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Zero tolerance for business practices that impede pharmacy professionals’ ability to deliver effective care

Posted:Mar 25th, 2024
Read Time: 2 Min Read

At its Board meeting on March 25, the Ontario College of Pharmacists, the registering and regulating body for the province’s pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and pharmacies, carefully considered feedback gathered directly from thousands of pharmacy professionals during a series of virtual town halls and an anonymous survey administered by the College over the past four weeks. In response, the Board has adopted the following position:

OCP has zero tolerance for business practices that compromise the ability of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to deliver safe and effective care to their patients.

“The information pharmacists and pharmacy technicians shared with the College is compelling.

We heard that pharmacists’ concerns about inappropriate pressure to conduct MedsCheck reviews is a symptom of a broader issue involving corporate influence that diminishes their decision-making autonomy as healthcare professionals. We heard that volume-focused corporate pressure results in sub-optimal care and a greater risk of error. And we heard that these pressures affect the well-being of pharmacists who fear, or experience, reprisal if they fail to meet corporate objectives and whose health is suffering due to the tension between trying to deliver high quality care to their patients while coping with corporate pressures to increase the number of services delivered.

We find this deeply troubling. We cannot stand by silently and allow business practices to interfere with the delivery of safe and effective patient care.

The College will consider every tool available to us to address those concerns. Counsel has been retained and are currently looking at all the legal options presented by the information we have gathered. We anticipate that this will most certainly include but not be limited to appointing investigators to investigate any ‘corporate-centric’ interference in registrants’ professional independence which are deemed to fall within our regulatory purview.

On behalf of all Ontarians, we wish to thank pharmacists and pharmacy technicians for their courage to come forward to share their stories and experiences with us.”

Shenda Tanchak, Registrar and CEO
Ontario College of Pharmacists

A full summary of the Board meeting can be found in the Board Report. The report contains a high level summary of survey data that was shared at the March 2024 Board meeting.


  • Nearly 1,300 registrants participated in a series of virtual town halls, providing approximately 3,000 individual comments related to corporate pressures exerted on their decision making as regulated healthcare professionals.
  • Nearly 4,300 registrants completed an anonymous survey, and provided more than 1,500 detailed comments, demonstrating their lived experiences with practicing under a range of corporate pressures.
  • 2023 pharmacy statistics:
    • Number of community pharmacies in Ontario: 4,942
    • Number of pharmacists registered in Ontario: 18,312
    • Number of pharmacy technicians registered in Ontario: 5,895