Canada's NDP

NDP

February 25th, 2021

Liberals and Conservatives voted against prescription drug coverage for Canadians

ST. JOHN’S – Yesterday, Liberals and Conservatives voted against the NDP's bill to provide pharmacare to Canadians. With millions of Canadians unable to afford the medication their doctors prescribe and COVID-19 exposing the gaps in our healthcare, a national, universal, public pharmacare program is needed now more than ever.

“As many as one in five Canadians can’t afford the medication that their doctor prescribes them and now, the pandemic is causing even more financial hardship. Instead of helping these people, the Liberals and Conservatives have taken the side of big pharma and insurance companies. It’s incredibly disappointing,” said NDP MP Jack Harris (St. John’s East). “Newfoundlanders and Labradorians deserve better and New Democrats are going to keep fighting for pharmacare.”

Despite polls showing that almost 90 per cent of Canadians support pharmacare, by opposing a bill that would pave the way for this program, the Liberals broke their promise to voters and abandoned their commitment to helping those in financial and medical need.

Yesterday, all of the Liberal MPs from Newfoundland and Labrador were among elected officials who rejected the proposal to get drug coverage for people across the country.

“The Liberals have been talking about a pharmacare program for over 20 years but Canada is still the only high-income country with a universal healthcare system that does not include universal coverage of prescription drugs. We also pay some of the highest prices in the world for prescription medication and, today, the government made it clear they aren’t going to do anything about it,” said Harris. “Countless studies like the government’s own Hoskins Report have proved a universal, comprehensive and public pharmacare plan will keep people healthier and save the government billions of dollars. Even though the government refuses to act, New Democrats will keep working to get people the help they need.”