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The Natural Health Products Directorate (NHPD) came into effect January 1, 2004 as the division of the Health Products and Food Branch of Health Canada.  It is responsible for implementation of the Natural Health Product Regulations, which include homeopathic products.

In July 2014, the Natural Health Products Directorate (NHPD) changed its name to the Natural and Non- prescription Health Products Directorate (NNHPD).  This is based on the recent expansion of the Directorate’s mandate to include oversight of non-prescription and disinfectant drugs in addition to natural health products (NHPs).


IMPORTING HOMEOPATHIC MEDICINES

As a recognized stakeholder, CSH consults with and monitors developments from NHPD that have the potential of affecting the interests of our members and the broader homeopathic profession.  In 2006, our representatives were active in amending policies that impacted the access of imported homeopathic medicines by professional homeopaths.  As a result, new policy guidelines permitted professional homeopaths to import most homeopathic medicines as long as they are clearly identified for "compounding" use only.  This new interpretation covers both liquid medicating potencies and dry medicated pellets for use by homeopaths in their practice.  

Compounding of a homeopathic medicine refers to the selection and/or preparation of a remedy for a specific individual.  For details of the NHPD policy decisions affecting the importation of homeopathic medicines, please refer to the Compounding Policy and Raw Material Policy on their website.

NHPD regulations do not permit professional homeopaths to import home-use remedy kits, however.  Because these kits contain directions for use, Health Canada views these as retail products for resale purposes, which require a special site licence. 

Some homeopathic orders containing liquid medicating potencies have been seized and destroyed by Canada Post, which has restrictions on handling items with high-level alcohol content.  To avoid similar problems when importing liquid homeopathic medicines, arrange for shipping by courier, rather than the regular postal service.  Dry remedies, however, will not be affected by the Canada Post restrictions.



ADVICE TO OUR PROFESSIONAL MEMBERS

When importing homeopathic medicines for professional use, CSH Registered and Associate members are advised to specifically instruct foreign pharmacies to adhere to the following guidelines: 
  • Each medicine should be labeled only with the remedy name and potency.  Imported remedies with any kind of instructions or claim of effectiveness will be returned to sender.
  • The package should be addressed to the homeopath by name, including professional credentials.
  • The package should carry a label clearly identifying that the contents are “For compounding purposes only by a homeopathic practitioner”.
  • The supplier should use international couriers rather than their mail service if the order contains any liquid product.  Although Canada Post is required to destroy liquid potency remedies as "hazardous materials", there are no such regulations for couriers.


Should difficulties arise with the importation of homeopathic products, our professional members are advised to send details about the contents, entry point, and date of seizure to our office at homeopathy@csoh.ca or 604-803-9242.  Our Advocacy team will offer guidance for future orders and, when appropriate, will investigate your situation with NHPD, while maintaining your anonymity.







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Canadian Society of Homeopaths
#101-1001 West Broadway, Unit 120, Vancouver, BC  V6H 4E4
604-803-9242                    homeopathy@csoh.ca

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Revised: August 05, 2017


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