As of July 1, 2020, prescriptions for oral liquids containing codeine must be written on a secure TPP Alberta two-part prescription form. As these products have been moved to Type 1 status by TPP Alberta, prescriptions for oral liquids containing codeine that are written on a standard prescription pad must not be accepted by pharmacy teams.
It should be noted that due to the temporary s56(1) exemption by Health Canada, pharmacists can extend or transfer prescriptions for codeine-containing oral liquids but cannot initiate new orders. As part of the exemption, prescribers can issue verbal orders (e.g., over the phone) for codeine-containing oral liquids.
Pharmacists are also reminded that prescriptions for oral liquids containing codeine written on a standard pad are not valid and must not be “adapted” to codeine tablets to avoid the need for a TPP form. Pharmacists should contact the prescriber and request a verbal order or request that the prescription be provided on a TPP Alberta form.
Drug products currently affected include
- Acetaminophen Elixir with 8 mg Codeine Phosphate syrup,
- pms-Acetaminophen with Codeine Elixir,
- Calmylin ACE,
- Dimetane C Expectorant,
- Dimetapp C,
- Robitussin AC,
- Teva-Cotridin Expectorant,
- Codeine Phosphate Syrup (Laboratoire Atlas Inc.), and
- Linctus Codeine Blanc (Laboratoire Atlas Inc.).
For more on the TPP Alberta program, visit the CPSA website.