of prescription volumes or specialty services.
However, the overwhelming feedback relating to hospital accreditation fees prompted a review of the program approach and associated costs. The program was examined to find savings through a less aggressive timeline and more efficiency through alternative approaches to physical site visits. Learn more about
College oversight of hospital pharmacies.
As such, before approving the proposed by-laws at their December 2015 meeting, Council recommended a reduction to fees for hospital pharmacies. The new fees for hospital pharmacies are now set at $4,000 at opening ($2,000 for application and $2,000 for issuance of a Certificate of Accreditation) and annual renewal fees of $3,500.
All other proposed amendments to the by-law were approved as circulated.
The by-law has been renamed to By-Law No. 4 and is now in effect. Hospital accreditation fees come into effect upon the proclamation of the amended DPRA regulation.