Hybrid model of pharmacist services in a large multisite family health team

November 03, 2020

Research paper published in The Canadian Pharmacists Journal

September/October 2020



The pharmacist role, especially in team-based primary care, has evolved tremendously over the past several years. The North York Family Health Team (NYFHT) is an urban family health team serving patients in the northern part of Toronto and surrounding areas. Since its inception in 2008, NYFHT has seen an increasing number of physicians and patients and, subsequently, an increase in staff, including pharmacists, over the years as a direct result of referral volume. There have been 3 full-time pharmacists since 2013 to provide clinical and other professional pharmacist services.

Pharmacist services at the NYFHT encompass a wide range of activities, including but not limited to providing drug information, offering pharmacotherapy consults, conducting medication reviews, supporting various FHT-wide chronic disease management programs, participating in quality improvement initiatives, assisting with data standardization and conducting practice-based research.

The pharmacists are also involved in teaching and precepting medical and pharmacy learners at various levels of education. Teaching occurs via small group seminars as well as large lectures. Precepting occurs 1:1 with pharmacy students and residents.

The pharmacist role at the NYFHT is similar to others in primary care, but the provision of pharmacist services and how it is done is unique compared to what is often described in the literature. Developing the role of the pharmacist at the NYFHT has had some challenges, due to the size of the organization, which is composed of 90 physicians, 40 interprofessional health care providers and over 85,000 patients. The NYFHT physician offices are spread over 20 physical sites across North York, with 1 central interprofessional health office. The interprofessional health care providers include registered pharmacists, registered nurses, registered dietitians, social workers


  • Christine Truong, Rita Ha and Eric Lui, North York FHT

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