Opening a Community Pharmacy

Before a new pharmacy can open to the public it must be accredited by the Ontario College of Pharmacists. To be accredited, the applicant(s) and the new pharmacy must meet all of the criteria set out in the Drug and Pharmacies Regulation Act, 1990 and its regulations.

Step 1: Submit an Application for Certificate of Accreditation as a Pharmacy

A complete application must be submitted to the College prior to construction and at least 45 days prior to the proposed opening date of the new pharmacy and includes:

  1. Application for Certificate of Accreditation as a Pharmacy
  2. Application fee
  3. A Director of a Corporation Declaration of Good Character for every pharmacist director of the operating corporation
  4. A copy of the articles of incorporation for the operating corporation (only required if the corporation has never operated a pharmacy in Ontario)
  5. A copy of the share certificates issued for the operating corporation (only required if the corporation has never operated a pharmacy in Ontario)
  6. A signed copy of the Data License Agreement (“DLA”) (a copy of the DLA can be downloaded from your OCP registrant’s account under the “DLA” tab)
  7. A pharmacy floor plan for OCP approval labelled with the following details:
    • Total square footage of area to be accredited – if the pharmacy is part of a larger area, clearly delineate the pharmacy portion and identify how the accredited area is kept secure/physically separate from the non-accredited area
    • Total square footage of dispensary (area behind the counter)
    • Location of required two sinks in the dispensary (if the pharmacy does Level B or C compounding you must also show the additional sink in the compounding room)
    • Location of acoustically private consultation room or area
    • Location of compounding area(s) and C-PEC (hood) if any – if the pharmacy will not be providing compounding services, please indicate “no compounding” on the floor plan

Applications may be submitted by email to, faxed to 416-847-8399 or mailed to the attention of Pharmacy Applications & Renewals at 483 Huron St, Toronto, ON M5R 2R4.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The College evaluates each person who is an applicant based on the criteria set out in Part III of the Regulations under the Drug and Pharmacies Regulation Act including an assessment to determine if past and present conduct of the proposed owner(s) affords reasonable grounds for the belief that the pharmacy will be operated with decency, honesty and integrity and in accordance with the law. The College will take whatever time is necessary to complete this assessment. Application processing time varies and your proposed date of opening is subject to change.

Step 2: Activate Assurance and Improvement in Medication Safety (AIMS) Pharmapod account

Once the College has processed your application, you will be contacted by Pharmapod, the third-party vendor for the AIMS Program. Follow the instructions outlined in the Pharmapod email with the subject line “Pharmacy Name – Invitation to Pharmapod” to activate your account.

Step 3: Scheduling an Assessment

Once an application has been approved, a Community Operations Advisor will contact the Designated Manager of the pharmacy to schedule an assessment prior to the proposed opening date. Access details of the assessment criteria in the Accreditation Assessment Criteria for Community Pharmacies.

Step 4: The Assessment

Issuance of a Certificate of Accreditation is subject to approval of the application, a satisfactory assessment of the pharmacy and successful activation of the pharmacy’s AIMS Pharmapod account. For more information on the assessment process, please review the Protecting the Public section of our website.

Once a Community Operations Advisor has completed their assessment and is satisfied that the operation is safe and the public is protected, notification will be sent to Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) confirming the pharmacy has been accredited. The pharmacy will then be activated and have a profile on the College’s Find a Pharmacy or Pharmacy Professional tool.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Ensure all paperwork required by Ontario Drug Benefits has been filed. ODB is not open on weekends. All new openings must occur on a weekday.

If you have any questions about the accreditation process send an email to or call 416-962-4861 ext. 3600