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In Alberta, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are granted the privilege of self-regulation and professional autonomy through the Health Professions Act. As a regulated health professional, it means that

  • you have met the educational requirements and have demonstrated the entry-to-practice competencies,
  • you are legally responsible and accountable for your work, and
  • you are directly responsible to the public and your healthcare colleagues for maintaining your professional competence.

Patients have a right to assume that a healthcare professional’s practice permit is assurance of current professional competence. Healthcare colleagues want assurance that those with whom they practice are current and competent. For these reasons, the Health Professions Act requires that Council establish a Continuing Competence Program to ensure health professionals fulfil their professional responsibility of maintaining competence.

Maintaining competence is a professional responsibility and the hallmark of self-regulated professionals. In this context, maintenance doesn’t mean staying the same, it means keeping up with (or ahead of) the changes around you.

According to your Code of Ethics, it is your professional responsibility to

  • continuously improve your level of professional knowledge and skill,
  • take responsibility for maintaining a high standard of professional competence,
  • evaluate your individual practice and assume responsibility for improvement, and
  • keep informed about new pharmaceutical knowledge.

According to the professionalism framework, an engaged pharmacy professional who is an active learner

  • seeks out learning opportunities,
  • keeps knowledge and professional skills up to date,
  • maintains current understandings of the healthcare community they practise in (e.g., providers, agencies, policies),
  • regularly self-evaluates and pursues opportunities for development, and
  • embraces change and is committed to learning new things.

ACP has created the Continuing Competence Program (CCP) to help you meet these responsibilities. By identifying appropriate learning activities and implementing that learning into practice, you can continually build your competence and confidence to assure yourself, your patients, and your healthcare colleagues that you are providing quality care throughout your career.