NAPRA’s member organizations regulate the practice of pharmacy and the operation of pharmacies in their respective jurisdictions in Canada.
Pharmacy in Canada is one of many self-regulating professions. This means that the federal and provincial/territorial governments have delegated their authority to regulate certain professions to external bodies, whereby the professions regulate themselves. As a result of this delegation of authority, certain professions, such as pharmacy, medicine and engineering, have the authority and responsibility to establish performance, technical, ethical and educational criteria to guide their profession, and to license individuals and their practice environments. They have a mandate of public protection and they protect the public by ensuring that the established licensure and performance requirements are met or exceeded and for disciplinary actions when the standards are not met.
As a national association for the regulatory bodies for pharmacy, NAPRA’s main purpose is to serve its membership and to act as a resource for the public by providing information and guidance on pharmacy regulation in Canada.
NAPRA has a mandate from its membership to work on their behalf in certain areas such as:
- Creating national model standards and guidelines that its members can in turn adopt or adapt for use in their own jurisdictions. Harmonizing the practice of pharmacy across jurisdictions where possible facilitates the movement of pharmacy professionals across jurisdictions and promotes a consistent level of pharmacy care for patients;
- Engaging in dialogue with federal and other domestic and international government agencies and various health-related professional organizations on behalf of all Canadian pharmacy regulatory authorities;
- Administering programs such as the National Drug Schedules and Pharmacists’ Gateway Canada on behalf of its members; and
- Providing a platform to adopt a national approach in discussing common issues affecting pharmacy practice in Canada.