Lower Mainland Regulated Pharmacy Technician update
On October 26, 2015 HEU met with Fraser Health Authority representatives to review the status of transitioning Lower Mainland Regulated Pharmacy Technicians to a new pharmacy services model.
The union provided the employer with some ideas about how to minimize the disruption to HEU’s affected members. However, no agreements were reached during the meeting. HEU plans to continue these discussions at the next meeting scheduled in February 2016.
Due to regulatory changes introduced by the College of Pharmacists of BC and approved by the Ministry of Health, use of the job title “pharmacy technician” was restricted as of January 1, 2011 to those who met specific educational criteria.
HEU negotiated agreements to ensure existing staff in pharmacy receive resources and opportunities (through the FBA Education Fund) to convert to a “regulated” designation by upgrading their skills through the bridging program.
Upon completion, and after registering with the College of Pharmacists, members have been able to remain in their existing position without displacement or reposting, and have been able to receive the new higher rate of pay (grid 32).
For members who have completed the bridging program, the final deadline for registration with the College of Pharmacists of BC is December 31, 2015.
The employer advised the union that as of October 26, about 75 per cent of pharmacy assistant/technician staff are regulated. The employer’s goal is to have approximately 83 per cent of pharmacy assistant/tech staff regulated.
The employer advises that the College of Pharmacists is currently reviewing the scope of duties which both pharmacy assistants and regulated pharmacy technicians can perform, and that final numbers on those who have become regulated through the bridging program should be available by January 2016.