Liberals regulatory pharma attitude is preventing new drugs from entering Canada

Written By Daniel Bordman, Posted on July 17, 2020

Canadians are very proud of our universal healthcare system, which is why sometimes legitimate criticisms are ignored out of fear of privatization.  However, for the system to benefit Canadians best some flaws need to be addressed.  This is what the Conservative and Green party is attempting to do with the life saving drug Trikafta, in an initiative spear-headed by MPs David Yurdiga and Elizabeth May respectively.

Trikafta is a new and revolutionary cystic fibrosis drug that has increased lung function with minimal side effects.  Currently, Canadians can gain access to the drug through our Special Access program.  The problem though is that lifetime use of the program caps out at $500 000, and a year on Trikafta costs between $250 000- $300 000.

Cystic Fibrosis is a chronic illness, meaning eventually special access will expire and Canadians will be left without the drug. 

MP David Yurdiga has raised these issues in parliament to Health Minister Patty Hajdu, to no avail.  Here is the press release from the Yurdiga camp that highlights some very troubling issues for the Canadian health care system.


Yurdiga outlines a regulatory climate and culture of denial-ism inside the LPC that lead to a situation that causes 40% of all new drugs to not be available to Canadians. 

When a company develops a new drug, before they even come to the table to negotiate with the Federal government, they must agree to at least a 45% price drop before negotiations even start.  Then, once they have negotiated with the Federal government, they must then sit down with each of the provinces for another round of negotiations.  On top of all this these negotiations are not confidential meaning the process of sitting down with Canada and severely damaging a drug company’s negotiating capabilities internationally.

This is a glaring hole in the Canadian healthcare system that needs to be addressed quickly, because it is leaving Canadians with chronic illness without the life changing medications they need.

Daniel Bordman

Daniel is the host of political satire show Uninterrupted, runs multiple podcasts and has written for a variety of publications. Daniel is also the communications coordinator of the Canadian Antisemitism Education Foundation. You can find him on Twitter here. Uninterrupted on YouTube

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