Impact of the COVID-19 Controlled Drugs and Substances Act exemption on pharmacist prescribing of opioids, benzodiazepines and stimulants in Ontario

A cross-sectional time-series analysis

The lockdowns and restrictions resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic led to worsening continuity of care in patients receiving any chronic treatment. Health Canada issued an exemption to the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA) in March 2020 allowing pharmacists to act as prescribers of controlled substances to support continuity of care during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This study investigated the utilization of Ontario pharmacist prescribing of opioids, benzodiazepines, and stimulants from January 2019 to December 2021.

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