April 27, 2012
The province is adding more prescription drugs to give Manitobans more choice and ease the burden of prescription drug costs for patients and families, Health Minister Theresa Oswald announced.
“What matters to Manitoba families is getting the prescription drugs they need when they’re needed most,” said Oswald. “Manitobans who suffer from serious medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, hypertension, prostate cancer and migraines will benefit from these new treatment options that will be covered by pharmacare, easing the financial burden of prescription drug costs.”
The 179 prescription drugs being added to the Manitoba Drug Benefits and Interchangeability Formulary build upon what is already one of the most comprehensive drug coverage programs in the country, while saving the province and taxpayers more than $10 million annually, the minister said.
Some of the new 179 prescription drugs include:
- Albilify for schizophrenia,
- Actemra for rheumatoid arthritis,
- Januvia and Onglyza for diabetes,
- Xgeva for prostate cancer,
- generic Zolmitriptan for migraine therapy,
- generic Montelukast for asthma, and
- generic Losartan for hypertension.
These latest additions also include many generic versions of prescription drugs and continue to show that Manitoba’s generic drug policy and drug-utilization management agreements ensure lower drug costs for Manitobans and improve access to much-needed innovative drugs, Oswald said.
“The generic drugs being added to the formulary build on Manitoba’s overall success in adding generic medications at competitive prices. In fact, generic drugs account for over 65 per cent of prescriptions in Manitoba, the highest use of generics in the country according to the Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association,” she said.
By switching to the less expensive yet very effective generic drugs from the more expensive name brand drugs, the province will save $10 million a year, Oswald added.
“We are building on Manitoba’s nationally recognized pharmacare program, by expanding treatment options for patients and health-care providers,” the minister said. “Not only will Manitobans benefit from new effective drugs, but the addition of generic alternatives will save money for families and the health-care system.”
Pharmacare is a universal, comprehensive prescription drug program for any Manitoban with benefits based on family income. It covers 100 per cent of eligible drug costs once the income-based deductible is reached, regardless medical condition or age.
Coverage for the new drugs begins May 24. Over the last 12 years, approximately 2,800 new drugs have been added to Manitoba’s world-class pharmacare program, bringing the total to more than 5,000 covered drugs.
For more information on the Manitoba Pharmacare Program, visit: www.gov.mb.ca/health/pharmacare
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