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Rx squared: Alberta expands range of services provided by pharmacists

EDMONTON - Alberta is allowing a wider range of services to be dispensed by pharmacists.

In addition to dispensing prescription drugs, pharmacists will now be able to counsel patients on ways to stop smoking and set up care plans for those with chronic conditions.

The province is investing $55 million in the project, which is part of four-year plan signed with the Alberta Pharmacists Association.

The agreement comes into force on April 1 and Health Minister Fred Horne says the changes will reduce workloads for other health providers.

The pharmacists will charge between $20 and $100 for the services.

The cost will be borne by taxpayers and not the individual patients.

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