Pharmacy Healthcare


Q2 2022

Summer will officially begin later this month and The Beat is here to help you plan for events and stay on top of important information affecting the healthcare and pharmacy sectors. In this issue, we’ll delve into a report that talks about how global standards are garnering support and building trust in the supply chain. We’ll tell you about the incoming CEO at GS1 Global and give an update on Project Enhanced Data Integrity for Patient Safety. Finally, we’ll focus on how you can check in and collaborate with your peers through committees, conferences and meetings. Welcome to the Q2 issue of The Beat!

What’s Happening at GS1 Canada

Healthcare and Pharmacy Board Member Updates

Pharmacy Co-chair Update and Transition of Terms

Approved at the March 3, 2022 Nominations and Governance Oversight Committee meeting, we would like to welcome our incoming Pharmacy Board co-chair: Marie-Claude Vezina, Vice President & General Manager, Sobeys Inc.

We thank Lori Turik for her years of leadership, counsel and contribution to GS1 Canada’s healthcare governance as she completes her term as co-chair and transitions off the board.

Also approved at the March 3, 2022 Nominations and Governance Oversight Committee meeting, we would like to welcome the following new Board members:

Pharmacy Board

Erica Dalia
Vice President, Pharmaceutical Partnerships, Shoppers Drug Mart

Edith Rolko
Director of Pharmacy, North York General Hospital
Chair, GS1 Canada Pharmacy Deployment Committee

Carenet Healthcare Board

Anuj Pasrija
Vice President, Strategic Customer Group, Johnson & Johnson

Heather Arbuckle
Director of Operations, Stryker Canada

Trusted Strategic Partnerships at Work for Patient Safety – 9,000 Products with 90,000 Pharmaceutical Images and Counting

Through a trusted strategic community partnership, monumental progress has been made to advance patient safety in Canada. Project Enhanced Data Integrity for Patient Safety is an active Pharmacy Board initiative managed through GS1 Canada’s community management process. The initiative advances safety in automated prescription dispensing and electronic medical record traceability processes. The initiative supports pharmaceutical vendors by expediting category completion and a data capture process that includes global standards-based pharmaceutical images, weights and measures, and a barcode scan audit. It is in alignment with GS1 Canada’s data quality framework for authenticated and certified pharmaceutical data achieved through ECCnet Pharmaceutical Content. This work advances the Pharmacy Board’s position of zero tolerance for errors once products reach patient care.

To date, over 300 pharmaceutical vendors have engaged with the project. We’d like to thank McKesson Canada for the use of their facility to capture data so this important pharmacy community initiative could happen, as well as the following data recipient partners who are championing this key patient safety initiative: Canadian Pharmaceutical Distribution Network (CPDN), Familiprix, Groupe Jean-Coutu, HealthPRO, Healthcare Materials Management Services (HMMS), London Drugs, McKesson Canada , Mohawk Medbuy, The NorthWest Company, Shoppers Drug Mart and Sobeys. Together, we are making a difference in patient safety.

Global Standards: The Foundation of a Clinically Integrated Supply Chain

In November 2021, the GS1 Canada Healthcare Board approved the Statement of Direction for the Adoption of Global Standards to enable a Clinically Integrated Supply Chain in Canada’s Healthcare System. The vision of a Clinically Integrated Supply Chain is that every patient record incorporates the common global supply chain language (standards) and accurate data that establish the foundation of patient safety, best possible patient outcomes, robust analytics (clinical outcomes, value-based procurement) and safe, effective product recall management.

The movement toward the adoption of global standards in healthcare is being driven nationally by GS1 Canada’s Healthcare Deployment Committee, which has recently expanded to include representation across the clinical and non-clinical supply chain. Read on to find out how you can join your peers in achieving this vision.

News From Around the World

Building Trust Through Global Product Identification Standards

A new report from Deloitte on securing trust in the global supply chain of COVID-19 vaccines was recently published to reflect the progress made on prerequisites identified in an earlier report. The primary question posed is how can life sciences stakeholders collaborate while ensuring a return on investment and securing trust? This report identifies challenges, lessons learned and a solution for trust.

The distribution of vaccines during the pandemic identified a need to establish and build trust in the global supply chain. The report found that GS1 global product identification standards provide a path forward for the tracking, delivery and administration of medicines and healthcare supplies. Further, standardized product identification can match supply and demand while mitigating chances of counterfeit products reaching consumers. These operational benefits lead to better visibility of the supply chain, which is critical for innovations such as new vaccines. The report stresses that the momentum and insights gained since early 2020 can result in increased accessibility for citizens and countries across the globe.

The report issues a call for leaders in the global health community to take action. It’s believed that highlighting the ability of interoperable systems to combat concerns about product integrity can lead to public trust. A global repository allowing individual countries to contribute traceability data could align supply with demand and be the key to improving supply chain security.

To read the full report, go here.

Standards in Healthcare Webinar – UK Scan4Safety Presentation

Rachel Ellis, Scan4Safety Programme Director

On May 19, the healthcare webinar Improving Patient Safety by Scanning Across the Patient Pathway was hosted by GS1 Global. Rachael Ellis, Scan4Safety Programme Director at Hull University Teaching Hospital, was featured in this session from the UK. The good news is that if you missed it, a recording of the webinar is available for viewing!

Ellis talked about the importance of standards within a hospital setting, giving context and insight to healthcare application. She discussed how the use of standards contributes to a reduction in patient risk. The patient pathway was also described, with an explanation of its role in and impact on implementing a wide-scale program in healthcare.

To view the webinar, click here.

GS1 Planned Leadership Succession

In the coming month, GS1 will undergo a planned leadership succession at the global office in Brussels. Current GS1 President and CEO, Miguel A. Lopera, will be succeeded by Renaud de Barbuat. Officially, Lopera will step down June 30 and de Barbuat will assume the role July 1.

During nearly 20 years with GS1, Lopera has been an accomplished leader. He joined the organization from Procter & Gamble in 2003, working to merge EAN International and UCC for the global launch and rollout of GS1. Other achievements include the creation of new standards for Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and data sharing, the establishment of the Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN) as a global service to exchange product data, and the launch of GS1 Global Healthcare. More recently, Lopera led the GS1 digital transformation with the GS1 Global Registries, and the Global migration to 2D initiative.

Successor de Barbuat has been with GS1 since 2019 and is currently serving as Chief Operating Officer. He has also worked for the organization as Chief Information Officer of Carrefour and has served as a GS1 Board member and GS1 Board Vice-Chair. The incoming CEO has been a strong supporter of and key advocate for GS1 standards, tirelessly promoting the positive impact of the association’s work.

In a press release, Executive Vice-President and Chief Global Supply Chain Officer of Johnson & Johnson and Chair of GS1 Management Board Kathryn Wengel praised both men. “Miguel led the two-decade evolution to a truly global thriving GS1 community, mentoring countless leaders and always ensuring the highest standards and expectations of our community,” said Wengel. She added that Lopera will continue to contribute to GS1 as a Strategic Advisor. Wengel previewed de Barbuat’s new role by saying, “As a digital-first leader, Renaud is well positioned to ensure GS1 is a key leader in the digital world.” Wengel welcomed de Barbuat to the new position and thanked Lopera for his boundless energy and commitment.

Important Rule Change

GLN Non-Reuse Rule Effective July 1, 2022

As of July 1, 2022, the Global Location Number (GLN) non-reuse rule will come into effect. At that time, any GLN allocated to a party or location can no longer be re-allocated to another party or location in any industry. GLN is the GS1 identification key that is used to answer the who and where in supply chain. All types of locations, including supply chain parties, legal entities, functional locations, physical locations and digital locations, can be identified by GLNs. GLNs provide a key to access location master data to manage business processes, such as ordering, shipping and receiving.

Through GS1’s global community management process in 2021, the GLN Standards were updated. These updates included the development of the GLN non-reuse rule and application of relevant changes in GS1 General Specifications, GLN Allocation Rules Standard and GLN Data Model Solution Standard. The GLN non-reuse rule ensures globally unique identification of parties and locations.


  • If the GLN was never published in an externally accessible manner, it can be reused prior to July 1, 2022.
  • If GLNs were discontinued or withdrawn prior to July 1, 2022, they may be considered for reuse to identify the original party or location. However, this isn’t advised.

For more information on the GLN non-reuse rule, see the links below or contact

Get Involved

Pharmacy Deployment Committee

This month, the Pharmacy Deployment Committee meeting will review and finalize best practice medication barcoding guidance. On June 21, the committee will also solidify the workflow value proposition on barcoding standards and data requirements for the Pharmacy Board through the clinical voice, which supports the needs of patient safety and traceability. If you or a member of your organization is a subject matter expert in this area, we encourage your participation in the upcoming work session. To register, please contact the committee facilitator, Angel Bhathal, Senior Director, Industry Relations – Pharmacy at

Healthcare Deployment Committee

GS1 Canada’s Healthcare Deployment Committee, formerly the Healthcare Provider Deployment Committee, brings together health system leaders to drive positive change across the healthcare value chain. This group is committed to bringing to fruition the GS1 Canada Healthcare Board-approved Statement of Direction for the adoption of global standards to enable a Clinically Integrated Supply Chain in Canada’s Healthcare System by:

  • Collaborating with peers and experts from across the healthcare system to learn and enable continued implementation of global standards.
  • Demonstrating the significant benefits of implementing global standards throughout the supply chain, from manufacture to the point of patient care.
  • Fostering Canadians’ confidence in our healthcare system by implementing system-wide supply chain visibility and product traceability capabilities.

If you or a member of your organization is a subject matter expert in this area, we encourage your participation on the committee. To find out more and to join, please contact

The next meeting of this committee will take place on June 14, 2022.

Join the Mailing List

Did you receive this email as a forward and want to subscribe?

Subscribe to The Beat

Check the Healthcare and Pharmacy box.

View previous issues of The Beat