Coverage far from adequate

I recently attended an all-candidates forum for the two federal ridings in Kelowna. 

I took special notice of one position taken by the two local Conservative candidates, Dan Albas and Tracy Gray.  

On the topic of health-care coverage for medications, both Albas and Gray stated that 95% of Canadians have such coverage. A Conservative government would seek out and help the remaining 5%.  

The idea that 95% of Canadians have adequate coverage is certainly not true. 

A brochure produced by the National Association of Federal Retirees stated: “Canadians consistently pay among the highest prices (in the world) for prescription drugs. Twenty per cent of Canadians have inadequate coverage to meet their needs. One in four households in Canada can’t afford to fill their prescriptions.” 

The brochure went on to argue the benefits of a universal, public pharmacare program, which could reduce costs substantially by negotiating with drug companies.  

In opposing a national pharmacare program, Albas and Gray were merely echoing their national leaders. But why is the Conservative Party misrepresenting this vitally important issue? Is the party siding with the big drug companies, who fight to keep prices high?

Conservatives always want to lower taxes. But lower taxes mean lower services. Some of those services make the difference between life and death.

Flo Masson

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