- PharmaCare is one of the most comprehensive prescription drug programs in Canada. Coverage is available to every British Columbian.
- The province’s Fair PharmaCare plan provides B.C. families with coverage for eligible prescription drugs and designated medical supplies, based on their net income.
- Deductible levels are set up to reflect patients’ ability to pay. Seniors born in or before 1939 receive enhanced assistance.
- There are roughly 260,000 patients, most of whom are registered with Plan C (income assistance), eligible for 100% coverage, as of Jan. 1, 2016.
- Since 2001, the PharmaCare budget has increased by approximately 79%, from $655 million to 1.17 billion for 2016-17.
- In 2016, PharmaCare provided coverage for 32.9 million prescriptions for over 740,000 British Columbians, at a cost of $1.16 billion.
- B.C. is working to control rising drug costs. For example:
- All drug-coverage decisions must go through a rigorous review of clinical evidence to ensure government is consistently covering the most beneficial drugs for B.C. patients with the Province’s limited financial resources.
- Under the Drug Price Regulation, the pricing of generic drugs was lowered to 20% of the brand-name drug price on April 1, 2014 (35% for non-oral solids).
- As a result of implementing the drug price regulation, PharmaCare saved at least $110 million from 2013-14 to 2014-15 on lower generic drug prices.
- Pricing for a select group of 18 high-volume generic drugs was negotiated by the pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance at 18% of the brand price. Effective April 1, 2017, six of those drugs will be reduced to 15% of the brand price.
- The Reference Drug program was expanded in 2016, and now includes eight groups of equally effective drugs that treat the same illness or medical condition. The program changes will save the Ministry of Health roughly $9 million a year.
- The Canadian Institute for Health Information reports B.C. has the lowest per-capita drug spending among the provinces at $807 per person.
British Columbia News
FACTSHEET: The facts on PharmaCare
Thursday, February 16, 2017 12:00 AM