Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association submits its approach to the advisory council on the Implementation of Pharmacare

Wednesday, October 3, 2018 Health Insurance News
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TORONTO, Oct. 3, 2018 /CNW/ - Today, the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association (CLHIA) published its submission

to the Government of Canada's Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare as part of its consultation process. The Council, created through Budget 2018 and chaired by former Ontario
Minister of Health and Long-Term Care Dr. Eric Hoskins, has been mandated with leading a national dialogue on how to implement affordable national pharmacare.

"Canada's life and health insurers welcome the opportunity to improve the prescription drug system in Canada and support fundamental reform," said Stephen Frank, President and CEO, CLHIA. "Canadians should have access to affordable medicine regardless of where they live across the country. We support reform that is affordable, achievable and protects the workplace benefit plans that Canadians value. Working in partnership with governments, our industry is ready to do its part to help shape reform."

More than 25 million Canadians access prescription medicines today through their health benefit plans.  There is a lot at stake for Canada to get reform right.  Recent research indicates that moving away from a workplace plan to a public plan would result in more than 7.7 million Canadians being at risk of losing access to medications they take today. Canadians with depression, diabetes, cancer and pain issues would be most at risk of losing access to much needed medication.

The life and health insurance industry is advocating for significant, comprehensive reform to Canada's pharmacare system. The submission asserts that merely "filling the gaps" will not adequately address overall access issues, drive down costs for drugs or create a financially sustainable model for responsibly managing nationalized coverage.

"We recognize the government's ambition on this project and applaud their goal of ensuring prescription medication is firmly within the reach of all Canadians," Frank continued. "We look forward to the next steps in the Advisory Council process and to continuing to work together with Governments to improve Canada's prescription drug system."

About the CLHIA

The CLHIA is a voluntary association whose member companies account for 99% of Canada's life and health insurance business. The industry provides a wide range of financial security products such as life insurance, annuities (including RRSPs, RRIFs and pensions) and supplementary health insurance to more than 29 million Canadians. It also holds over $860 billion in assets in Canada and employs more than 155,000 Canadians.

SOURCE Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association Inc.

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