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NAPRA updates Model Standards

August 25, 2009

Updated Model Standards of Practice for Canadian Pharmacists(MSOP) have just been released by the National Association of Pharmacy Regulatory Authorities (NAPRA). The MSOP are not applicable only to pharmacists at entry to practice.The MSOP are minimum standards of practice that all licensed pharmacists must meet. 

The new standards reflect the increasing importance of standards of practice for health care professionals in response to shifting and overlapping scopes of practice and emphasis on accountability of professionals throughout their careers.

The Model Standards of Practice were redrafted to select specific, measurable activities from the 2007 Competencies for Canadian Pharmacists at Entry to Practice that are key both to protecting the public and to safe and effective pharmacist practice. In addition, in recognition of the rapidly changing scope of pharmacy practice in Canada, the MSOP have incorporated pharmacists’ activities that are currently authorized in a number of Canadian provinces but that were not specified as part of the patient care competency in NAPRA’s 2007 Competencies.

The MSOP are written primarily for pharmacy regulatory authorities with the goal of specifying the standards against which pharmacists’ performance can be judged. Regulators will also use these MSOP to explain the responsibilities of pharmacists to their stakeholders.

NAPRA acknowledges that there are a number of professional roles fulfilled by pharmacists as drawn from the 2007 Professional Competencies. These roles can be categorized into:

  • patient care
  • drug information
  • drug distribution
  • management
  • education

NAPRA recognizes that not all pharmacists perform each of the roles as part of their daily work. For example, pharmacists may provide patient care and yet not be involved in the distribution of medications or pharmacy management. However, regardless of a pharmacist’s position or practice context, it is NAPRA’s intention that when pharmacists do perform a specific role, then they must perform it to the level specified in the standards. Furthermore, when performing a specific role, the pharmacists must meet all of the MSOP associated with this role.

Originally published in the August 25, 2009, issue of The Link