For those wanting to go back to Ontario from the UK after obtaining an MPharm degree

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monkeyolsen
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#1
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#1
Hey guys, I'm currently a second year MPharm student at the University of Brighton actually in the middle of exams now, and I'm from Toronto! [EDITED: I am now a registered pharmacist in the UK, and I've also moved back to Canada and done the licensing exams. The law exam and internship are what I have left to do for registration in my province of Ontario]

This is an almost direct copy-paste of my reply to another poster, but I thought I'd set it apart just so it would be easier for people to find

For those people who asked, each province in Canada has at least 1 school of pharmacy, Ontario however has 2 schools, (one at the University of Toronto, and one at the University of Waterloo (which is a co-op program i might add!))

Lately, I've been doing quite a bit of research into what is necessary to return to Ontario (specific to this province, for other provinces it might be different) to practice and here is what I've found out so far.

1) The first thing you need to do is graduate from a pharmacy program.

2) Next you have to get your documents evaluated, this includes your degree certificate, as well as identification information, and statements from schools, regulatory bodies that your are registered with etc. Many of the documents that you need to send at this stage need to be certified (by a lawyer or notary public) and will need to be sent directly from the school (for example) to the Canadian regulatory body)

3) You take the PEBC pharmacist evaluation exam. You have the option of taking this exam in London, UK for an extra fee (something like $365), so if you're thinking of registering in both the UK and in Ontario, then presumably, you can be doing your pre-registration training here while studying for both the Canadian Evaluation Exam, and the UK registration exam at the same time. This exam is kind of like a big review of everything you learned in your 4 years at pharmacy school, and is probably designed to bring you to the same level as Canadian graduates.

4) Once you've passed this Evaluation Exam, there's no time limit within which you do this next exam: the PEBC pharmacist qualifying exam. This exam is split into Part 1 and Part 2. Part 1 is an MCQ paper split over 2 days (around 3.75 hrs each). Part 2 is an OSCE (objective-structured clinical exam) which is kinda like a verbal exam kind of affair. While there's no time limit within which you have to take this exam after the Evaluation Exam, once you've done either Part1 or Part2 of the Qualifying exam, you have 3 years to do the other one.
You get a maximum of 3 attempts at the exam.

If you pass both parts of the exam on your 1st attempt, you are exempted from doing what they call a "bridging program" (which is designed to help you integrate into the Canadian pharmacy workforce, costs around 13k and probably a year of your time)

5) At this stage you can register with the OCP (Ontario College of Pharmacists) to move your application with this regulatory body along.

6) you need to do the Jurisprudence exam for Ontario.

7) you need to complete a studentship/internship, which lasts 6 months (3 months each) in Ontario, but may be shorter or longer in other provinces

8) you might need to do an english proficiency test, but you can appeal this and ask them to waive it.
---------------
This is what I've found out so far, hope it helps.
if you have any questions about anything feel free to let me know. If it's a general question, please post it here, as others may have the same question. If it's personal, you can PM me. If you're planning to go back to Canada for work and want to form a study group a couple years down the road to study for the qualification exams, I wouldn't mind either, so this is a good time to get in touch =)

Edit: forgot to add that if want more info, you should visit the OCP website and the PEBC website. and maybe check out the IPG program at the University of Toronto as well, because I think that may be a requirement as well (once again, I think you can appeal this, the english language exam, as well as shorten the studentship depending on how much work you've done in the UK and other past experience in pharmacy)

Andrew
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firestar101
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#2
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I am not canadian, but I am thinking of going to canada to work as a pharmacist.

Are there lots of pharmacy jobs in canada?
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monkeyolsen
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#3
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(Original post by firestar101)
I am not canadian, but I am thinking of going to canada to work as a pharmacist.

Are there lots of pharmacy jobs in canada?
It really depends where you are planning to go. There are always jobs, it's just a matter of finding them.
I'm sorry if that answer's not helpful, but if you give me more information about what you want to do, then I may be able to give you some more helpful info =)
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CoolDude
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(Original post by monkeyolsen)
It really depends where you are planning to go. There are always jobs, it's just a matter of finding them.
I'm sorry if that answer's not helpful, but if you give me more information about what you want to do, then I may be able to give you some more helpful info =)
Thanks for making this thread OP!

I have +ve rated you.
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kaufmae
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#5
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#5
Hi,
I am a Canadian citizen; I’ve got an offer for Mpharm at Brighton and Keele for this upcoming September. I am considering Brighton, but I was just wondering how you enjoy the program at Brighton. Is it manageable in terms of work load; how’s the student life for an international student from Canada in terms of accommodations and city life. I would be greatly appreciated if you could just give me a few tips.
Thanks so much!
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monkeyolsen
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#6
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I have two cousins from Canada doing MPharm at Keele, and apparently the workload there is pretty high. It is a good school, but from what they tell me, they have one final exam at the end of each year encompassing every single module they have taken that year which seems ridiculous to me, but people still apply there so i guess it must work..

In Brighton, the workload is fair, keep up with your work and you'll have absolutely no problems scoring high marks. The staff there are very accessible and are helpful for the most part. Brighton itself is a nice city to live in, everything is close by. However, it is a small city.
Accomodations are nothing like they are in Canada, the houses here are all old, and if you do find a nice place, usually the rent is pretty high. Depends how much you're willing to pay I guess.
There's a lot of Canadian students at Brighton, and a lot of international students here in general.
If you've done any university at all, you may be able to get some exemptions from certain modules in the first year.

Hope this helps!
Andrew
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Andrew Mooney
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#7
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Hello everyone

I thought I would bump this thread as it's really very interesting.

I've been looking into the possibility of immigrating to Canada, as there are lots of advertisements here in Scotland looking for skilled workers to immigrate to places like the US, Australia, places like that.

Is it fairly common for someone to enter Canada and gain employment as a pharmacist, obviously having completed the requisite qualifications which you mentioned in your OP, and completed the requisiste work experience? It's definitely something I'd be interested in.
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PharmD-aniel
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#8
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Hello Andrew,

Thanks for giving us lots of information! They are all really helpful! I applied the MPharm at King's with my high school and university resuults in Toronto, and I'd love to work in Canada in the future!

However, are all the requirements the same for other provencis like Vancouver? I'm thinking of going to Vancouver rather than Toronto.

UToronto is offering a brand new programme this year - the ultimate Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD)! Do you think we would be disadvantaged or hard to get a job?

Cheers,
Daniel
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monkeyolsen
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#9
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(Original post by Andrew Mooney)
Hello everyone

I thought I would bump this thread as it's really very interesting.

I've been looking into the possibility of immigrating to Canada, as there are lots of advertisements here in Scotland looking for skilled workers to immigrate to places like the US, Australia, places like that.

Is it fairly common for someone to enter Canada and gain employment as a pharmacist, obviously having completed the requisite qualifications which you mentioned in your OP, and completed the requisiste work experience? It's definitely something I'd be interested in.
It'sso common in fact, that they've changed some of the requirements to make it more difficult (not drastically)
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monkeyolsen
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#10
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(Original post by PharmD-aniel)
Hello Andrew,

Thanks for giving us lots of information! They are all really helpful! I applied the MPharm at King's with my high school and university resuults in Toronto, and I'd love to work in Canada in the future!

However, are all the requirements the same for other provencis like Vancouver? I'm thinking of going to Vancouver rather than Toronto.

UToronto is offering a brand new programme this year - the ultimate Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD)! Do you think we would be disadvantaged or hard to get a job?

Cheers,
Daniel
I'm not sure about Vancouver as I've never thought of practising there, so you'll have to look up the info from the BC college of pharmacists (i apologize if that's not the correct.name, I don't currently have a working internet connection so I'm using my phone)
For the pharmD it depends when you graduate, if you're graduating at he same time as the first cohort of PharmDs then you may well be disadvantaged with obtaining an internship position, if you're graduating before that you should have a good change, I think it also depends on experience. But only time will tell, it hasn't happened yet so I could be wrong
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Tototoro
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#11
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Are you Canadians planning on doing a pre-reg in the UK or going straight back to Canada? I'm sort of on the fence. I just want to go back to Canada right away and start earning dollar....but at the same time not sure if I want to be qualified in the UK
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luckyxo
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Im a canadian applying for Pharmacy in the UK. I plan on coming right back ( to toronto ) and writing the exams etc. Does anyone how long it takes approx to return from the UK with an Mpharm to actually being qualified in Canada after writing the exams, and internship etc.
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monkeyolsen
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I think i'm going to get registered in the UK first. I've already done summer placements, and am currently working at Boots, so I think I can get some good experience before going back to T.O.
If possible, I'd also like to get some management skills while I'm with Boots.

It will take at least a year the way I see it. You do your evaluating exam. You go back, do your PEBCs (MCQ & OSCE), then you have to do the studentship and the internship (I'm not sure if you can appeal it after having done the pre-reg in the UK, but I guess I'll have to ask whether or not any of that can count towards the hours required). If you pass your PEBCs on your first try, there's the possibility that you won't have to do the IPG, but chances are you will have to do it, that's another 6 months I think. So yeah, about a year
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CanMpharmer
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(Original post by luckyxo)
Im a canadian applying for Pharmacy in the UK. I plan on coming right back ( to toronto ) and writing the exams etc. Does anyone how long it takes approx to return from the UK with an Mpharm to actually being qualified in Canada after writing the exams, and internship etc.
It takes about 5.5 to 6.5 years. That is 4 years for Mpharm deg. Then 1.5 - 2.5 yrs to qualify in Canada depends on the person.
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CanMpharmer
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(Original post by monkeyolsen)
I think i'm going to get registered in the UK first. I've already done summer placements, and am currently working at Boots, so I think I can get some good experience before going back to T.O.
If possible, I'd also like to get some management skills while I'm with Boots.

It will take at least a year the way I see it. You do your evaluating exam. You go back, do your PEBCs (MCQ & OSCE), then you have to do the studentship and the internship (I'm not sure if you can appeal it after having done the pre-reg in the UK, but I guess I'll have to ask whether or not any of that can count towards the hours required). If you pass your PEBCs on your first try, there's the possibility that you won't have to do the IPG, but chances are you will have to do it, that's another 6 months I think. So yeah, about a year
Hello andrew. It seems to me that you are aware of the general process to be qualified in Canada. But I am not sure if you know about the removal of pharmacy profession from the occupation shortage list in the Uk which makes it much harder to get a pre-reg position. So I would suggest that you consider that. Let me know if you have any questions.
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luckyxo
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(Original post by CanMpharmer)
It takes about 5.5 to 6.5 years. That is 4 years for Mpharm deg. Then 1.5 - 2.5 yrs to qualify in Canada depends on the person.

Wow, i didn't expect it to take that long. I thought it would be more along the lines of a year to a year and a half. Just wondering where you got these numbers from. Did you get your MPharm from a UK Uni and come back to Canada as well?
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CanMpharmer
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(Original post by luckyxo)
Wow, i didn't expect it to take that long. I thought it would be more along the lines of a year to a year and a half. Just wondering where you got these numbers from. Did you get your MPharm from a UK Uni and come back to Canada as well?
I am currently a third year student at manchester, these number are from OCP (ontario college of pharmacist) where canadians will have to register to take the exams.
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monkeyolsen
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(Original post by CanMpharmer)
I am currently a third year student at manchester, these number are from OCP (ontario college of pharmacist) where canadians will have to register to take the exams.
lol OCP is just for Ontario, every province has its own College or regulating body.
The PEBCs are national though,
anyway, I had a question about the Shortage Occupation List issue.
Let's say I've got my 3rd year Boots Placement, and they offer me a Pre-reg, how will this affect me?
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monkeyolsen
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(Original post by CanMpharmer)
Hello andrew. It seems to me that you are aware of the general process to be qualified in Canada. But I am not sure if you know about the removal of pharmacy profession from the occupation shortage list in the Uk which makes it much harder to get a pre-reg position. So I would suggest that you consider that. Let me know if you have any questions.

I did a bit of google-ing (you probably should take a look too just to confirm)
and I don't think there will be a problem
----------------------------------
HOT OFF THE PRESS 21.10.2011

We have stated a second round of recruitment for NHS pre-registration trainee pharmacist places (commencing August 2012). Please note that applications for the second recruitment round can only be made during the two week period from the 21st October 2011 to the 4th of November, 2011.

To see the list of hospitals with vacancies click here

Due to the removal of pre-registration trainee pharmacist from the Shortage Occupation List, this job is subject to a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT).

What is the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT)?
The UK Border Agency (UKBA) requires employers to complete the RLMT (see FAQ below on exemptions to the RLMT) for jobs that are not on the Shortage Occupation List. If the employer wants to employ a non-EEA applicant they must demonstrate that there are no suitable applicants from the UK, EEA or with settled status (indefinite leave to remain) who could fill the post. This is known as the RLMT.

What is meant by ‘suitable’ applicants?
A suitable applicant from the UK, EEA or with settled status (indefinite leave to remain) would be an applicant who meets the minimum requirements to do the job. Minimum requirements are considered to be the essential criteria on the person specification.

Are there any exemptions to the RLMT?
The following are exempt from the RLMT and can be treated in the same way as UK or EEA applicants or those with settled status:
Non-UK/EEA applicants who already have a visa which enables them to work in the UK e.g. spouse visa
Candidates who will graduate from a UK university with a recognised degree (e.g. MPharm or MSc OSPAP) can switch from a Tier 4 student visa to a Tier 2 visa provided they are in the UK when they make their application

N.B. OSPAP PgDip candidates who require a Tier 2 visa are not exempt from the RLMT because the qualification is a diploma and not a degree.

Please note that immigration rules are set by the government and not the NHS.
------------------------------------------------------------------
Source: http://www.pharmalife.co.uk/prr/prrlog.php

See also: http://www.nelm.nhs.uk/en/NeLM-Area/...cupation-list/
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CanMpharmer
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(Original post by monkeyolsen)
lol OCP is just for Ontario, every province has its own College or regulating body.
The PEBCs are national though,
anyway, I had a question about the Shortage Occupation List issue.
Let's say I've got my 3rd year Boots Placement, and they offer me a Pre-reg, how will this affect me?
Am not entirly sure but have a read of this article from the pj journal.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Follow our blogs feed blogs feed
Should pharmacists be removed from the Shortage Occupation List?
By Sadia Naeem
15 Oct 2011

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) is an independent advisory body to the UK government. As readers may have read on the Pharmalife website, the MAC has recommended that pharmacists and pre-registration trainee pharmacists (PRTP) be removed from the Shortage Occupation List; the presence of pharmacists on the list allowed non-EEA (European Economic Area) applicants to apply for posts in the UK. In essence, the MAC now believe that supply of pharmacists is outstripping demand and if the government go ahead with the proposal, non-EEA candidates may be liable to reapply for any positions that they currently have an offer for.

One thing that cannot be disputed is the fact that supply exceeded demand a long time ago. Every year, more home students find themselves without a pre-reg position and pharmacists without a job. I know of pharmacists that commute tens of miles to get to their workplace. The days of commuting being a relatively easy task without the extending snakes of cars down Britain's motorways, however, have long gone, making commuting more of a chore than the actual job in some cases. One pharmacist friend of mine, who has been locuming since he qualified just over a year ago, doesn't even own a car; instead, he commutes by bus all over Manchester. As he is originally from Northern Ireland, when I asked why he didn't move back he responded that it's probably harder to get a job there with the annual outpouring of 120+ Queen's graduates into a smaller market (not to mention the recent introduction of pharmacy into the University of Ulster).

At the same time, because the move comes in the middle of the 2012-2013 pre-reg recruitment process a non-EEA applicant's job offer will not be guaranteed to stand if the government proceeds to act on the MAC's advice, even if the offer has been accepted. A Canadian comrade of mine is currently in this very situation, having obtained and accepted an offer for a joint industry and hospital position (which in itself is no mean feat).

I am still unsure as to which stance I take however I'm currently leaning more towards international students' side. Yanking someone's job offer from them after they'd worked hard to achieve it cannot be ethical, especially as we students have had it constantly drilled into us that we cannot accept a job offer only to withdraw after receiving another offer; many hospital pre-reg applicants (including me) found themselves in this harrowing position and one cannot imagine the stress it heaps on.

In summary, I believe that a) these changes should be brought in and b) they should take effect from 2012 so that applicants are aware of it before they apply in order to make other arrangements if necessary.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Let me know what you think of this.
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