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Home > Information For > Health Professionals > Supports & Networks > Cancer > Cancer Care Pharmacy Network

Cancer Care Pharmacy Network

 Vision statement

“Working together to provide excellence in patient focused care, education, and research.”

The Alberta Health Services - Cancer Care Pharmacy is a provincial network linking Tertiary, Associate, Pediatric and Community Cancer Centres. The Cross Cancer Institute and Tom Baker Cancer Centre Pharmacy Tertiary sites offer training, education and ongoing support to the network pharmacies.


The Chemotherapy Preparation and Handling Training Program is accredited by both the Alberta College of Pharmacists (ACP) and the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), Alberta Branch. The program is held over two days for pharmacists and technicians. The program is accredited for 14 Pharmacy Continuing Education Units (CEUs).  The Pharmacist Training Program offers one additional day of training to AHS Cancer Care Network pharmacists only. The program is accredited by the ACP for 7CEUs.

Programs, supports and communications

Oncology Pharmacy Residency Program

  • The AHS Cancer Care Pharmacy Residency Program provides an experiential learning environment intended to develop exceptional pharmacy practitioners with specialized oncology training. The residency is one year in duration and the resident gains experience in all aspects of oncology pharmacy practice. Further information about the AHS Cancer Care pharmacy residency program can be found at the University of Alberta Residency Program website or the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacists website.

Reach Out Newsletter

  • The monthly Reach Out newsletter is a primary means of communication between AHS Cancer Care Pharmacy and the Community Cancer Network Pharmacy Departments. Articles within the newsletter include Medication Error Prevention Tips, Drug Program Updates and Developments, therapy updates and the CCN Pharmacy Coordinator column. Archived newsletters are available on CancerNet.

Pharmacy Network Meeting

  • The Community Cancer Network Pharmacy Program holds an annual Pharmacy Business meeting and whenever possible, is held in conjunction with the AHS Cancer Care's Cancer Care Conference.

Cancer Care Conference

  • Pharmacists and technicians throughout the Community Cancer Network are encouraged to attend the Cancer Care Conference, which has a strong pharmacy component. The location of the conference may vary from year to year. Past conferences have been held in Edmonton, Calgary and Lloydminster.

Pharmacy Certification Team

  • This team consists of the AHS Cancer Care Pharmacy management team. The team members conduct annual Certification Visits throughout the Community Cancer Network pharmacy departments. Components of a Certification include successful completion of 1) a Written exam, 2) a simulated module and 3) an Observation module, as well as a comprehensive review of Community Cancer Network Pharmacy Standards and Policies.

Provincial IV Team

  • The team is composed of both pharmacists and technicians and meets regularly to discuss and make recommendations on chemotherapy handling and admixing techniques. The team also oversees the training manual for the preparation of cytotoxic admixtures as well as the yearly written exam for CCN site certification.

Provincial Medication Errors Prevention Team

  • The team makes recommendations to prevent medication errors and has representation from tertiary and associate cancer centres as well as both pharmacists and technicians. A medication error prevention scenario is submitted to our monthly newsletter as part of an ongoing effort to keep up awareness. A yearly medication error prevention survey is conducted throughout the AHS Cancer Care Pharmacy Network. (Cusano, Chambers, and Summach, 2009, A Medication Error Prevention Survey: five years of results)

Drug Program Support Team

  • Members are responsible for developing and maintaining resources such as the Parenteral Drug Manual, patient medication teaching sheets, pre-printed drug therapy protocols.


The AHS Cancer Care Pharmacy develops and shares resources throughout the community cancer network. External purchases are available on a cost recovery basis for selected resources (*). For information on our resources, please see our order form.

  • *Laboratory Monitoring in Oncology Module - This manual has information on the application of laboratory monitoring in oncology. Individual drug tables describe the laboratory monitoring required for specific drugs. (Accredited by the Alberta College of Pharmacists for 3 CEUs. Expiry June 30, 2007). Table of Contents.
  • *AHS Cancer Services Pharmacy Cytotoxic and Hazardous Products Training Manual (v9, updated June 2010) - This Manual forms the basis of staff training in Chemotherapy and Preparation and Handling.. Winner of the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacist’s Baxter Award for Excellence in Hospital Pharmacy Practice 1999. Table of Contents.
  • *Parenteral Drug Manual  - This Manual consists of information on parenteral drugs under such headings as indications, contraindications, administration, considerations, precautions, compatibility/drug interactions, adverse effects, storage/stability etc.
  • *Antineoplastic Drug Interactions Manual - This manual has sections on oncology drug-drug, drug-disease, drug-natural products, drug-food interactions.  Table of Contents.
  • *Mistakes, Misinterpretation and Misadventures: Medication Error Prevention in Oncology Second Edition (Accredited for 2.5 CEUs by the ACP - expired June 2009). Table of Contents
  • Patient Medication Teaching sheets on cancer drugs available on CancerNet
  • Pre-printed Drug Protocols soon to be available on CancerNet.