Convention: 2017

WHEREAS, according to past research published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (published in March, 2015), Canadian taxpayers could save billions of dollars by the introduction of a universal public drug plan to provide prescriptions to all Canadians. The research modelled costs based on data describing $22 billion worth of retail prescription drug purchases in the fiscal year 2012/13 and indicated most prescription drugs are already paid for by taxpayers with $9.7 billion spent directly on public drug plans and $2.4 billion spent on private drug plans for public sector employees; private sector spending on private insurance plans currently accounts for $5.7 billion, and uninsured patients pay $4.5 billion out-of-pocket prescriptions; and

WHEREAS, if Canada could achieve the pricing found in several comparable countries, a universal public drug plan would reduce total spending on prescription drugs in Canada by $7.3 billion per year, or 32%, according to this same research; and

WHEREAS every other developed country with a universal health care system, including countries such as France, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Australia and New Zealand, to name a few, provides universal coverage of prescription drugs – Canada being the exception;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the National Pensioners’ Federation urges the Federal Government to enter into meaningful discussions with the Provinces to provide a National Pharmacare Program so that all Canadians have equal access to prescription drugs at a reduced cost.