The most recent budget of the Canadian government includes a space dedicated to a topic that has been debated for years in the country, without any conclusion.
Should the drugs be covered by the health insurance?
The liberal government will take a first step toward materializing this idea, with the creation of a consultation committee that will tour the country and conduct an in-depth investigation to determine if it is feasible to cover drug expenses, in the same way as it does with medical attention.
However, the Minister of Finance clarified some points about this idea, and his explanation does not make everyone happy.
During a conference, Minister Bill Morneau pointed out that the implementation of a medicine insurance covered by the Provinces would have to work with “fiscal responsibility”. In other words, the minister admitted that it would not be a universal system , open to all citizens. On the contrary, it would be a complement, to fill the void; to benefit people who do not have any medication insurance.
One of the obvious examples is that of Ontario.
The province approved a few months ago a plan that will offer medicines for free to people under 24 years of age . Ottawa will take this example and measure the impact of implementing something of this magnitude from one end of the country to the other.
However, the criticisms have not been delayed since Minister Morneau explained the details of his plan. “Millions of Canadians have waited for decades for drugs needed to live and were excited by the announcement of the liberals,” said James Hutt, director of Canadian Health. “Today they clarify that the liberals want only partial coverage of medicines, which is not for everyone.”
The agency notes that for years studies and surveys have supported the idea of a universal system of free medicines for Canadians, they say that in this way the government can negotiate better prices and does not have to deal with payments to insurance companies.
The own statistics of the Federal Government indicate that each year about a million people stop buying food or paying for heating to be able to afford their medicines.
It is not known exactly when this new committee will have a final report of its investigation.
Benjamin Diaz started working for Debate Report in 2017. Ben grew up in a small town in northern Ontario. He studied chemistry in college, graduated, and married his wife a year later. Benhas been a proud Torontonian for the past 10 years. He covers politics and the economy. Previously he wrote for CTV News and the Huffington Post Canada.