In September 2016, Health Canada launched Consulting Canadians on the Regulation of Self-Care Products, which proposed changes that could significantly alter the way natural health products (NHPs) are regulated in Canada. In February 2018, after considering feedback heard in 2017, Health Canada announced their revised approach to the framework, which includes a three-phase, multi-year plan. In the short term, another round of consultation is expected in the fall of 2018. This consultation will focus on amendments to the Natural Health Products Regulations to change how NHPs are labelled. Details are not available currently, but it is expected that the proposal will include the use of a facts table on the product’s label as well as an outline for providing product information in a clearly displayed way and plain language.
To learn more about the proposed changes and stay updated, Health Canada’s Self-Care Products website provides consumers with the most current information on the proposal.
The Natural Health Products Regulations came into effect in Canada in January, 2004. These regulations provide guidance on product licensing; site licensing; Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) for Natural Health Products (NHPs); labelling information; and clinical trials for NHPs. Important links include:
Consumers wanting to learn more about a particular natural health product (NHP) can use Health Canada’s Licensed Natural Health Product Database. To use it, simply enter the eight-digit Natural Product Number (NPN) found on a product’s label. This database will grant you access to useful information for each product, such as:
The information in this database is updated daily and the website includes a User Guide to help consumers navigating it. You will also find a Terminology Guide to help you understand the words and terms used within the database.
For more information and to access the Licensed Natural Products Database, click here.
The Natural Health Products Ingredients Database is a repository of scientific terminologies and pre-cleared information approved by the Natural and Non-prescription Health Products Directorate (NNHPD).
This database provides detailed information about approved medicinal and non-medicinal ingredients, as well as NNHPD monographs and abbreviated labelling standards.
The information you will find in the database includes:
For more information and to access the Natural Health Products Ingredient Database, click here.
To stay informed on important regulatory initiatives, NNHPD's What's New page houses the latest additions and significant updates to the NHP sector.
All of this information, and more, is available on Health Canada’s website here.
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