Liberals must use PMPRB delay to ensure Canadians can access life-saving medications: Jeneroux

June 01, 2020

EDMONTON, AB – Matt Jeneroux, Conservative Shadow Minister for Health and Member of Parliament for Edmonton Riverbend, responded to today’s Patented Medicines Prices Review Board (PMPRB) announcement and called on the Liberal government to consult with patients to ensure all Canadians can access life-saving medications.
“I’m relieved that the voices of patients have been heard and the government has decided to delay the changes. However, we still have a lot of uncertainty and I expect the government to use this additional time to better consult with patients,” said MP Jeneroux.
After months of Conservatives advocating on behalf of concerned Canadians, raising the issue in Parliament and writing the Health Minister, the federal government delayed its July 1 implementation of the PMPRB regulations by six months. The regulatory changes set aggressive price ceilings for some new therapies, especially those involving rare disorders, that make it almost guaranteed that these therapies will not be brought to the Canadian market. 
Since October 2019, more than 25 new medicines have been launched in the United States and none of them have been submitted to Health Canada for approval due to the uncertainty of the regulatory changes. 
“We could see a drug shortage if these changes go ahead as planned in six months. Canada will no longer be a competitive marketplace and drug companies will be reluctant to bring their therapies here,” said MP Jeneroux.
Jeneroux added, “I’m regularly speaking with Canadians who depend on daily medical treatment and they’re afraid of how their futures will look if these changes proceed. Without the introduction of life-saving, innovative drugs in Canada, their options are quite limited. I’m again urging the Health Minister to put patients first and consult with them during this period to ensure that Canadians can access life-saving medications.”