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Health Canada Now Requiring Second-Language at Post-Authorization Phase

Mar 20, 2023 | Drug & Biologic Product Submissions, Pharmaceutical and Cosmetics


Effective March 10, 2023, Health Canada changed submission requirements for second-language product monographs for human drugs. This change no longer requires the second language product monograph at the time of submission filing or review. However, both English and French languages need to be on the Drug Product Database (DPD) online and Drug and Health Product Portal (DHPP).

What is included? Rx and over-the-counter pharmaceutical drugs, biologics and radiopharmaceuticals.

What is not included? Labels and package inserts.

It is also important to note that both English and French product monographs are required post-authorization without exception. While this updated requirement provides a cushion of time before the second language product monograph is required, it does not change the product monographs ultimately.

Health Canada has provided this chart for easy reference:

Product monograph (PM) available on DPD Online At time of filing During review Post-authorization
None Both official languages preferred

Minimum is first language PM

Second language PM (if not already provided) Final second language PM
One official language PM only Both official language PMs preferred

Minimum is first language PM

Second language PM (if not already provided) Final second language PM
Both official language PMs First language PM only N/A Final second language PM


Health Canada is in the process of implementing regulations requiring labeling and listing to be submitted in XML PM (eXtensible Markup Language Product Monograph) format. Health Canada is currently accepting voluntary XML PM submissions and are “working hard to prepare the XML PM Guidance along with samples for public comment.”

We will provide more information about how these guidances will affect one another once it is available.

Questions about Health Canada XML PM or ready to get started with your submissions? Contact us at [email protected].