The Minister of Health has announced that federally funded drug plans will join the provinces in the pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance (PCPA) in an effort to reduce drug costs. The PCPA is an informal (non-legislative) alliance that is a branch of the Council of the Federation (COF) comprised of the 13 provincial and territorial governments of Canada. The PCPA’s role is to negotiate the price of drug products on behalf of all of the participating government drug plans. Once a price has been negotiated, manufacturers must then negotiate a product listing agreement with each drug plan directly for the drug to be covered under that plan. Participation in the PCPA does not guarantee that a drug will be covered by all participating plans.
This announcement means that federal drug plans (i.e., for First Nations and Inuit, the RCMP, the Canadian Forces, veterans, federal inmates and refugee protection claimants) will not participate in the PCPA negotiations.
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