The  Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA) prohibits activities related to controlled substances. Researchers (physicians, veterinarians and other researchers affiliated to universities and private industry) requiring a controlled substance for research purposes which include in vitro utilization, administration to animals or human clinical trial or for special activities (e.g. testing of water quality, screening for drugs of abuse), must receive an exemption under Section 56 of the CDSA. The exemption allows the individual to possess a specified quantity of the controlled substance and to administer the controlled substance to human subjects or animals for the purpose of research.

Applicants who wish to request an exemption under section 56 of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act for research purposes should consult "Scientific Exemptions", or practitioners seeking to prescribe methadone should see “Methadone Program”.

Researchers seeking health statistics related to controlled substances may find information through Statistics Canada.

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