Rx&D commends British Columbia Government's effort to expand access to
affordable medicines

OTTAWA, July 13 /CNW Telbec/ - Canada's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies (Rx&D) commend the B.C. government's efforts to lower generic prices and redirect the savings to cover innovative medicines and vaccines and provide better services to all British Columbians.

The three-year Pharmacy Services Agreement between the Government, the B.C. Pharmacy Association and the Canadian Association of Chain Drug Stores will translate into lower prices and new reimbursement arrangements for multi-source drugs. This will lead to increased competition between generic drug makers and enhanced savings to B.C. taxpayers.

"As partners in the health care system, we will work with the government and health care providers to ensure that patients have access to the most appropriate treatment," said Russell Williams, President of Rx&D. "We support the government's decision to re-invest the money for value added health services including improving patient health outcomes through better access to new medicines and vaccines and enhanced patient care. We hope that rebates will be eliminated in the next Pharmacy Services Agreement."

"It has been clearly demonstrated that access to innovative medicines and vaccines improves patient outcomes and contributes to the sustainability of our health care system by reducing hospitalization, surgery and other health costs," said Ronnie Miller, President and CEO of Roche Canada and member of Rx&D's B.C. Committee. "The B.C. government deserves recognition for its efforts to make the health care system sustainable."

Rx&D expresses strong support for the role of pharmacists as a vital and integral part of the health care system as the government will invest in new clinical pharmacy services. Rx&D and its members look forward to working collaboratively with pharmacy and government to improve outcomes and encourage safe and appropriate medication use.

The agreement represents the implementation of recommendations 7 and 8 of the Pharmaceutical Task Force Report tabled in 2008. Mr. Williams concluded, "We look forward to working with the Government on the successful implementation of the rest of the recommendations. Our commitment is to put patients first and we will continue to partner with all stakeholders to improve the health of British Columbians."

About Rx&D

Rx&D is the association of leading research-based pharmaceutical companies dedicated to improving the health of Canadians through the discovery and development of new medicines and vaccines. Our community represents 15,000 men and women working for 50 member companies and invests more than $1 billion in research and development each year to fuel Canada's knowledge-based economy. Guided by our Code of Ethical Practices, our membership is committed to working in partnership with governments, healthcare professionals and stakeholders in a highly ethical manner.

SOURCE Canada's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies (Rx&D)

For further information: For further information: François Lessard, Communications, Telephone: 613.236.0455, E-mail: flessard@canadapharma.org

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Canada's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies (Rx&D)

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