PharmaCare 101

Last updated: October 24, 2022

PharmaCare 101 is a series of short videos that explain the basics of PharmaCare. It was created for students and health professionals in B.C., but all are welcome to view the modules. Each video can be viewed in 10 minutes.

A live follow-up Q&A with a PharmaCare pharmacist is available for classrooms and staff.

PharmaCare 101 - Module 1

Module 1 discusses the PharmaCare program and plans.

Module 1 - Activity questions and answers

1. Find the Fair PharmaCare assistance levels online.


You can find the assistance levels here: Fair PharmaCare Assistance Levels

2. Determine the family deductible and family maximum for a patient born in 1973 with a family net income of $54,000.


For a person born in 1973 with a net income of $54,000:

  • Fair PharmaCare deductible: $1,600
  • Fair PharmaCare family maximum: $2,150

3. After the deductible is reached, what percentage does the patient pay and what percentage does PharmaCare pay?


After deductible is reached:

  • PharmaCare pays 70%
  • Patient pays 30%

PharmaCare 101 - Module 2

Module 2 explains how PharmaCare decides to cover drugs and the type of coverage to make available.

Module 2 - Activity questions and answers

For these activities. please access the PharmaCare Formulary Search.

1. Search for hydrochlorothiazide (DIN: 00021474). Using the formulary's search results:

  • What plan(s) is it covered under?
  • Does it require Special Authority (SA)?
  • What is the maximum days' supply?
  • Covered under Plan F, P, W, C, I and B
  • Does not require SA
  • Maximum days' supply of 100 days under all plans, except for Plan P which is 35 days

2. For extra practice, try these other drugs: diphenhydramine (DIN: 00757691); rivaroxaban (DIN: 02378604); montelukast (DIN: 02328593)



  • Covered under Plan W and P
  • Does not require SA
  • Maximum days' supply of 35 days


  • Requires SA
  • Maximum days' supply of 100 days


  • Non-benefit

Hint: Plan I is Fair PharmaCare. Think "I" for Income.

PharmaCare 101 - Module 3

Module 3 introduces PharmaCare’s pricing and days’ supply policies and the Special Authority (SA) program.

Module 3 - Activity questions and answers

1. What are the 7 therapeutic classes in the Reference Drug Program (RDP)?

  • angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors
  • angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs)
  • calcium channel blockers (CCBs)
  • H2 receptor antagonists (H2RA)
  • non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • proton pump inhibitors (PPIs)
  • statins

2. What is the reference drug for angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors?



3. What are the Special Authority criteria for chloroquine?

  • Treatment of extraintestinal amebiasis for 3 weeks
  • Rheumatoid arthritis or lupus

PharmaCare 101 - Module 4

Module 4 introduces fees PharmaCare pays to pharmacies for such things as dispensing and adapting prescriptions.

Module 4 - Activity questions and answers

1. Where can you sign up for the PharmaCare Newsletter?


At along the right-hand side.

2. On the newsletter web page, use the search bar to find "New instructions for PharmaNet PHN searches" or navigate to the August 14, 2020 edition.

True or False: When searching for a patient's PHN, the new system automatically searches for first initials when a full name is entered.


False. The new software does not automatically search for first initials. If no correct matches are returned when searching with a full name, try again with the first initial.

PharmaCare 101 - Module 5

Module 5 introduces the Prosthetic and Orthotic Program, PharmaNet and PRIME—the new online system for health care professionals to request approval to access PharmaNet.

Module 5 - Activity questions and answers

1. Find the PharmaCare Prosthetic and Orthotic Policy Manual online. Does the maximum reimbursement amount for an ear prosthesis include clinical labour costs?


The PharmaCare Prosthetic and Orthotic Policy Manual is at

Yes, the clinical labour costs are included.

2. Find the PharmaCare web page about PRIME. What is the secure ID you need to enrol in PRIME?


The PRIME web page may be found at

You will need the BC Services Card app to enrol in PRIME.