Press Release – Ottawa (Marketwire, February 2, 2009) – FSNA congratulates the Health Council of Canada for reminding the federal, provincial and territorial governments of their commitments to Canadians to develop and implement a National Pharmaceuticals Strategy (NPS). In their January 2009 report, The National Pharmaceuticals Strategy: A Prescription Unfilled, the Health Council of Canada asks for re-engagement of Ministers of Health to the NPS.
“Governments promised a strategy that would reduce the overall costs of prescribed drugs while ensuring their safety and effectiveness.” said Dennis Jackson, FSNA National President. “With total drug expenditures expected to reach $29.8 billion in 2008, and the upward trend expected to continue, the sustainability of private and public drug plans are at risk.”
The 2004, 10-year plan to strengthen health care in Canada included a commitment by governments to pursue pricing and purchasing strategies in order to obtain best prices for Canadians for drugs and vaccines. The bulk buying power of all provinces and territories would greatly reduce the costs of prescription drugs. In this context, the September 2008 Annual Conference of Provincial-Territorial Ministers of Health made the very positive announcement that there is a greater than 90% commonality amongst jurisdictional drug plans. Inexplicably, the Ministers of Health then recommended that a national approach to pricing and purchasing savings not be undertaken collectively at this time.
FSNA urges the Health Ministers to work together on a national strategy to achieve lower costs for safe and effective prescription drugs for all Canadians.
FSNA is the largest and most influential advocacy group for federal retirees. As a not-for-profit association with more than 165,000 members, FSNA is recognized by the Government of Canada as the major representative of pensioners – and their partners, and survivors – from the Public Service, Canadian Forces and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and of retired federally appointed judges. FSNA’s mission is focused on protecting the interests and improving the benefits of pensioners.
- 30 -