Every Canadian deserves to have access to healthcare that includes world class innovative new medicines and vaccines. In British Columbia, we are fortunate to have some of the best and brightest researchers, clinicians, physicians and facilities to provide essential care to our citizens.
But not all British Columbians are getting access to the right medications at the right time. BC PharmaCare was designed to provide coverage to the most vulnerable citizens - often the elderly, low income individuals, and those who do not have access to private health coverage.
BC PharmaCare has announced it will expand the Reference Drug Program; restricting coverage of medicines for thousands of people living with high blood pressure, cholesterol and acid reflux.
The Reference Drug Program ignores the unique needs of individual patients and the benefits of different medicines by limiting the reimbursement of medicines within a therapeutic category to a fixed “reference price.”
Instead of allowing healthcare providers to make the best decisions for and with their patients, under the Reference Drug Program, they have to follow government directives on which medications are covered for their patients. This means that your doctor’s ability to use clinical judgement in the selection of appropriate treatments can be restricted and may lead to negative health consequences for you.
Limiting the ability to choose what is best for each individual patient can lead to poorer health outcomes, lower adherence rates, more frequent visits to the doctor’s office and shifting of additional costs onto patients. This can ultimately lead to higher longer term costs to the healthcare system.
If you agree, share your concern with our Premier and Minister of Health. Use the postal code lookup below to send an electronic letter on why you are against the expansion of the Reference Drug Program.
The health of British Columbians should always come first, and patients should be able to benefit from the best medication option for them based upon the expertise of their physician and their unique health needs.