Frequently Asked Questions

What information should be included on the business licence of the pharmacy?

The business licence must be current and valid, and must list the name of the Direct Owner, the pharmacy (operating) name, and the correct pharmacy address. If the pharmacy licence does not contain separate areas for the pharmacy name and the Direct Owner name, the following format should be used: “[Direct Owner Name] DBA [Pharmacy Name]”.

For further information on business licence requirements, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Who is responsible for uploading the business licence for a pharmacy renewal application, and how do I upload one?

The business licence can be uploaded to the Pharmacy Portal 75 days prior to the licence expiry by the Authorized Representative(s) OR the pharmacy manager. To access the pharmacy portal, log into eServices, go to ‘My Pharmacies’ and scroll to the bottom of the page. At this point, you may have one of two views depending on your role(s): 

  • Authorized Representative: Click the ‘+’ sign next to the name of the Direct Owner to expand the list of pharmacies owned by that Direct Owner. Find the pharmacy due for renewal and click on the hyperlinked pharmacy name to access the pharmacy portal. Once you are in the Pharmacy Portal, review the pharmacy information on each tab and click the ‘Next’ button to advance to the ‘Business Licence’ tab where you can upload the business licence. Once you have uploaded the document, the file name and upload date will be updated. 
  • Pharmacy Manager: Click on the pharmacy’s name to access the Pharmacy Portal. Once you are in the Pharmacy Portal, review the pharmacy information on each tab and click the ‘Next’ button to advance to the ‘Business Licence’ tab where you can upload the business licence. Once you have uploaded the document, the file name and upload date will be updated.

For further instruction on uploading a business licence, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

My municipality does not issue a business licence. How do I complete this requirement for renewal?

If your pharmacy or telepharmacy is located in a jurisdiction that does not issue a business licence, you should provide a letter or correspondence from the jurisdiction which confirms that they do not issue a business licence. You should upload the document in place of the business licence on eServices.

For further information on the business licence requirements, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

When can I submit my pharmacy renewal application?

You may submit the pharmacy licence renewal requirements once you receive your pharmacy renewal notice approximately 75 days before the pharmacy licence expiry date. You will not have access to submit the renewal requirements prior to receiving the renewal notice. You may prepare for renewal in advance by compiling any ownership documents required and ensuring your business licence meets all requirements.

For further information on what is required for pharmacy renewal, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide .

What are the requirements for renewal?

The pharmacy licence renewal requirements vary depending on the type of ownership of your pharmacy. Most pharmacies in B.C. are owned by corporations and are required to submit the following:

  • Ownership documents
  • A copy of the current business licence issued by the municipality (if applicable)
  • Proof of Eligibility from each Indirect Owner and the pharmacy manager
  • Payment of the renewal fee

This checklist will provide details regarding the above requirements.

If your pharmacy is not owned by a corporation (i.e. hospital, university, sole proprietor, etc.), the renewal requirements will differ slightly.

For further information on renewal requirements, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

How can I track the status of my pharmacy licence renewal application? Is there a way for me to see which of my Indirect Owners has not submitted a requirement?

The status of the pharmacy licence renewal application can be tracked on eServices by either the Authorized Representative(s) or the pharmacy manager. Indirect Owners of the pharmacy will not be able to track the renewal status, or see the status of their Proof of Eligibility. Indirect Owners should reach out to their Authorized Representative(s) if they have questions about the renewal status of a pharmacy. The steps taken to access this information on eServices by the Authorized Representative(s) or pharmacy manager are different depending on your role(s). However, note that only the Authorized Representative(s) of the pharmacy can see who has and has not submitted their attestation and/or Criminal Record History (CRH).

  • Authorized Representative: Log into eServices and go to ‘My Pharmacies’. Scroll down and expand the list of pharmacies by clicking on the ‘+’ sign next to the name of the Direct Owner. Once you have expanded the list of pharmacies owned by that Direct Owner, scroll down the list to find the pharmacy due for renewal. Next to the pharmacy name, you will see the status of the attestation, CRH, business licence, and payment. The status of the ownership information will be listed next to the name of the Direct Owner. To view the detailed list of Indirect Owners, click on the ‘Pending’ link under the Renewal Complete column. This detailed list will display all of the Indirect Owners and whether or not they have submitted their attestation and/or CRH. This list does not disclose the eligibility status of the attestation and CRH.
  • Pharmacy Manager: Log into eServices and go to ‘My Pharmacies’. Scroll down to the pharmacy summary at the bottom of the page. This summary will provide the status of the ownership information, attestation, CRH, business licence, and payment. Note that only the Authorized Representative(s) of a pharmacy are able see a detailed view of which Indirect Owners have submitted their attestation or Criminal Record History (CRH). 

Note: the ‘Attestation Summary’ and ‘CRH Summary’ statuses refers to the status of all attestations and Criminal Record History results required for the pharmacy renewal application. If one or more individuals has not submitted their attestation and/or CRH, the ‘Attestation Summary’ and/or ‘CRH Summary’ column status will show as ‘Pending’, regardless of whether you have personally submitted this information.

For further explanation of each renewal status, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Who is responsible for submitting the requirements for a pharmacy licence renewal application?

The Authorized Representative(s) is responsible for ensuring that all renewal requirements are submitted before the deadline and will have access to submit most of this information. However, all Indirect Owners (if applicable) and the pharmacy manager will have to submit Proof of Eligibility as part of the renewal application. The pharmacy manager will also have access to submit a copy of the current business licence.

The renewal status can be monitored by the Authorized Representative(s) and the pharmacy manager on their eServices account. The Indirect Owners of the pharmacy will not be able to track the renewal status, or see the status of their Proof of Eligibility. Indirect Owners should reach out to their Authorized Representative(s) if they have questions about the renewal status of a pharmacy.

For further details on tracking the renewal status can be found in the ‘How can I track the status of my pharmacy renewal application?’ FAQ.​

What are my responsibilities as a pharmacy manager for the pharmacy licence renewal?

As the pharmacy manager, you must complete your Proof of Eligibility and you may also upload a copy of the current business licence. Proof of Eligibility consists of a yearly attestation and a Criminal Record History (CRH) which must be submitted once every 5 years. The business licence may be uploaded by either the pharmacy manager or Authorized Representative(s). As the manager, you should discuss with your Authorized Representative(s) who will be responsible for uploading the business licence on eServices before the due date.

Ensuring the submission of all other renewal requirements is the responsibility of the Authorized Representative(s) of the Direct Owner(s).  

For further information about pharmacy renewal, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

When is the deadline to submit the pharmacy licence renewal application?

All requirements must be received by the College no later than 30 days before the pharmacy licence expiry date. If the College has not received the requirements on or before the 30 day deadline, the pharmacy licence renewal application will be referred to the Application Committee for review and an administrative fee may be applied.

For further information on pharmacy renewal, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What happens if I do not submit all of the requirements by the renewal deadline (30 days before the pharmacy licence expires)?

Failure to submit all of the renewal requirements: ownership information, Proof of Eligibility (attestation & CRH) from the pharmacy manager and all Indirect Owners (if the Direct Owner is a corporation(s)), a valid business licence (if applicable) and payment, will result in your pharmacy licence renewal application being referred to the Application Committee for review and an administrative fee may be applied. 

For further information on the Application Committee, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What is the Application Committee?

The Application Committee (AC) is a legislative committee established under the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act and Health Professions Act to review any pharmacy licence applications that do not meet the eligibility criteria, are incomplete, or have false or misleading information. The AC may issue, renew or reinstate a pharmacy licence (with or without conditions), or refuse to issue, renew or reinstate a pharmacy licence.

For further information on the Application Committee, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What type of applications are there? What requirements do I have to submit?

In addition to a new pharmacy licence application and renewal application, the Direct Owner needs to notify the College when the following changes to the pharmacy occur. The requirements for each type of application can be found by clicking on the application name below:

Type of Change Details Deadline to Submit
Change of Direct Owner A change in ownership from one legal entity to another (including amalgamation).  Minimum 30 days before the effective date of change.
Change of Indirect Owner A change of directors, officers, and/or shareholders of a non-publicly traded BC corporation.  Minimum 7 days before the effective date of change.
Change of Manager A change in pharmacy manager. Minimum 7 days before the effective date of change.
Change of Corporation Name A change in the name of the corporation, which can be either a direct or indirect owner of a pharmacy. Recommended 7 days before effective date of change.
Change of Operating Name A change in the pharmacy name. Minimum 30 days before the effective date of change.
Change of Location A change in the location of the pharmacy. Minimum 30 days before the effective date of change.
Change in Layout A change in the layout of the pharmacy. Minimum 30 days before the effective date of change.
Pharmacy Closure A permanent closure of the pharmacy. Minimum 30 days before the effective date of change.

The College is considered to have received notification once a change application is received. All applications should be sent to licensure@bcpharmacists.org.

For further information on the different change applications, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Who can submit a pharmacy application?

The Authorized Representative(s) of the Direct Owner of a pharmacy will be responsible for submitting licensure applications. For example, the Authorized Representative(s) of a pharmacy owned by a corporation will be the director(s) of the Direct Owner. Officers, shareholders, and pharmacy managers are not able to submit change applications.

For further information on each pharmacy application, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

How do I submit a Change of Manager application? As the pharmacy manager can I submit the change request?

A Change of Manager application must be submitted through eServices by one of the Authorized Representative(s) of the pharmacy. The current pharmacy manager will not have access to make this change (unless they are also an Authorized Representative of the pharmacy). A manager change request must be submitted at least 7 days before the effective date to allow the new manager time to complete his/her Proof of Eligibility (attestation and Criminal Record History). The manager change will not be completed until the College receives the new manager’s Proof of Eligibility.

Authorized Representative(s) can follow the instructions in the Pharmacy Licensure Guide to submit a Change of Manager application on eServices.

When should I submit my change application? How much notice do I need to give the College?

Pursuant to section 4(d) of the Pharmacy Operations General Regulation, the College must be notified as follows:

“(a)at least 7 days before a manager ceases to manage a pharmacy;
(b)at least 30 days before the location of a pharmacy changes;
(c)at least 30 days before a direct owner changes;
(d)at least 7 days before an indirect owner changes;
(e)on becoming aware that a direct owner has ceased to be eligible, under section 3 of the Act, to hold a pharmacy licence.”

Additionally, pursuant to section 4.1(3) of the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act (PODSA):

“a direct owner must give to the registrar 30 days' written notice of any changes respecting the name or layout of the pharmacy.”

Pursuant to section 18(8)(d) of the PODSA Bylaws, a pharmacy closure application must be submitted at least thirty days before the effective date of proposed closure.

Failure to submit an application within the correct timeline may lead to a delay in the application process or referral to the Application Committee.

A summary of the prescribed timelines for all pharmacy applications can be found in the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

My pharmacy will be undergoing multiple changes in the near future (e.g. I am changing the operating name and the layout of a pharmacy). What should I do?

If your pharmacy is undergoing multiple changes, you must submit all appropriate change applications. For example, a pharmacy that is planning to undergo renovations and is also changing the pharmacy name would submit both a Change of Layout application as well as a Change of Operating Name application. Note that applications have different notification periods and processing times which should be adhered to. For further details on application processing times, refer to the ‘What type of applications are there? What requirements do I have to submit?’ FAQ . Failure to provide enough notice to the College may result in a delay in processing or referral to the Application Committee.

For further information on submitting multiple change applications, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I am planning to make the same change (e.g. changing the Direct Owner, corporate name, etc.) for all pharmacies owned by my corporation. How should I notify the College?

If the same change applies to multiple pharmacies, you have two options to complete the change application for all applicable pharmacies:

  1. Submit a change application for each pharmacy affected by the same change.
  2. Submit a change application for one pharmacy and use Form 9: Pharmacy Licensure – Multiple Pharmacies to list all other pharmacies impacted by the same change.

For further information, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

The College recently completed an inspection at my pharmacy and identified that there was a Change in Layout of the pharmacy which was not reported to the College. What process should I follow to rectify this?

Pursuant to section 4.1(3) of the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act, a Direct Owner must give the Registrar 30 days' written notice of any changes respecting the layout of the pharmacy.

To comply with this provision, you must complete and submit the following to the Licensure Department by email at licensure@bcpharmacists.org:

All required documents and more information about the Change in Layout application process can be found on the College website, or in the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

How long will it take to process my pharmacy application?

Typically the processing time for each phase of an application is 7 days. Some of the change applications have multiple phases which will add to the processing time. An application submitted without all the requirements may result in a delay in processing.

For further information on the timeline of each application, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I am relocating my pharmacy, when can I operate in the new location?

The Change of Location application must be completed before the pharmacy can operate in a new location. Pursuant to section 6(1)(b) of the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act, a pharmacy licence is cancelled if the location of the pharmacy changes. If the new location is open before a new licence is issued by the College, the pharmacy will be operating unlawfully.

For further information on the Change of Location process, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Where can I find the invoice for my pharmacy licence renewal application?

Only the Authorized Representative(s) have access to view invoices and submit payment for a pharmacy licence renewal. In the ‘My Pharmacies’ section of eServices, click on the name of the Direct Owner (owner of the pharmacy). Once you have submitted the ownership requirements, you will land on the payment page. This page will have a ‘Print Invoice’ option that will print a list of all pharmacies due for renewal within the chosen month.

For further information regarding printing the invoice, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Where can I find my pharmacy licence?

The pharmacy licence can be downloaded by any Authorized Representative(s) or the pharmacy manager from the Pharmacy Portal. To access the Pharmacy Portal, log into eServices, go to ‘My Pharmacies’ and scroll to the bottom of the page. At this point, you may have one of two views depending on your role(s): 

  • Authorized Representative: Click the '+' sign next to the name of the Direct Owner, and then the pharmacy name. On the next page you will see the 'Download Pharmacy Licence' button.
  • Pharmacy Manager: Click on the pharmacy name. On the next page you will see the 'Download Pharmacy Licence' button.

For further instructions on how to download the pharmacy licence, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Do I have to report a change in pharmacy hours?

Yes, pursuant to the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act Bylaws, the pharmacy hours, both when a pharmacist is on and off duty, must be reported to the College. This change can be reported by either the Authorized Representative(s) or the pharmacy manager in the Pharmacy Portal. To access the Pharmacy Portal, log into eServices, go to ‘My Pharmacies’ and scroll to the bottom of the page. At this point, you may have one of two views depending on your role(s):

  • Authorized Representative: Click the '+' sign next to the name of the Direct Owner, and then the pharmacy name. On the next page you must click ‘Next’ at the bottom of both the ‘Profile’ and ‘Staff’ pages to access the ‘Services’ page. You may edit the start or end time by selecting the correct time in the dropdown menu on the corresponding day of the week. To save changes, click the ‘Next’ button once all hours have been updated.
  • Pharmacy Manager: Click on the pharmacy name. On the next page you must click ‘Next’ at the bottom of both the ‘Profile’ and ‘Staff’ pages to access the ‘Services’ page. You may edit the start or end time by selecting the correct time in the dropdown menu on the corresponding day of the week. To save changes, click the ‘Next’ button once all hours have been updated.

For further information on updating the pharmacy hours, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

As the pharmacy manager, how do I update the pharmacy staff roster?

In order to update the roster, login to eServices, click on ‘My Pharmacies’, and then the name of the pharmacy. Once in the pharmacy portal, click the ‘Next’ button to access the staff roster. Use the ‘Add’, ‘Edit’, and ‘Delete’ buttons to update the staff roster.

Pursuant to section 18(2)(c) of the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act Bylaws, a manager must notify the Registrar in writing of the appointments and resignations of registrant’s as they occur by updating the pharmacy staff roster in eServices.

For further information regarding updates to the staff roster, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

How do I complete my Proof of Eligibility?

Proof of Eligibility (POE) can be completed by logging into eServices, clicking 'My Profile' > 'Proof of Eligibility'. Complete the information on each of the pages, clicking ‘Next’ at the bottom of each page to navigate through the tabs. If applicable, the last tab provides instructions to complete the Criminal Record History (CRH) portion of the POE. The CRH will be completed on a third party site, and it may take up to 7 days for the College to receive the result. You will only have to complete a CRH once every 5 years. Once you have completed your POE, click the ‘Close’ button.

Note: POE must be completed on a desktop computer using one of the recommended browsers: Google Chrome or Internet Explorer.

For further information on Proof of Eligibility, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

How often do I have to complete my Proof of Eligibility?

Proof of Eligibility consists of both an attestation and Criminal Record History (CRH). The attestation must be completed annually for each pharmacy, or when an individual takes on a new role within the pharmacy. The CRH must be completed once every five years.

Note that the CRH is not the same as the Criminal Record Check (CRC) that is completed by registrants of the College. All owners who are registered pharmacists as well as the pharmacy manager must also continue to undergo the separate CRC process to maintain their registration with the College.

For further information on Proof of Eligibility, refer to the College website, or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What is a Criminal Record History (CRH) and why is it required?

CRH involves a search of criminal record history information in the databases of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and local police stations to determine whether the eligibility criteria to hold a pharmacy licence is met. Specifically, pursuant to the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act (PODSA), “no direct owner, indirect owner or manager has, within the previous 6 years, been convicted of an offence under the Criminal Code (Canada)”.

If this eligibility requirement is not met by owners and managers, the pharmacy application will be referred to the Application Committee (AC) for review. After reviewing the pharmacy application, the AC may request additional information or evidence and may then issue, renew, or reinstate the pharmacy licence with or without conditions, or refuse to issue, renew, or reinstate the pharmacy licence.

The CRH search will be conducted by the Board-approved external vendor, Sterling Backcheck, a professional private criminal record check provider that partners with local police stations to provide results.

For further information on Criminal Record History, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I have completed my Criminal Record History (CRH) with Sterling Backcheck using instructions provided by the College. How do I share my results with the College? When will the College receive my results?

The CRH results will be sent directly from Sterling Backcheck to the College. Note that although you may have already received your results, it can take up to 7 days for the College to receive this information. Please do not send your results to the College; we only accept this information directly from Sterling Backcheck.

For further information on Criminal Record History results, please refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I have submitted my attestation and Criminal Record History (CRH). How can I check to make sure I’ve completed my Proof of Eligibility?

Only Authorized Representative(s) of the pharmacy may check who has submitted their Proof of Eligibility on eServices. Indirect Owner(s) and the pharmacy manager can either contact an Authorized Representative to confirm that their attestation and Criminal Record History (CRH) have been submitted, or they may contact the Licensure Department via email at licensure@bcpharmacists.org. Note that the Licensure Department will not disclose the eligibility status of the Indirect Owner(s) or pharmacy manager.

Authorized Representative(s) may follow the instructions below to access the Proof of Eligibility information:

  • Authorized Representative: Log into eServices and go to ‘My Pharmacies’. Scroll down and expand the list of pharmacies by clicking on the ‘+’ sign next to the name of the Direct Owner. Once you have expanded the list of pharmacies owned by that Direct Owner, scroll down the list to find the pharmacy due for renewal. This initial list view will provide the status of the ownership documents, attestation, CRH, business licence, and payment. To view the detailed list of Indirect Owners, click on the ‘Pending’ link under the Renewal Complete column. This detailed list will display all of the Indirect Owners and pharmacy manager, and whether or not they have submitted their attestation and/or CRH. This list does not disclose the eligibility status of the attestation and CRH.

For further information regarding the status of your pharmacy renewal, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I am a registrant with the College and have completed a Criminal Record Check (CRC) during my registration renewal. Why do I have to submit a Criminal Record History (CRH)? What is the difference between the two checks?

All registered pharmacists and pharmacy technicians currently undergo a CRC through the Criminal Records Review Program (CRRP) as required under the Health Professions Act (HPA) at the time of initial registration and at least every 5 years thereafter at the time of registration renewal. This check does not provide the level of comprehensiveness which is provided by the CRH which is required under the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act (PODSA). The CRRP is also specific to registrants and does not provide a means for the Criminal Record History of non-registrants to be checked.

The College cannot use the same CRC under the CRRP for the pharmacy licensing process since it does not meet the CRH requirements included in PODSA.

All Direct and Indirect Owners and managers must submit a CRH as part of the licensure process. All owners who are registered pharmacists and managers must continue to undergo the separate CRC process to maintain their registration with the College.

For further information on the differences between CRC and CRH, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Who can I speak with at the College if I have questions or concerns regarding the privacy and confidentiality of my Criminal Record History (CRH) information?

The Privacy Officer at the College is responsible for ensuring compliance with the appropriate privacy legislation and can be reached at privacy@bcpharmacists.org. The College collects, uses, and discloses personal information in accordance with BC’s Health Professions Act (HPA), Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act (PODSA), Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) and other applicable legislation. The College is committed to protecting your privacy and applies best practices in doing so.

For further information regarding privacy considerations, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Which applications require submission of a pharmacy diagram? What are the pharmacy diagram requirements and what scale should it be drawn to?

A pharmacy diagram must be submitted for the following change applications:

You must ensure that the diagram is professionally drawn to scale of ¼ inch equals 1 foot. All pharmacies must show that they meet the physical requirements set out in the PODSA bylaws. The diagram checklist (Community or Hospital) will provide a list of all requirements. A diagram that is not drawn to scale or is missing requirements may cause a delay in the application process.

For further information on pharmacy diagrams, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

How do I complete my pre-opening/change of layout inspection report?

The pre-opening inspection report must be completed as part of the New Pharmacy, Change of Layout, and Change of Location applications. Both items must be submitted:

  1. Pre-Opening Inspection Report
  2. Supporting Digital Evidence in the form of photos or videos

Appendix B in the Pharmacy Licensure Guide provides recommended content for digital evidence. If completing a New Pharmacy application or Change of Location application, you must provide digital evidence for all items. If you are submitting a Change of Layout application, complete up to the Security section only.

For further information on the pre-opening inspection, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

How do I submit photos or video for my pre-opening inspection?

Pre-opening inspections require supporting digital evidence to show your pharmacy meets the requirements for licensure. Digital evidence (photos/videos) may be submitted to the College via email at licensure@bcpharmacists.org using the PowerPoint template provided by the College or by uploading the digital evidence to a file sharing service such as Google Drive, One Drive, or Dropbox and sharing a link to the folder if the file is too large to transmit via email.

Appendix B in the Pharmacy Licensure Guide provides recommended content for digital evidence on each requirement in the pre-opening inspection report.

For further information on digital evidence, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What are some tips for producing the digital evidence?

Digital evidence (photos/videos) is required to show that your pharmacy has met all the physical requirements and that they adhere to the PODSA bylaws.  Photos should be taken from a few different angles/distances to provide context. A close-up photo of a physical requirement may not be sufficient; therefore you may need to step back 5-6 feet in order to put the physical requirement in context of its surroundings.

Delays in approving digital evidence are usually due to the following:

  • Digital evidence was not provided for all physical requirements
  • Context was not provided and the College cannot confirm compliance
  • A physical requirement does not meet all descriptive requirements outlined in the PODSA bylaws

Appendix B in the Pharmacy Licensure Guide provides recommended content for digital evidence. If completing a New Pharmacy application or Change of Location application, you must provide digital evidence for all items. If you are submitting a Change of Layout application, complete up to the Security section only.

For further information on digital evidence, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

My pharmacy is relocating, how do I submit photos to demonstrate compliance when I can’t move my equipment until the day of the move?

A pharmacy that is changing location must meet all of the requirements outlined in the pre-opening inspection report prior to moving into the new pharmacy. The College recognizes that some equipment may still be in use up until the day of the move such as computer terminals, equipment, time-delay safe, fridge, etc. In this case, take photos of the equipment in the existing location and submit a photo showing where the equipment will be placed in the new pharmacy using placeholders. Additional photos may be requested after the move to confirm the final layout of the equipment matches the pharmacy diagram submitted.

What is a Central Securities Register and how do I obtain one?

A company/corporation must maintain a Central Securities Register (CSR) in accordance with the requirements in the Business Corporations Act. This document lists the shareholders of the corporation. You can obtain this document from either the lawyer or law firm who incorporated your company, or from the individual who is responsible for maintaining this document within your corporation. This document must include: all shares issued by a company, the name and last known address of each shareholder, and the number, class and any series of any shares owned by that shareholder. This document must be certified by a lawyer or notary before being submitted to the College.

For further information on the Central Securities Register, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

Can I submit a Register of Directors instead of the Central Securities Register?

No. The Register of Directors only lists the directors and officers of a corporation. In order to validate the names of the shareholders (Indirect Owners) within the corporation, the College requires the certified Central Securities Register which lists the shareholders.

For further information on the Central Securities Register, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I am purchasing/selling a pharmacy. What should I do?

The process of purchasing or selling a pharmacy is considered a Change of Direct Owner. This application is submitted to the College by the new Direct Owner of the pharmacy (i.e., the purchaser). However, the current Direct Owner of the pharmacy (i.e., the seller), must confirm the change by signing the application form. The new Direct Owner must submit a Change of Direct Owner application and all applicable requirements to the College at least 30 days before the effective date of change. If updated corporate documents are unavailable 30 days prior to the change, the Deferred Submission of a Required Document(s) for Change Application form must be submitted with the Change of Direct Owner application.

For further information on a Change of Direct Owner application, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What are the differences between a Change of Direct Owner and a Change of Corporation Name?

A Change of Direct Owner occurs when a pharmacy is sold from one entity to another. This also includes amalgamation. A Change of Corporation Name occurs when the corporation that currently owns the pharmacy changes in name only. One way to distinguish the difference is that a Change of Direct Owner will result in a new incorporation number, whereas a Change of Corporation Name will result in the incorporation number staying the same.  

For further information, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What is the difference between a Direct Owner (DO) and an Indirect Owner (IO)?

The name of the Direct Owner of the pharmacy is printed on the current pharmacy licence. In most cases, the Direct Owner of the pharmacy is a corporation.  Indirect Owners of the pharmacy are the directors, officers, and shareholders of this Direct Owner corporation and/or any other corporations related to the ownership structure of this pharmacy. Indirect Owners can be individuals (pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, or non-registrants), or corporations.

  • Directors: individuals identified on the Notice of Articles or BC Company Summary, issued by BC Registry Services. The majority of directors of the Direct Owner must be pharmacists. If the directors of a corporation change, you must submit a Change of Indirect Owner application, and the Notice of Change of Directors issued by BC Registry Services.
  • Officers: individuals identified on the BC Company Summary or Annual Report issued by BC Registry Services. If the officers of a corporation change, you must submit a Change of Indirect Owner application, and the updated BC Company Summary issued by BC Registry Services.
  • Shareholders: any individual or corporation that holds shares of the Direct Owner or Indirect Owner who is identified on the Central Securities Register of a non-publicly traded corporation. If the shareholders of a corporation change, you must submit a Change of Indirect Owner application and an updated certified copy of the Central Securities Register.

Note: If a shareholder is a non-publicly traded corporation, the directors, officers, and shareholders of this corporation are also considered Indirect Owners.

For further information on pharmacy ownership, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

What happens if my corporation undergoes an amalgamation?

Amalgamating is the process where two or more corporations merge and carry on as one corporation, the "amalgamated corporation". The “amalgamated corporation” is a new legal entity, regardless of whether the “amalgamated corporation” has the same name or people as any of the “amalgamating corporations”. If the Direct Owner of a pharmacy amalgamates, you must submit a Change of Direct Owner application. An amalgamation is considered a Change of Direct Owner because the “amalgamated corporation” is a new legal entity which has a new BC Incorporation Number.

For further information regarding a Change of Direct Owner application, refer to the College website or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

My pharmacy is currently undergoing renewal, but I am selling the pharmacy. Should I complete the renewal process or submit a change application? Are the renewal fees refundable?

To maintain a pharmacy licence, either the new Direct Owner must complete the Change of Direct Owner application and its requirements before the existing pharmacy licence expires, OR the current Direct Owner must renew the pharmacy licence before it expires. If the Change of Direct Owner application will not be completed before the pharmacy licence expires, the current Direct Owner should renew the pharmacy licence first. The new Direct Owner can submit the Change of Direct Owner application when the sale is confirmed. If the Change of Direct Owner application is not completed and the current Direct Owner did not renew the pharmacy licence before it expires, the pharmacy must remain closed. The new Direct Owner will then have to apply for a New Pharmacy Licence by following the New Pharmacy Licence process outlined in the Pharmacy Licensure Guide. All licensing fees are non-refundable.

Note: If the current Direct Owner will not be renewing the pharmacy licence, the new Direct Owner must inform the College of the Change of Direct Owner by submitting the Change of Direct Owner application before the pharmacy renewal deadline, i.e., 30 days before the licence expires. If all requirements for the pharmacy renewal application are not submitted before the deadline, and the College has not been informed of the Change of Direct Owner via an application, then the renewal is considered late and will be referred to the Application Committee for review and an administrative fee may be applied. 

For further information regarding a Change of Direct Owner application, refer to the College website, or the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I only hold non-voting shares of the Direct Owner or corporation associated with the ownership of a pharmacy. Am I still considered an Indirect Owner and required to submit Proof of Eligibility?

Yes, all shareholders, regardless of the type or number of shares they hold, are considered Indirect Owners of the pharmacy and must submit Proof of Eligibility for all applicable applications.

For further information on Indirect Owners and pharmacy ownership, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I’m not a registered pharmacist in BC. Can I own a pharmacy?

Yes, non-pharmacists may have ownership of a pharmacy. However, the majority of directors of the Direct Owner must be pharmacists registered in BC. In order to meet the majority requirement, more than 50% of the directors must be pharmacists (regardless of who has the majority of shares within the corporation).

Note: All Direct Owners and Indirect Owners must also comply with the eligibility criteria outlined in the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act. One of the criteria to hold a pharmacy licence is that “a person authorized by an enactment to prescribe drugs must not be a Direct Owner or an Indirect Owner.”

For further information on pharmacy ownership, refer to the Pharmacy Licensure Guide.

I just had a Criminal Record History done for my pharmacy licence renewal application (as I am the manager/indirect owner of a pharmacy). Do I have to complete another CRC for the College?

Yes, the Criminal Record Check (CRC) required for your registrant renewal is different from the Criminal Record History (CRH) for your pharmacy renewal.  They are required for different purposes under two different pieces of legislation. 

The Criminal Record History (CRH) is required for all pharmacy managers and direct/indirect owners of a pharmacy for pharmacy license applications under the Pharmacy Operations and Drug Scheduling Act. The CRH is processed by Sterling Backcheck, results are sent to the College and reviewed by the College's Application Committee, if required.

The Criminal Codes reviewed for the CRC and CRH are not the same, and therefore, are not interchangeable. The CRC is specific to registrants and is not applicable to pharmacy owners that are not registrants.   As such, all direct and indirect owners and managers must submit a CRH as part of the licensure process.