Doctors visit not required for prescriptions refill during pandemic

Getting your prescriptions

As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, regulations around prescription have been altered. 

People are no longer required to visit their doctor to refill their prescription in most cases.

"The Provincial Health Officer has suggested that pharmacies can use their judgement and the options available to them to reduce non-essential physicians visits, including those for prescription renewals. This may require pharmacists to act with broader latitude than they do normally," reads a statement on the BC College of Pharmacists website.

BC Pharmacists say they are "committed to remaining available to patients" during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Although pharmacists remain committed to providing patients with their medications, they must still follow existing regulations to do so.

A patient must already be taking the medication or already have an existing prescription. A patient cannot receive a new medication without a previous prescription from a doctor. A patient with an expired prescription can have it filled by a pharmacist, who will work with the patient to determine an appropriate supply.

Arrangements can also be made to have another person pick up your medication for you.

Patients who have run out of their medication are encouraged to call ahead to ensure they can provide the additional supply at that time and should not stockpile their medications. In order to ensure everyone is receiving their medications, many pharmacists are not providing more than 30 days worth of supply.

More information can be found here.

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