TORONTO, Nov. 19, 2012 /CNW/ - The Ontario Pharmacists' Association
supports the position of the Honourable Deb Matthews, Ontario's
Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, and calls for a deferral of the
decision by Health Canada until it can be determined if the
introduction of a generic version will result in the same public health
issues that arose through the misuse and abuse of OxyContin®.
Currently, Health Canada is reviewing applications to allow generic
versions of OxyContin to enter the Canadian market once the patent for
OxyContin held by Purdue Pharma expires in the latter part of November.
The Ontario Pharmacists' Association (OPA) respects the tenets of
Canada's drug approval system and believes that the health interests of
Canadians is top of mind when new submissions are considered by Health
Management of chronic pain is highly complex. Collaboration and
communication among health care professionals and the patients for whom
they care is critical in this specific context.
Pharmacists are acutely aware of the role they play as medication
management experts. While the drug approval process is designed to
ensure that a product is safe and effective, it cannot protect patients
against any product's eventual misuse and alteration, or illicit
To that end, OPA and its members are concerned with and do not support
the introduction of any generic version of OxyContin because it may
contribute to a growing and well documented public health crisis
related to abuse and misuse of a powerful and addictive analgesic.
In addition, Ontario's pharmacists are concerned that the re-entry of
this highly sought after formulation of oxycodone will lead to a
resurgence of pharmacy armed robberies and break-ins which have been on
the decline in some Ontario jurisdictions since OxyContin was phased
Pharmacists are aware that there are many chronic pain sufferers who are
calling for the entry of generic versions of OxyContin, citing a much
greater analgesic profile over that offered by OxyNEO®. It is for these
patients whom pharmacists and prescribers must work collaboratively to
more effectively manage chronic pain.
The Ontario Pharmacists' Association has consistently advocated for
inter-professional collaboration in chronic pain management and the
creation of tools that will facilitate these efforts. Included in this
is the need of government and healthcare providers to accelerate the
introduction and implementation of electronic prescribing, a drug
information system, and inter-operable electronic health records.
About the Ontario Pharmacists' Association
The Ontario Pharmacists' Association is the professional association
that represents the views and interests of more than 13,600 pharmacists
and pharmacists-in-training across the province. The Association works
to inspire excellence in the profession and practice of pharmacy, and
to promote wellness for patients.
SOURCE: Ontario Pharmacists' Association
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