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News and Background

February, 2019

The Prime FAQ has been republished in HTML format.

October 30, 2018

The PRIME FAQ has been updated. It contains information on project changes, including revisions to the roles and process within PRIME.

October 1, 2018

Based on the feedback from stakeholders, the verifier role has been removed from PRIME. We have made additional revisions to address feedback and are in the process of engaging stakeholders to demonstrate a prototype. We have posted a bulletin with more detailed information below which includes a link to the demonstration prototype.  Updated information, including updates to the FAQ, will be posted in the near future.

Please subscribe to the PRIME mailing list to be informed when we update the project. 

August 9, 2018

Due to feedback from our recent engagement sessions, the PRIME Project Team has decided to delay finalization of the prototypes initially planned for August-September, 2018. We are considering feedback from Health Authorities, physicians, pharmacies, and our own Ministry Identity and Access Management experts in the design of the system. The revised timeline for system prototypes has not been finalized. We have posted a bulletin with more detailed information below

In June 2015, the Ministry of Health enacted the Information Management Regulation under the Pharmaceutical Services Act. This regulation introduced new requirements for how access to PharmaNet is granted and managed.

To implement the changes legislated by the Information Management Regulation and required by government policy and standards, the Ministry of Health has launched the PharmaNet Revisions for Information Management Enhancement (PRIME) Project.

The purpose of PRIME is to design and implement a solution for PharmaNet user management that

  • provides access to PharmaNet information for patient care
  • satisfies the requirements of the Information Management Regulation, government policy and best practice,
  • standardizes processes across the province, and
  • ensures that all access is transparent and accountable.


Since its launch in 1995, PharmaNet has transformed into an integral clinical tool for users across the healthcare sector. PharmaNet is used in community and hospital pharmacies, emergency departments, doctors’ offices, hospitals, remote practices, and in other clinical settings to provide information to practitioners for patient care. The transformation of PharmaNet has also seen a dispersal of accountability for user management. Each user group and organization has different access criteria, processes, and monitoring practices.

PharmaNet contains information about almost all B.C. residents and the medical practitioners who serve them. Under the Pharmaceutical Services Act, the Ministry is responsible for all information recorded In PharmaNet, how it is accessed, and how it is used.

The Information Management Regulation formalizes the Ministry of Health as the single authority for PharmaNet. As such, PharmaNet user management will be centralized with the Ministry.

What will change?

For more information about the future state of PRIME, refer to the PRIME FAQ. The Ministry of Health is revising processes and roles based on feedback with information to be included in an upcoming revision.

When will PRIME be implemented?

The Information Management Regulation introduces two key dates:

  • December 1, 2020: the date that all new applicants requesting access to PharmaNet must use the new PRIME solution and be granted access by the Ministry of Health.
  • April 1, 2022: the date by which all existing PharmaNet users (those whose access was grandfathered on December 1, 2020) must be re-enrolled using the Ministry PRIME solution. Existing users will be re-enrolled gradually to reduce disruption.

What if I have questions?

More information will be posted as the PRIME solution is developed and as testing and implementation plans are established. The PRIME project team will continue to engage with stakeholders throughout the life of the project.

Questions or concerns about PRIME can be directed to

How can I stay informed?

Sign up to the PRIME distribution list to stay up to date on the latest project news. The PRIME Project team will use this list to distribute information about the project and its progress.


Project Bulletins: