The financial burden of prescription drugs for neurological conditions in Canada: Results from the National Population Health Study of Neurological Conditions
SourceHealth Policy, 121, 4, (2017), pp. 389-396
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectRadboudumc 18: Healthcare improvement science RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
This paper describes the current situation in Canada concerning the availability and use of prescription drugs for neurological conditions. We conducted semi-structured qualitative interviews with health care providers, administrators, community organization representatives, opinion leaders and policy makers. The analysis revealed three primary themes related to the availability of and access to prescription drugs to treat neurological conditions. First, we learned that across Canada there is significant vulnerability and a need for advocacy on behalf of people living with these conditions. Second, we learned that the heightened level of vulnerability and need for advocacy stems in part from the significant differences in the drug coverage available in the different provinces and territories. As a result, there are significant inequities across Canada. Third, we determined that the existing situation is also due to the current approach to health governance (i.e., accountability, transparency). Our study provides evidence for the urgent need for a formal discourse on national pharmacare in Canada, with representatives of neurological conditions having a voice at the table.
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