Toronto 2015 Pan American and Parapan American Games - Importing and Exporting Controlled Substances, Precursor Chemicals and Therapeutic Products

The Government of Canada regulates the importation and exportation of controlled substances, precursor chemicals and therapeutic products including: human drugs, veterinary drugs, natural health products, medical devices, blood and blood components for transfusion.

In Canada controlled substances, precursor chemicals and therapeutic products may be classified and regulated differently than they are in other countries. In Canada controlled substances and precursor chemicals are regulated under the  Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA) and its Regulations and therapeutic products are regulated under the  Food and Drugs Act and its Regulations.

Medical and Veterinary Teams from Participating Countries

It is the responsibility of every team participating in the Toronto 2015 Pan American and Parapan American Games to comply with Canadian regulations when importing controlled substances, precursor chemicals and therapeutic products into Canada and while in possession of controlled substances, precursor chemicals and therapeutic products during their stay in Canada.

Medical and veterinary teams responsible for athletes participating in the Toronto 2015 Pan American and Parapan American Games can import controlled substances, precursor chemicals and therapeutic products for use during the games if certain conditions are followed. These conditions are described below:

Conditions for importing controlled substances, precursor chemicals and therapeutic products
Controlled substances or precursor chemicalsFootnote 1 All other therapeutic productsFootnote 2

Table 1 footnotes

Footnote 1

Listed in Schedule I, II, III, IV, V or VI to the CDSA

Return to footnote 1 referrer

Footnote 2

Human drugs, veterinary drugs, natural health products, medical devices, blood and blood components for transfusion.

Return to footnote 2 referrer

Importation
The Importation of the products has to be made pursuant to and in compliance with an exemption issued under the authority of section 56 of the CDSA. The products imported must be for use on or by a member/animal of the team only. Imported products should be declared to the Government of Canada.
The drug must be shipped/carried in one of the following:
  • Hospital or pharmacy dispensed packaging;
  • Original retail packaging; or
  • Have the original label affixed to it which clearly indicates what the health product is and what it contains.
The drug must be shipped/carried in one of the following:
  • Hospital or pharmacy dispensed packaging;
  • Original retail packaging; or
  • Have the original label affixed to it which clearly indicates what the health product is and what it contains.
At the time of importation, products for human use must be in the possession of the National Olympic Committee (NOC) / National Paralympic Committee (NPC) Chief Medical Officer (CMO) or a medical team representative and products for veterinary use must be in the possession of the NOC/NPC Chief Veterinary Officer (CVO) or a veterinary team representative, (e.g. controlled substances and precursor chemical cannot be shipped separately via freight of courier). At the time of importation, products can be in the possession of the NOC/NPC Chief Medical Officer or a medical team representative or in the possession of the NOC/NPC Chief Veterinary Officer or a veterinary team representative but can also be sent via freight, courier, mail or other means.
Possession
Except as authorized under the regulations to the CDSA or through an exemption pursuant to section 56 of the CDSA issued prior to the date of importation, it would be a criminal offence in Canada for anyone to import, possess and provide in Canada or export from Canada a controlled substance or a precursor chemical listed in the Schedules I, II, III, IV, V, or VI to the CDSA. While in Canada, the products should remain under the control of the NOC/NPC medical or veterinary team and should only be distributed to a member of the delegation and not otherwise distributed in Canada.
Exportation
All products not consumed or used must be exported out of Canada after the Games All products not consumed or used must be exported out of Canada after the Games

Exemption Application/Declaration Form

Health Canada has developed a single form that can be used to both submit an application for controlled substances and precursor chemicals and for declaring therapeutic products that will be imported for the Games. Information provided by the NOC/NPC CMO and CVO on the form will enable Health Canada to identify all products containing controlled substances and precursor chemicals that require exemptions. The information will also be used by Health Canada to identify any potential issues prior to the importation of therapeutic products.

To obtain the exemption application/declaration form (Exemption Application for Importation, Possession and Export of Controlled Substances and Precursor Chemicals / Declaration of Importation of Therapeutic Products Form) and instructions on how to complete and submit the form, please send an email to: biu-uif@hc-sc.gc.ca

To import and export controlled substances and precursor chemicals for the Toronto 2015 Pan American and Parapan American Games, NOC/NPC CMO and CVO must each complete, sign and submit an exemption application that lists all controlled substances and precursor chemicals that will be imported by the team. The application should be submitted at least 60 days prior to the importation of controlled substances and precursor chemicals into Canada. It is also recommended that the NOC/NPC CMO and CVO each declare all therapeutic products that will be imported for the games.

Based on the information provided in the application and an assessment by Health Canada, the NOC/NPC CMO and CVO will each be issued a Therapeutic Product Importation Acknowledgement Letter acknowledging that Health Canada has received and processed the declaration form and/or an exemption to the CDSA, as appropriate.

Please ensure that the exemption application/declarationform and its appendix are completed legibly. Exemption application/declarationforms that are not legible may cause delay in processing.

At the Border

NOC/NPC CMOs or CVOs or medical/veterinary team representatives importing controlled substances, precursor chemicals or therapeutic products without presenting the applicable section 56 exemption under the CDSA and/or not carrying a copy of the Therapeutic Product Importation Acknowledgement Letter issued by Health Canada may be delayed at the border and/or may have their products detained or seized.

Controlled substances and precursor chemicals

NOC/NPC CMOs or CVOs or medical/veterinary team representatives that have controlled substances and precursor chemicals in their possession at the time of their arrival in Canada, are required to carry all applicable exemption issued pursuant to section 56 of the CDSA for review by Canada Border Services Agency officials. The controlled substances and precursor chemicals must be in the possession of the NOC/NPC CMO or CVO or a medical/veterinary team representative at the time of importation, (e.g. products cannot be shipped separately via freight of courier).

Therapeutic products that do not contain controlled substances or precursor chemicals

NOC/NPC CMOs or CVOs or medical/veterinary team representatives importing therapeutic products that do not contain controlled substances and precursor chemicals should carry a copy of the Therapeutic Product Importation Acknowledgement Letter issued by Health Canada. If the therapeutic products are imported via freight, mail, courier or other means, a copy of the Therapeutic Product Importation Acknowledgement Letter should accompany the shipment.

Health Canada does not enforce the World Anti-Doping Code.

Health Canada's oversight of the import/export of controlled substances, chemical precursors and therapeutic products for the Toronto 2015 Pan American and Parapan American Games is not related to the World Anti-Doping Agency's (WADA) List of Prohibited Substances in Sport which will be in effect under the rules of Pan Am and ParaPan Am Games 2015 pursuant to the Pan Am Regulations.

A controlled substance, chemical precursor and therapeutic product allowed for import/export by Health Canada may therefore be a Prohibited Substance in Sport on the WADA List of Prohibited Substances.

For information on the WADA List of Prohibited Substances and the procedures athletes must follow in the event they require use of a Prohibited Substance for a medically justified need, please visit the  World AntiDoping Agency Web site or contact the Toronto 2015 Organizing Committee directly.

Visitors and Athletes visiting Canada

Information for visitors and athletes visiting Canada about the importation of controlled substances and chemical precursors for personal use is available at:

Information for visitors and Athletes visiting Canada about the importation of therapeutic products for personal use is available at:

  • GUIDE-0084 regarding human drugs; veterinary drugs; natural health products; medical devices; blood and blood components

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