Drug Interactions

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Did you see the Canadian Pharmacists Association’s recent release about “Pharmacy in Canada”? It states that pharmacists are “increasingly being recognized as the medication management experts of the healthcare team” and as such are in an excellent position to identify, manage, and monitor drug interaction issues.

As oncology pharmacists, we know that one of the key needs of cancer patients is the avoidance and/or management of drug interactions related to anticancer therapies. Identification and management of potential and actual drug interactions can help to minimize adverse events and maximize the intended impact of cancer treatments, supportive care agents and pharmacotherapy for additional co-morbidities.

CAPhO’s Drug Interactions Program, the second installment of Oncology Practice Essentials, consists of a mixture of online independent study and a live virtual workshop. You begin with the basics (Phase 1), then put that learning to the test by working through progressively difficult case studies (Phase 2), accumulating into an accredited live virtual workshop (Phase 3), which is supported by a variety of Drug Interactions Resources).

Phase 1: BC Cancer's Drug Interactions

The BC Cancer’s “Drug Interactions” course was written and reviewed by pharmacists and incorporates the unique perspective of oncology pharmacy practice. It is accessible at no charge to CAPhO members and non-members who are healthcare professionals.

Access Phase 1: BC Cancer's Drug Interactions

Phase 2: "Choose Your Own Adventure"

At your own pace, work through three drug interaction cases, from simple to complex. The cases replicate common oncology drug interactions seen in practice that can have a variety of correct (or somewhat correct) management strategies. You will be asked to make a series of decisions including developing a recommendation and determining how best to implement your recommendation. It is accessible at no charge to CAPhO members only (members need to log in). (Phase 2 is not accredited but your learning can be used towards non-accredited hours.)

Members - Access Phase 2: ”Choose Your Own Adventure" at no charge

Phase 3: Live Virtual Workshop

Phase 3 of CAPhO’s Drug Interactions Program is an in-person (held in conjunction with the CAPhO Conference) or virtual live workshop, both of which are accredited.

In small groups, the participants will work through drug interaction cases with the support of expert facilitators. The cases will be typical of clinically relevant drug interactions encountered in oncology pharmacy practice. The groups will make a series of decisions including: interpretation of the drug interaction resource information; development of a pharmaceutical care plan, including a recommendation, clinical rationale, and communication of the plan; and creation of a patient follow-up and/or monitoring plan.

Access Phase 3: Live Workshop

Drug Interactions Resources

Participants in the Drug Interactions Workshops work through case studies typical of clinically relevant drug interactions they encounter in oncology pharmacy practice. Before participants arrive at the Workshop, they are asked to review relevant literature, either sourced online or via webinars created by CAPhO members. Members, log in to access the Drug Interactions Resources.

Members - Access Drug Interactions Resources


Drug Interactions Program Learning Objectives

The learner will:

  1. Examine and discuss the mechanisms (or mechanism theories) of common drug interactions seen in oncology practice to gain deeper knowledge of their clinical significance
  2. Evaluate the readily available drug interaction resource information that is commonly used in practice to support clinical decision making
  3. Formulate optimal therapeutic plans through a systematic process, critical thinking and clinical judgment to manage and monitor oncology drug interactions
  4. Demonstrate effective communication of drug interaction management plans to support implementation, collaboration and ongoing continuity of care
  5. Be encouraged to develop confidence and professional leadership within the context of drug interactions management

Drug Interactions Contributors

Drug Interactions is an educational initiative that is a product of the efforts, resources and time of many people. The following CAPhO members supported the creation of this program.

Phase 1 - BC Cancer's Drug Interactions

CAPhO would like to acknowledge BC Cancer in allowing Oncology Pharmacists access to its online “Drug Interactions Module,” which is Phase 1 of this three-phased Drug Interactions Program. We would especially like to thank Lynne Nakashima and Rhonda Kalyn for their initial support.

Phase 2 - "Choose Your Own Adventure"

The following CAPhO Members were involved in Phase 2 as Authors and Reviewers:

  • Beverly Dawson, BScPharm, BCPS, PharmD, Clinical Pharmacist in Oncology, Vitalité Health Network, New Brunswick
  • Jennifer Jupp, BScPharm, BCOP, Clinical Practice Leader, Hematology, Oncology, Blood and Marrow Transplant, Pharmacy Services, Alberta Health Services, Alberta
  • Nicole MacDonald, BScPharm, ACPR, Clinical Pharmacist, Dr. H. Bliss Murphy Cancer Centre, Eastern Health, Newfoundland
  • Tiffany Nguyen, BScPharm, ACPR, BCOP, Clinical Pharmacist, Bone Marrow Transplant Program, The Ottawa Hospital, Ontario
  • Danica Wasney, BScPharm, ACPR, BCOP, Clinical Pharmacist, Provincial Oncology Drug Program, CancerCare Manitoba, Manitoba Jason Wentzell, BScPharm, ACPR, BCOP, Clinical Pharmacist, Medical Oncology, The Ottawa Hospital, Ontario
Phase 3 - Live Workshop

Visit the Live Workshop page for the list of contributors

Drug Interactions Module Task Force and Support Team

2022 Drug Interactions Module Task Force members:

  • Nikki Blosser (Chair)
  • Kyla Bailey
  • Tina Crosbie
  • Nadine Glynn
  • Nicole Kennedy
  • Michelle Koberinski
  • Colleen Thurber
  • Jennifer Voisey
  • Jason Wentzell 

Support Team members:

  • Sea to Sky Meeting and Association Management Inc., Administrative Support
  • Mark Stephens, Windward Design Group, Graphic Designer


Oncology’s Drug Interactions Program Disclaimer

The Canadian Association of Pharmacy in Oncology’s Drug Interactions Program has been designed to provide a general overview of oncology drug pharmacology and therapeutics. It is NOT intended to be a comprehensive reference and as such, it does NOT provide detailed explanations of mechanisms of action, descriptions of all drug indications, or an in-depth review of all possible adverse effects or drug interactions. The information contained in the Drug Interactions Program is not intended to be used to direct patient care decisions. It is important to utilize appropriate comprehensive resources, applicable primary literature and clinical judgment when making decisions regarding patient care.

CAPhO is not liable for any information provided in the content of the Drug Interactions Program. CAPhO hereby disclaims all liability for any claims, losses or damages in connection with use or application of these materials.

The content of the Drug Interactions cases is for educational purposes only and may contain some copyrighted materials from biology textbooks, medical periodicals, articles and websites. Wherever possible, the authors of such materials have been contacted for permission to use and/or adapt such materials; a reference or link is provided to the original source.

This educational initiative was funded by CAPhO. It has received no financial or in-kind support from any commercial or other organization.

CAPhO would like to acknowledge BC Cancer in allowing oncology pharmacists access to its online “Drug Interactions Module,” which is Phase 1 of this three-phased Drug Interactions Program.