Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction

Public Consultation on Behavioural and Technical Competencies for Non-Expert Prescribers Opens Today!


Ottawa, Dec. 19, 2023 — The new Behavioural and Technical Competencies for Non-Expert Prescribers are entering the final stages of development. As part of the development process, the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA) is holding a four-week, online public consultation from Dec. 19, 2023, to Jan. 16, 2024, on the draft version of the competencies.

Members of the public interested in participating are asked to complete the online forum with questions based on the draft competencies. All responses from the questionnaire will remain anonymous.

The draft version of the competencies is based on academic and grey literature, in addition to consultations with substance use care experts and people with lived or living experience (PLLE).

The results from this public consultation will be reviewed by the PAS Steering Group. Feedback from the public consultation will be organized thematically and accepted by the Steering Group through consensus decision making. The PAS Steering Group is constructed of experts with clinical experience, lived and living experience with substance use or substance use care leadership expertise.

Feedback from the public consultation will help inform and validate the final version of the competencies. Once completed, these competencies will help address workforce challenges, such as standardization of interpersonal approaches that would help improve the quality-of-care received by people who use substances.

The final competencies for Non-Expert Prescribers are currently set to be released on February 29, 2024. They will be free to access on the CCSA website and available in Canada’s official two languages.

Additional Project information:

The Standards Council of Canada (SCC) contracted CCSA to lead the development of technical and behavioural workforce competencies (the competencies) for non-expert prescribers to support the consistent quality provision of evidence-based substance use care. Non-expert prescribers are defined as professionals who are not specialized in treating substance use and addiction but could offer substance use support as part of their broader work context. Technical competencies outline the skills a provider should have to address substance use concerns, while behavioral competencies identify how the prescriber should engage with an individual.

The competencies are one of the Government of Canada’s six Mental Health and Substance Use Health (MHSUH) priority topics that will result in integrated standards-based deliverables of national scope. To learn more about the PAS by the SCC, visit here.

Media contact
Lee Arbon, Communications Advisor,
Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction
Tel.: 647-266-5469 | Email: | Twitter: @CCSAcanada

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