CSPA position statement* on appropriate access to care and affordable treatments for skin patients in Canada:
- We believe that all patients living with conditions that affect the skin, hair and nails have a right to timely access to care and affordable treatment, as decided by their health care professional, in consultation with the patient. These decisions should not be based on where you live in Canada nor on your financial means. No one should be denied the care they need because they cannot afford it.
- We believe that the process of bringing new treatments to market takes too long and is too complicated. Once a drug is deemed effective and safe, it should be readily available to those who need it.
- We believe that health care professionals need a range of medication options to treat patients appropriately. A treatment that works for one patient may not work for another. In many chronic skin diseases, the body can build up a tolerance to a ‘tried and true’ medication over time and thus new ones need to be continually available.
- We believe that the “step process” for treatment coverage can put undue hardship on the patient and on the health care system. If one is living with a moderate to severe condition, it is clear that a topical will have limited effectiveness and that the health care professional should be allowed to accelerate the steps without compromising coverage.
We ask politicians to consider these issues as they implement changes to the health care system while meaningfully engaging patients in these changes.
*Position statement developed specifically for upcoming provincial/territorial elections
Approved by the CSPA Board of Directors in May 2018