National Pharmacare

Implementation on National Pharmacare 

The Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare, headed by Dr. Eric Hoskins, was tasked to lead a national dialogue on how to best implement national pharmacare in a manner that is affordable for Canadians and their families, employers and governments. The final report has now been released (https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/corporate/about-health-canada/public-engagement/external-advisory-bodies/implementation-national-pharmacare/final-report.html.) 

The Canadian Skin Patient Alliance is happy to see that ideas have been put forward to address the implementation of universal drug coverage for all Canadians. However, we believe that more emphasis needs to be on the overall impact on patient outcomes, less on cost savings and more detail in terms of how the transition will take place. National pharmacare needs to be integrated into the total healthcare system not treated as a separate silo and be flexible enough to accommodate innovator medicines for all skin diseases.

 In response to the final report, here is the CSPA’s Position Statement on National Pharmacare:

The Canadian Skin Patient Alliance is in support of reforms to the way that patients currently access medications in Canada. In order to achieve our mission of “improving the quality of life of Canadians living with skin conditions, diseases and traumas”, an effective pharmacare program is essential to ensure that patients have timely access to medications regardless of income, age, disease or postal code, so that “no one is left behind.”

  • We believe that the overall aim of a National Pharmacare program must be focused on improved patient outcomes as opposed to a cost-saving exercise for the health care system.
  • We believe that patients deserve equitable and timely access to medications that enables one to function in day to day life, be mobile in a comfortable way, lead a full and productive life and be able to contribute to society.
  • We believe that a National Pharmacare program must be affordable to patients, meaning that any out-of-pocket expenses, co-pays and deductibles must be minimized.
  • We believe that changes to the current system must be prepared with adequate consultation, carefully executed, and remain sustainable in the long term. No patient should face temporary or permanent gaps in coverage as a result of the implementation of a new program.
  • We believe that any new system must be flexible and leave room for new innovator medications and allow for patient choice.

Draft: March 8, 2019

Approved: May 17, 2019

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