P.E.I. aims to save $4M in drug costs
New legislation will make province payer of last resort
P.E.I. Health Minister Doug Currie says the province will save $4 million a year on drug costs by making private insurance pay out before the government does. He says the savings will be reinvested into drug plans including the new Catastrophic Drug Program.
The province has more than two dozen programs residents can apply to for assistance in paying for prescription drugs. The new Drug Cost Assistance Act makes the province the payer of last resort if someone with provincial drug coverage also has private insurance.
"Before these changes the province was stepping in if they were on the public program. Basically the insurance companies were off the hook," said Currie.
"This is a reinvestment of approximately $4 million that will be reinvested back into our provincial drug programs."
The new bill also paves the way for government to start charging premiums or annual fees as a requirement before residents can gain coverage under any of the programs. A spokesperson for the Department of Health said there are no immediate plans to start doing that.
Under the new law those caught trying to make fraudulent drug claims would also face much steeper penalties: fines of up to $10,000 and a year in jail compared to the current maximum fine of $500.
P.E.I. drug cost assistance programs
For more information on these programs, click here.
Catastrophic Drug Program
Children In-Care Program
Community Mental Health Program
Cystic Fibrosis Program
Diabetes Control Program
|Family Health Benefit Program|
|Financial Assistance Program||Growth Hormone Program|
|Hepatitis Program||High Cost Drugs Program|
|Immunization Program||Institutional Pharmacy Program|
|Intron A Program||Meningitis|
|Nursing Home Program||Nutrition Services Program|
|Phenylkentonuria (PKU) Program||Rheumatic Fever Program|
|Seniors Drug Cost Assistance Plan||Sexually Transmitted Diseases Program|
|Quit Smoking Program||Transplant Drug Program|
|Tuberculosis Program||Rabies Program|