The National Pharmacy Technician Bridging Education Program is delivered by educational institutions (local colleges or universities) across Canada. It is available for both in-class or online delivery in both English and French. Online delivery has been centralized through Selkirk College in British Columbia for students from all jurisdictions1. Information about the online program at Selkirk College, including contact information, course scheduling and registration details, is available from the Selkirk College website. Classroom delivery will be provided by educational institutions across the country that have signed an agreement with NAPRA to be an authorized delivery agent. Course and PLAR schedules at the various authorized delivery institutions can be found on the NAPRA website.
Understanding the requirements in your jurisdiction
Before taking any of the Bridging Education Program courses, however, it is important that you understand the requirements in your jurisdiction. You are advised to contact the pharmacy regulatory authority (PRA) in your jurisdiction to determine if and when the Bridging Program is required and if there are any additional requirements that may impact your eligibility or suitability to complete the Bridging Program. In some jurisdictions, there may be time limits or pre-registration requirements that you need to know about first. For example, in some jurisdictions, you must pre-register with the PRA or complete the Pharmacy Examining Board of Canada (PEBC) Evaluating Exam before taking the Bridging Program. Some jurisdictions have set specific deadlines for each step in the registration and licensure process. Please check the requirements posted on the PRA website in your jurisdiction or contact your PRA directly for specific details on registration and licensure requirements, eligibility for bridging and applicable deadlines.
If the requirements for registration and licensure have not been set in your jurisdiction, there is nothing to prevent you from taking the Bridging Program in anticipation. However, there is an element of risk to taking the courses without knowing what the requirements will be in your jurisdiction, as there is no guarantee that doing so will eventually count towards potential future requirements.
Individuals are allowed to take National Pharmacy Technician Bridging Education Program courses simply to further their own knowledge. You may be a pharmacy assistant who wants to take one or more courses as continuing professional development, but may not want to complete all four courses or complete the other steps in the registration and licensure process. This is allowed, as long as you understand that this will not lead to registration or licensure. Should you decide to pursue registration or licensure at a later time, there is no guarantee that you will receive credit towards registration or licensure requirements for courses completed in the past.
If you want to pursue registration or licensure, it is your responsibility to ensure you meet the eligibility criteria and deadlines for Bridging Education in your jurisdiction. The educational institutions will not verify your eligibility prior to enrollment. If you do not take the Bridging Program at the correct point in the registration and licensure process or if you do not meet the eligibility criteria or deadlines in your jurisdiction, you may be required to retake the program or may jeopardize your ability to continue with the registration and licensure process.
Once you have determined that you meet the requirements in your jurisdiction to enrol in Bridging Education, or if you choose to take the courses simply to further your own knowledge, you can then register with one of the authorized delivery agents. You will have to choose between online and classroom delivery and then contact the appropriate educational institution for the course you wish to take. NAPRA’s list of authorized delivery agents and course schedules is updated regularly throughout the year.
Go to Student Guide
If you have any questions regarding registration and licensure requirements, eligibility for bridging and applicable deadlines in your jurisdiction, please contact the PRA in your province or territory.
For questions about the National Pharmacy Technician Bridging Education Program, please contact Theresa Schopf, Manager, Gateway Operations via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via telephone at 613-569-9658, ext. 232.
1 Here and throughout Bridging Program documentation, the term “jurisdiction” is used as a reference to the Canadian provinces, territories and the Canadian Armed Forces - Pharmacy Services Division.