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Description of the Community Pharmacy Nurses's Practice in Quebec

Principal investigators

Marie-Eve Poitras RN, PhD, Benoit Cossette B. Pharm. Ph.D., Marie-Josée Emond RN M.Sc. Ph.D. Candidate 


CRMUS Chair in optimal professional practices in primary care (2022-2023) , Bourses de la relève professorale en sciences infirmières (MES-RRISIQ) (2022-2023), Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences Excellence Scholarship (2023-2025), MES-RRISIQ Scholarships for New Professors in Nursing (2023-2024) 

Study setting

Province of Quebec 


Nurses; Professional practice; Nursing role; Nursing activities; Community pharmacies; Pharmacists; 


Community pharmacies offer pharmaceutical services to the public. In Quebec, they are an essential outreach service in primary care. Not only do pharmacists help support and promote health through various interventions, but nurses are also present to respond to specific health issues and provide particular care and services. In 2021, the Ordre des infirmières et infirmiers du Québec counted 478 nurses who had declared a community pharmacy as their practice setting.  


According to scientific literature, nurses in Quebec perform vaccinations in community pharmacies. Locally, however, some Quebec pharmacies' websites offer several other activities. Specifically, in Quebec, there is a discrepancy between the activities nurses practice in pharmacies, as reported in the literature, and the actual services provided.  

Understanding their roles and activities can help optimize nurses' contributions. However, when it comes to describing pharmacy nursing practice, several questions remain. The OIIQ does not describe nursing practice in pharmacy, which provides few frameworks for the practice and occupation of this profession's full scope of practice. 

What are our goals?

This study aims to describe the practice of community pharmacy nurses in Quebec. The objectives are to  :

  1. To measure actual scope of nursing practice (ASCOP) t in community pharmacy

  2. Describe the activities of community pharmacy nurses  

  3. Understand community pharmacy nursing practice according to practice contexts and interprofessional perspectives

Pharmacien dans l'allée de la pharmacie


We will use a mixed quote, i.e. a quote combining a quantitative part (Phase 1) and a qualitative part (Phase 2).


Phase 1 corresponds to a cross-sectional quantitative study. For this phase, an online survey with a self-administered questionnaire will be carried out among community pharmacy nurses. The questionnaire will include a list of activities potentially performed in pharmacy and the ASCOP questionnaire adapted to the pharmacy context. This phase will enable the first two objectives to be met.


Phase 2 will involve a qualitative study of multiple cases. This will allow the team to understand better community pharmacy nurses' practice in different practice settings. To this end, individual interviews will be conducted with nurses working in community pharmacies. Other data sources, such as interviews with pharmacists and internal documents, will also be included to understand better the practice context, interprofessional collaboration, and activities carried out. 

What results we aim for?

To our knowledge, this will be the first specific study of the professional practice of community pharmacy nurses in Quebec. Firstly, the functions and responsibilities arising from actual nursing practice in community pharmacy. The activities carried out by pharmacy nurses will then be known and quantified, portraying their professional practice and the elements that can influence it (e.g., practice context and interprofessional collaboration). 

At the end of the project, a description of nursing practice in pharmacy will be created based on the data collected during the project. This will include a list of activities carried out by pharmacy nurses and elements for understanding practice in different contexts. Recommendations will also be issued to enhance the primary care role of nurses practicing in pharmacy.


Finally, knowledge transfer activities will be carried out to inform pharmacy nurses and pharmacist-owners about the possibilities of pharmacy nursing practice. This will enable these nurses to optimize their scope of practice in community pharmacy. With the help of the recommendations and the pharmacy practice map, they will be able to expand their role by gaining a better understanding of possible activities. The transfer of knowledge from this study will also benefit community pharmacy managers, particularly regarding the role, potential activities, and likely place of nurses in the team. 

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