Reporting a forgery attempt to ACP:
- promotes awareness of recent prescription forgery attempts and forgery tactics;
- helps prevent diversion of drugs, thus maintaining the integrity of the drug system; and
- helps us create a listing of forgery attempts for the calendar year, so that pharmacists and pharmacy technicians have another tool to aid them in forgery detection.
- Your pharmacy name, location, and city
- Date of (attempted) forgery
- “Patient” gender
- What the prescription was written for (including strengths and quantities)
- What the prescription form looked like (TPP, computer-generated, written)
- The prescriber’s name and clinic information printed on the form
- Why you suspected (or how you discovered) a forgery (e.g., signs of alteration, checked Netcare, the form appeared to be a photocopy)
- Whether or not you were able to confirm the forgery with the prescriber
- Any other relevant information
A forged prescription may constitute fraud and/or theft. Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians have a responsibility to act ethically regarding their profession, with honesty and integrity. Reporting forged prescriptions to the police is an important step in working to decrease the number of prescription forgery attempts.
You may disclose health information to a police service without the individual’s consent if you believe that the information relates to the possible commission of an offence under a statute of Alberta or Canada and will either:
- Detect, limit or prevent fraudulent use or abuse of the health system (HIA S.37.1), or
- Protect the health or safety of an individual (HIA S.37.3).
The disclosure must be limited to the following information, any of which may be required by police to complete the investigation:
- The individual’s name, birth date, and personal health number;
- The nature of any injury or illness of the individual;
- The date on which a health service was sought or received;
- The location where the health service was sought or received;
- The name of any drug provided or prescribed to the individual, and the date the drug was provided or prescribed;
- Whether any samples of bodily substances were taken from the individual, or
- Information about the health provider who provided the service.
Document the disclosure on the individual’s record and keep it for at least 10 years.
Please contact your local police or RCMP non-emergency line, as found on their website or in your community phone directory.
Note: according to Health Canada Office of Controlled Substances, all those working with controlled substances and precursor chemicals must take proper security measures. If a theft, loss or forgery occurs it must be reported to the local police immediately and to the Office of Controlled Substances no later than 10 working days after its discovery. To learn more, visit the Controlled Substances Compliance and Monitoring page of the Health Canada website.
To report a forgery to ACP, which will then be shared with other pharmacists across the province via our Forgery Alerts email blast, click here.
To report a forgery to Health Canada's Office of Controlled Substances, click here.
A prescription submitted to a pharmacist or pharmacy technician by a patient becomes the property of the pharmacy. The pharmacist or pharmacy technician has the right to retain the prescription; if a forgery is suspected, the prescription could serve as evidence.
If an irate patient demands the return of an unfilled prescription, the pharmacist or pharmacy technician may choose to return it after stamping and initialling it to indicate that they refused to fill the prescription in question.