Most over-the-counter drugs are available in Canada, provided they have been approved by Health Canada. For prescription drugs, patients must consult with an accredited pharmacist, and must (obviously) have an up-to-date prescription signed by a legally practicing doctor in Canada.
Generally, foreign prescriptions will not be honoured in Canada. The best thing to do, if you require prescription drugs during your stay, is to find a doctor in Toronto, and put them in touch with the doctor in your home country. After discussing your needs, the Canadian doctor can fill out a new prescription that will be filled problem-free.
Pharmacists in Canada are amongst the most knowledgeable in their field, and should be able to answer all your questions regarding your prescription, as well as any side-effects, or reactions with other medicines. Pharmacists can also provide information on the over-the-counter drugs in their facility, and whether or not they are advisable for your condition. While many department stores and even some grocery stores have their own pharmacies, drug stores usually offer better service and selection, with many carrying their own in-house brand of common medications. In addition to prescription and off-the-counter medication, most drug stores also carry a wide range of personal care products, baby needs, first aid, and more. Some stores also have small gift sections and carry seasonal products. They also usually stock a selection of snacks and treats, magazines, newspapers and cards. The following are some of the drug store chains that you will find:
- Shopper’s Drug Mart
A huge multi-national chain with many, many locations in Toronto.
- Rexall / Pharma Plus / Guardian / IDA / The Medicine Shoppe
A conglomerate of pharmacies, all of which are very well represented in the city.
There are also many smaller drug stores and pharmacies, often attached to medical buildings or hospitals. Most private drug stores have a smaller selection and mostly carry medication only.
Here’s a list of some private pharmacies in Toronto.
- Central Medical Pharmacy
311 Sherbourne Street, Toronto, ON M5A 3Y1
A drug store that provides a wide range of private services.
- Drugstore Pharmacy
650 Dupont St., Toronto, ON M6G 4B1
449 Carlaw Ave., Toronto, ON M4K 3H9
A centrally located pharmacy that offers consultation and pharmaceuticals.
- Honest Ed’s Pharmacy Ltd
581 Bloor Street West
Toronto, ON M6G 1K3
A Toronto landmark department store that provides inexpensive drugs and over-the-counter services.
- Dale’s Pharmacy
572 Parliament Street, Toronto, ON M4X 1P8
An independent Toronto pharmacy since 1955.
- Total Health Pharmacy
1849 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON M4S 1Y2
Total service on all medication.
For a complete list of pharmacies in Toronto, click here.
Many of the major drugstore chains in Toronto operate 24 hour pharmaceutical locations. Here is a list of 24 Hour locations near you.