The drug programs department consists of two streams:
- The Prescription Review Program (PRP) is an educational and remedial program, which assists physicians with the challenging task of prescribing opioids, benzodiazepines, stimulants and other potentially addictive medications with appropriate caution. The work of the program is informed by the PharmaNet database.
- The Methadone Maintenance Program makes recommendations to Health Canada regarding physicians obtaining authorizations to prescribe methadone under section 56 of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. The College administers three streams: maintenance, analgesia, and hospitalist authorizations. In addition, it can recommend temporary authorizations of up to 60 days.
News from drug programs
- College Connector Volume 4 | No. 6 | November/December 2016
- Suboxone® (buprenorphine-naloxone)
- News Release | July 6, 2016: New guideline for prescribing methadone and buprenorphine released
- News Release | July 4, 2016: Important notice regarding Suboxone®
- News Release | June 6, 2016
- College Connector Volume 4 | No. 2 | March / April 2016
- How well do you really know your patient? When prescribing controlled medication, be prepared to ask them more questions than you think.
- College Connector Volume 4 | No. 1 | January / February 2016
- Benzodiazepines are not as helpful as originally thought.
- Need a consult in a hurry? Try RACE.
- College Connector Volume 3 | No. 6 | November / December 2015
- Access to PharmaNet is more than a best practice
- College Connector Volume 2 | No. 2 | March / April 2014
- As the population ages, so does the number of “snowbirds.” How do they still get their medication when they are away?
- Take Home Naloxone saves lives
- What constitutes a wet signature?
- College Connector Volume 2 | No. 1 | January / February 2014
- What are the requirements for a valid prescription?
- Z drugs don’t result in extra ZZZZZs in the long-term.
- Methadose should be on the Methadone prescription pad. All others go on the regular duplicate.
Prescription Pad Reorder Forms Overdose Prevention and Response Training
Toward the Heart is a provincial harm reduction initiative designed to equip members of the public to respond in case of an opioid overdose.
Physicians should consider providing patients who may be at risk of overdose with naloxone. The BC Centre for Disease Control has a Take Home Naloxone Program, which provides information to health-care workers and the public. There is also an Overdose Survival Guide which can be provided directly to patients, their friends and families.
For more information about the program or to find the nearest training site, visit the Toward the Heart website.
Naloxone now available in BC without a prescription
Naloxone is now available outside of pharmacies without a prescription. It is important that anyone administering naloxone call 9-1-1 first, and be aware that naloxone may cause withdrawal symptoms for the patient. Family and friends should be adequately instructed on how to recognize the signs of overdose, how to administer naloxone, and how to monitor the patient’s progress until help arrives.
For more information and resources regarding naloxone, visit the College of Pharmacists of BC website.
RACE Rapid Access to Consultative Expertise
RACE was created to enhance patient care and provide timely treatment advice. Easier access to the specialist reduces wait times or eliminates the need for referral, and can triage utilization of walk-in or emergency department services. The family physician or nurse practitioner may phone the RACE line and either speak to a specialist immediately, or receive a return call within two hours.
RACE is available in the following regions:
- Vancouver Coastal/PHC
RACE local calls: 604-696-2131
Toll free: 1-877-696-2131
- Fraser Valley RACE
South Island RACE
Kootenay Boundary RACE
Toll free: 1-844-365-7223
Toll free: 1-855-605-7223
For more information, visit the RACE website.
Prescribing in Postgraduate Medical Education Training Program
Requests for prescription privileges are submitted to the UBC Posgraduate Medical Education dean’s office by program administrators on the behalf of their trainees. Requests are reviewed by the dean’s Office and submitted to the College for processing.