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Finding a pharmacist job in CanadaFinding a pharmacist job in Canada may be different than in your home country. You may need help finding job vacancies, updating your resume, writing cover letters, preparing for interviews, and understanding what Canadian employers are looking for.

The National Occupational Classification (NOC) is Canada’s reference on occupations. It provides job descriptions, occupational statistics and labour market information.

Credentials recognition

One of the first things you need to do is to find what’s required to work as a pharmacist in Canada. Therefore, after you get your immigrant visa get in touch with the regulatory body that governs the pharmacy profession in the province or territory where you intend to settle in Canada. They will advise you about the required documentation and the fees for assessment. Alternatively, you may contact the National Association of Pharmacy Regulatory Authorities (NAPRA). Take this step before you arrive in Canada.

It’s also important not to rush your application and only do that once you are fully aware of the licensure procedure and the regulatory body’s expectations from you. Regardless of your education or experience, you need to get licensed in Canada to practice as a pharmacist. All regulatory bodies are members of NAPRA, which serves as the national voice for these organizations.

  • You will be required to successfully complete the Pharmacy Examining Board of Canada evaluating examination, in addition to a two-part qualifying examination.
  • Information on the evaluating and qualifying examinations can be obtained from PEBC.
  • You need to gain practical experience in a Canadian pharmacy workplace to get your pharmacist license. The provincial/territorial regulatory body will determine the period of time for the structured practical training that you are required to go through under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist.
  • If you’re immigrating to Quebec, you have to follow the requirements set out by the Ordre des pharmaciens du Quebec.

Credentials assessment services

If you are plan to attend college or university to upgrade your skills, contact the school to find out what steps to take and what credential assessment agency you should use.

World Education Services (WES) – Ontario
International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS) – Alberta
The International Credential Evaluation Service (ICES) – British Columbia

To find more organizations and agencies providing credential evaluation, assessment and qualification recognition services click here. You can also visit the Foreign Credentials Referral Office for information, path-finding and referral services on foreign credential recognition to help internationally trained workers like you succeed and put their skills to work in Canada more quickly.

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Best locations

Pharmacists are listed by the Canadian Government as one of the high-demand occupations in Canada. Employment opportunities for pharmacists are expected to be good for the next few years. While there is a shortage of pharmacists across all of Canada, the shortage is higher in rural areas in general and also some provinces, such as Manitoba. Chances of finding employment are considered to be good in these areas.

Choosing a City

Major employers

The job outlook for the pharmacy profession in Canada is positive. A growing and aging population means more prescriptions are needed to be filled. This creates a greater demand for qualified pharmacists and the positions will be filled by internationally-trained immigrants and Canadian-born graduates.

The number of employers of pharmacists across Canada has also risen over the years as the population continues to expand.The majority of pharmacists in Canada work in the retail trade sector and health care. Pharmacists can be employed by drugstores, hospitals and pharmaceutical firms, but some are self employed and own their own pharmacies.

There is whole new range of career opportunities in homecare operations as well as in grocery stores, big-box retail stores, health management organizations, government and third party insurance payers. Pharmacists  also find employment in the biotech, insurance and pharmaceutical industries (such as in research, marketing or sales).

You can visit the Canada’s Best Diversity Employers website to check for pharmaceutical or healthcare firms which you might be interested in. This special designation recognizes Canada’s best employers for recent immigrants. These employers offer interesting programs to assist new Canadians in making the transition to a new workplace — and a new life in Canada.