Yesterday an open letter addressed to the leaders of Canada's federal political parties was published calling for a firm commitment to implementing a universal, comprehensive, public pharmacare plan for Canada in election manifestos. I signed this letter, along with my colleague, CMAJ Deputy Editor Matthew Stanbrook, the former federal Minister of Health Dr. Jane Philpott, 537 other physicians, and 700+ more academics and policy experts. Altogether, there are 1282 signatories.
Interview with Dr. Steve Morgan, professor of health policy at the University of British Columbia School of Population and Public Health and Dr. Nav Persaud, physician at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto and assistant professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto.
Dr. Morgan, Dr. Persaud and their co-authors published a research article in CMAJ in which they estimated the likely savings from public coverage of a list of essential medicines across Canada. They explain their findings in this podcast.
Jesse Kancir is a resident in Public Health and Preventive Medicine at the University of British Columbia, and former Policy Adviser to Canadian federal Minister of Health, Jane Philpott
Donald Trump’s inauguration as president of the United States is a cause for worry for population and public health. An early policy victim appears to be Obama’s Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA’s founding policy debates influenced my own interest in public health and health systems as a young medical student so the early steps taken by US Congress to dismantle it have affected me deeply. But it’s not just nostalgia. Concerns are real that Trump’s administration may impact global welfare, yet I’ve been comforted by thinking that a Trump administration highlights several opportunities for progress in Canadian healthcare. In 2017, Canadian healthcare can strive to contrast with negative developments in the US and be the highest expression of our commitment to each other and to a better society. ...continue reading →
SEVEN BILLION. This is the amount of Canadian dollars that could be saved on prescription drug expenditures every year.
The statistics speak for themselves. The evidence, published in countless editorials and reports across the country, is difficult to deny.
On average, our country spends 30% more than our OECD peers on prescription drug coverage. Of these nations, Canada has the fastest rising drug costs. These costs are often shouldered by our patients due to the low proportion of public funding for pharmaceutical products. Our current system is fragmented and inefficient, leading to profound inequities with regards to who gets to fill their medication prescriptions and thus, who gets to access our health care system. ...continue reading →