Health care organizations and unions have ramped up their pressure on the federal government to push for a universal Pharmacare program.

CFNU has a petition calling on the Trudeau government to “provide equal access to affordable prescription medication to everyone. Canada has universal health care but it does not include prescription drugs.” To sign the petition, please click this link.

Former health ministers Dr. Jane Philpott and Dr. Eric Hoskins added their voices to the call for universal Pharmacare. Here is an excerpt from a National Newswatch opinion piece:

The call for public universal pharmacare has been bolstered by two former Liberal Health Ministers. Former federal Health Minister Dr. Jane Philpott and Ontario’s former Health Minister Dr. Eric Hoskins have joined a growing chorus of experts, health care providers, health agencies, concerned patients and citizens.

Dr. Philpott and Dr. Hoskins are encouraging Health Minister Mark Holland to introduce strong universal pharmacare legislation this fall to address the high price of prescription medicine for the health system and the inequitable lack of access to this medicine for 1 in 5 people in Canada, and reject a piecemeal fill-the-gaps approach.

Dr. Hoskins led a federal study of pharmacare in 2019 which recommended a national universal prescription drug coverage program. “We should approach prescription drugs the same way we do health care, which should be based on your need, and not on your ability to pay. And that principle of Medicare should necessarily be translated into a similar principle for pharmacare,” he told journalist Glen McGregor.

To read the entire opinion piece, please visit this link.