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17 July 2019
On 12 June 2019 the minister of health published the final report (A Prescription for Canada: Achieving Pharmacare for All) from the Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare.(1) The council has recommended that Canada should implement universal, single-payer, public pharmacare by enacting new legislation and proceed in a stepwise approach to implementation. The 2019 Federal Budget announced funding for some of the steps, including the formation of an arms-length national drug agency (for further details please see "Pharmacare advisory council delivers initial recommendations").
The final report outlines the following timeline for implementation:
The council recommends the enactment of new legislation that is separate and distinct from the Health Act. The legislation would outline how governments will work together and share costs, list federal responsibilities and include steps for opting in by provincial and territorial governments.
In a statement, the minister of health detailed that the government "will carefully review the Council's final report and its recommendations" over the coming months. However, Parliament has adjourned until 16 September 2019 and implementation of the council's recommendations may depend on what happens in the federal election, which is scheduled for 21 October 2019.
For further information on this topic please contact Urszula Wojtyra at Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh by telephone (+1 416 593 5514) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org). The Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh website can be accessed at www.smart-biggar.ca.
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