Healthcare services available from pharmacists

Nova Scotia Pharmacare

Healthcare services available from pharmacists

Nova Scotians with a valid health card can visit a pharmacist for certain medical services. There’s no cost for seeing a pharmacist for an assessment, though you may need to pay for prescriptions.

Nova Scotians can see a pharmacist for:

  • prescription renewals for most medications
  • urinary tract infection (UTI) assessment and treatment in women 16 and older
  • contraception management
  • herpes zoster (shingles) assessment and treatment

These services are available at any pharmacy.

Eligibility

For all services, you must be a Nova Scotia resident with a valid Nova Scotia Health Card. If you don’t have a health card, you need to use private insurance or pay the pharmacy directly.

Nova Scotians living in a long-term care facility (like a nursing home or home for special care) are not eligible for these services.

Eligible pharmacy services

Prescription renewals

Pharmacists can prescribe refills for most prescription medications for up to 6 months when appropriate. They can’t prescribe refills for narcotics or controlled drugs.

You can get up to 4 assessments a year (a year is counted as a 365-day period from your first assessment).

Urinary tract infections (UTIs)

Pharmacists can assess and prescribe treatment only for uncomplicated UTIs in women aged 16 or older.

You can get up to 2 assessments a year (a year is counted as a 365-day period from your first assessment).

If there are other factors that are complicating your UTI, the pharmacist may tell you to see a doctor or nurse practitioner for assessment and treatment. If you’re male, or if you’re female and younger than 16, you must see a doctor or nurse practitioner.

Contraception management

Pharmacists can be your primary provider of contraception, including ongoing management of your contraception needs.
Each year, you can get:

  • 1 initial assessment
  • 1 additional assessment that results in a change in contraception
  • 1 additional assessment that results in no change in contraception

A year is counted as the 365-day period from your first assessment.

Herpes zoster (shingles)

Pharmacists can assess and prescribe for herpes zoster (shingles).

You can get up to 2 assessments a year (a year is counted as a 365-day period from your first assessment).

Cost

There is no cost for getting an assessment from a pharmacist, as long as you haven’t used your maximum benefits for the year.
Prescriptions and dispensing fees for drugs the pharmacist gives you may be covered by your individual public or private drug coverage, if you have it.

Contact

If you have questions about any of these services, talk to your pharmacist.