Momentum is building across Canada for the adoption of a national pharmacare program. Recently, federal Health Minister Rona Ambrose asked Ontario to lead discussions with the provinces about the possibility. Some observers argue that a national program would be more accessible, more equitable and more efficient than the existing programs. What is the case for full and universal coverage of prescription drug costs? What are the required conditions for such an initiative to succeed? On February 27, 2015, the IRPP explored these important questions in a webinar discussion with health policy experts and IRPP authors Steven G. Morgan (Are Income-Based Public Drug Benefit Programs Fit for an Aging Population?) and Steven Lewis (It’s Time to Rethink Ottawa’s Role in Health Care).
Steven G. Morgan is a professor in the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia and an expert in pharmaceutical policy. He leads the Pharmaceutical Policy Research Collaboration and is the founder of Pharmacare 2020, a campaign to promote evidence-informed conversation about the future of prescription drug coverage in Canada.
Steven Lewis is a health policy and research consultant based in Saskatoon and adjunct professor of health policy at Simon Fraser University. Prior to resuming a full time consulting practice he headed a health research granting agency and spent seven years as CEO of the Health Services Utilization and Research Commission in Saskatchewan.
Graham Fox has been president and CEO of the IRPP since April 2011. He brings to the organization a decade of executive-level experience in the fields of politics and public policy. Previously he was a strategic policy adviser at the law firm of Fraser Milner Casgrain, and before that he was vice-president of the Public Policy Forum, executive director of the KTA Centre for Collaborative Government, and director of communications at the IRPP.