Nanaimo MP hosts town hall on universal pharmacare

By Aaron Schulze
May 11, 2018 - 4:40pm

Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Sheila Malcolmson (middle) will co-host a town hall meeting about universal pharmacare on Saturday May 12.Ian Holmes/NanaimoNewsNOW

NANAIMO — The NDP wants the federal government to lower healthcare costs by implementing a unviersal pharmacare program, a message they're bringing to Nanaimo.

Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Sheila Malcolmson, along with the NDP's health critic Don Davies, will host a town hall meeting about universal pharmacare on Saturday, May 12 at Royal Canadian Legion Branch #256.

According to a letter from Malcolmson submitted to NanaimoNewsNOW, Canada is the only major country with a universal health care system that doesn't guarantee medication for its citizens.

"Too many Canadians are forced to choose between filling their fridge and filling their prescriptions," Malcolmson said.

A study from the Canadian Medical Association Journal in 2017 showed Canada had the second highest per-person cost of prescription medication of high income countries with universal healthcare.

The NDP claimed the Parliamentary Budget Officer's pharmacare report showed the federal government can extend prescription drug coverage for every Canadian and a universal pharmacare program would save the country between $4 and $11 billion.

Federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh raised the issue during a visit to Nanaimo in March.

The town hall takes place between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. and audience members will be able to ask questions.

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