Pharmacy Ownership and Premises

Community pharmacies in the ACT need to be licensed under the Public Health Act 1997. In addition, community pharmacy licence holders need to comply with the Public Health (Community Pharmacy) Code of Practice 2016 (No 1).

In accordance with the Public Health Act 1997, a pharmacy business owner must be a pharmacist, a complying pharmacy corporation or a former corporate pharmacist.

Failure to have a licence may render a community pharmacy owner liable for penalties or other enforcement action under the Public Health Act 1997, including being required to cease business activity.

Copies of all relevant legislation, including the Code of Practice, are available on the ACT Legislation Register.


Licence application forms

Please download and submit a form below to apply for a Community Pharmacy Licence under the Public Health Act 1997.

The fees for a Community Pharmacy Licence are as follows:

  • New Community Pharmacy Licence fee - $601
  • Renewal of Community Pharmacy Licence fee (annual) - $601
  • Transfer of ownership of Community Pharmacy Licence fee - $360

Apply Online

Community Pharmacy New Licence Application

Community Pharmacy Licence - Additional Company Details

Community Pharmacy Licence - Additional Owner Details


Apply Online

Community Pharmacy Licence Variation Application


Apply Online

Community Pharmacy Licence Transfer Application

Storage of Dispensed Prescriptions Offsite

Under the section 120 (h) of the Medicines, Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Regulation 2008, community pharmacies are required to keep dispensed prescriptions at the pharmacy for 2 years from the date of dispensing. 

Community pharmacies wishing to store dispensed prescriptions outside pharmacy premises may apply to the Chief Health Officer by completing an Application to Store Dispensed Prescriptions Offsite.

Community pharmacies will need to ensure the prescriptions are stored in a way that protects them from loss (including damage), interference or misuse in accordance with the privacy principles 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3 of Health Records (Privacy and Access) Act 1997.

Pharmacy Inspections

Routine pharmacy inspections are performed by the Health Protection Service. A pharmacy inspector may inspect a pharmacy business at any reasonable time without prior notice. Pharmacy staff are entitled to ask any inspecting officer to produce their identify card and ask questions relating to the inspection or pharmacy regulation.

During a pharmacy inspection, the inspecting officer will assess the pharmacy business against legislative requirements under the Public Health Act 1997 and the Medicines, Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 2008.

Please contact the Pharmaceutical Services section of the Health Protection Service on (02) 6205 0998 if you have any further questions regarding community pharmacy licences.