PRIME is an online application for eligible healthcare practitioners who need PharmaNet to deliver direct patient care. By enrolling in PRIME, individual users apply directly to the Ministry of Health for approval to access PharmaNet. The process involves secure identity authentication using the mobile BC Services Card.
Once the Ministry has approved a user for PharmaNet access, an administrator in their workplace or a PharmaNet software vendor sets up an access account. (PRIME does not create PharmaNet access accounts.)
On and after December 1, 2020, all new PharmaNet users, who need PharmaNet to deliver direct patient care, must enrol. "New users" are first-time users, or past users who did not have access on November 30, 2020.
On and after December 1, 2020, all healthcare practitioners needing new access to PharmaNet to deliver direct patient care must enrol in PRIME. These practitioners may be new to work that requires PharmaNet access, or may have had access in the past but not on November 30, 2020.
Since May 2020, all PharmaNet users in private community health practices must enrol in PRIME for new PharmaNet access, or to update information (for example, access at a new location). Physicians and nurse practitioners (NP) in private community health care practices also enrol in PRIME if they need remote access to PharmaNet (e.g., from home). Remote access is only available to physicians and NPs in private community healthcare practices. Not all PharmaNet software vendors currently provide remote access; check with your vendor first.
By April 2022, all PharmaNet users will need to have enrolled in PRIME to maintain their PharmaNet access, as required under the Information Management Regulation (see below). Due to the large number of PharmaNet users across the healthcare sector, this will be managed in collaboration with health authorities, professional colleges and other organizations to ensure consistent, measured adoption across the sector. Watch this web page and the PharmaCare Newsletter for onboarding schedules.
For more information, see:
To enrol in PRIME, you will need to set up your mobile BC Services Card first. (If you are not eligible for a BC Services Card, contact email@example.com.)
You will also need your College licence on hand, if you are a regulated user, and the email address for your workplace PharmaNet administrator (your manager will know this).
Once you access PRIME with your mobile BC Services Card, you will be asked to provide or confirm the following basic information:
- Name (legal and preferred), address, phone number, birthdate
- Email address (for the PRIME system to send notifications)
- College ID number and licence type, if applicable
- Job title, if you are acting on behalf of a regulated user
- Email address for your workplace PharmaNet administrator
You will also be asked to declare any past disciplinary or legal actions against you related to handling confidential information. If you answer yes to any of these questions, you will be asked to provide enough information for the Ministry of Health to assess whether access to PharmaNet can be approved. (Note that this will prompt a manual review of your application, which may take some time.)
Once you have completed the application, you must read and accept the PharmaNet User Terms of Access. The terms of access are based on your College registration and/or your role in patient care, the location where you are using PharmaNet to deliver patient care, and any limits or conditions set by the Ministry. Please read the terms of access carefully and ensure that you will be able to comply with each section. Note: If your workplace or role changes, you may need to accept new terms of access.
Once you have accepted the terms of access, PRIME will assign you a global PharmaNet ID (GPID). The GPID will be attached to all your PharmaNet transactions. It must be associated with your PharmaNet user account(s) on whichever software you use to access PharmaNet.
Depending on your work setting, you may use PRIME to notify an appropriate person at your workplace that your GPID is available, or your system may be set up to capture your GPID automatically. Talk to the person in your workplace who is responsible for PharmaNet access accounts before you enrol in PRIME so you understand how your PRIME notification should be routed.
If you don’t know where to send your notification when you enrol in PRIME, you can send the notification to your own email address, and forward it later. You can also go into PRIME at any time and request that your approval notification be sent to an email address you provide. Please note that the notification contains a link to your GPID. The link expires 10 days from the time you send it. If needed, you can return to PRIME to send the notification again at any time.
The terms of access signed in PRIME replace previous paper PharmaNet access agreements (ComPAP, MPAP) and confidentiality undertakings (HAP, EDAP).
Enrol in PRIME.
In 2015, the Information Management Regulation (IMR) under the Pharmaceutical Services Act was brought into effect. The IMR is intended to improve user management for PharmaNet and address security and privacy concerns arising from security breaches and audit reports on PharmaNet. The Regulation requires that the Ministry of Health be solely responsible for granting access and determining privileges for PharmaNet, on an individual basis.
PRIME meets the requirements of the IMR, but it has also been designed to provide a quick, streamlined, uniform way for all PharmaNet users to request Ministry approval for PharmaNet access. Hundreds of healthcare professionals, from pharmacists, to practicing physicians and nurse providers, to medical office assistants, to system administrators, have participated in the development of PRIME, allowing for continuous, responsive improvements.
PRIME contributes to the ongoing evolution of the Ministry of Health's Digital Health Initiative to make more and better healthcare information available online. PRIME's secure online identity authentication for registration is in line with the Ministry's overall strategy for access to online health services and information.
- Improves monitoring and auditing capability for PharmaNet access
- Provides better security for patient and providers data within PharmaNet
- Offers a uniform, consistent means for everyone in the healthcare sector to request approval to access PharmaNet
- Eliminates much of the administrative paperwork and recordkeeping associated with PharmaNet access, which has traditionally fallen to healthcare settings
"PRIME" was originally an acronym for the PharmaNet Revisions for Information Management Enhancement project, but now refers to the system.
You will use PRIME when you:
- Enrol to request Ministry approval to access to PharmaNet
- Re-enrol (e.g., after an absence from the profession or the province)
- Change or update professional information such as:
- a different/new organization type at which you access PharmaNet
- the type of access you need (e.g., move from dispensing at a pharmacy to clinical care in a non-dispensing setting)
- your address, phone number or email
- your legal or preferred name
- your college licence type or renewal date
- request remote access at a new site (private community health practice only at this time)
- Belong to a prescriber group that is granted Regulated User status after you initially enrolled accessing PharmaNet on someone else's behalf
- Renew your PharmaNet access approval with the Ministry (e.g., annually, for most users)
To help staff enrol in PRIME, you will need to identify a PharmaNet administrator in your area who either creates PharmaNet accounts for staff, or communicates with the PharmaNet software vendor. Your staff will need this person's email address when they enrol in PRIME.
How to help your staff:
- After Dec. 1, 2020, give or share Steps to Get Access to PharmaNet (PDF, 507KB). You can enter your PharmaNet administrator’s email before sharing it.
- Support your staff to set up their mobile BC Services Card, which is required to use PRIME. Those without a photo BC Services Card should contact PRIMESupport@gov.bc.ca
- Show them the instructional PRIME enrolment video
The PRIME application works best in certain browsers. It is not supported by Internet Explorer.