Feds Announce Changes To Lower Drug Prices – Lay The Foundation For National Pharmacare

Ottawa/Victoria – On Friday, Ottawa announced the final amendments to the Patented Medicines Regulations. The most significant reforms to the regulations since their introduction in 1987, these amendments will give the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board (PMPRB) the tools to protect Canadians from excessive prices and make patented medicines more affordable.

The BC NDP Government was rather pleased with this decision from the Federal Liberals.

For more information on the federal announcement, visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/news/2019/08/government-of-canada-announces-changes-to-lower-drug-prices-and-lay-the-foundation-for-national-pharmacare.html

For more information on the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board, visit: http://pmprb-cepmb.gc.ca/home

“These are important changes that impact everyone. We know Canadians spend more on prescription drugs, and that drugs themselves are more expensive here than in other countries,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “In B.C., we have taken action to lower drug costs by making record investments in Fair PharmaCare, helping to negotiate a new national generics agreement and expanding the use of biosimilar drugs. I am pleased that the federal government is now doing what they can to protect Canadians against excessive drug costs.

“I have advocated for these changes, which are in the best interest of Canadians as they will help each jurisdiction provide a more sustainable drug plan by allowing their limited health-care dollars to be used more efficiently. I look forward to continue working with the federal government to better manage excessive Canadian drug prices within the international landscape.”

Highlights of the amendments include expanding the PMPRB’s list of countries it uses to compare drug prices, using market prices, rather than the list cost set by the manufacturer and allowing the board to consider a drug’s value for patients and health budgets. Canadians are expected to save roughly $13.2 billion over 10 years as a result of these changes.

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