Alberta to withdraw from national pharmacare program, says health minister

By: 600011 On: Feb 28, 2024, 1:28 PM


Alberta Health Minister Adriana LaGrange says the province wants to withdraw from the national pharmacare program. LaGrange said Alberta plans to opt out of the program if the federal government pursues the National Pharmacare program and instead accept a per capita share of funding for its provincial health care system.

The federal NDP announced on Friday that it had reached an agreement with the Liberals to introduce pharmacare framework legislation. The legislation will reportedly be introduced this week. If the deal materializes, every Canadian with a HealthCard will be allowed free diabetes medication and birth control procedures. Diabetes medications can cost hundreds of dollars a month, depending on the level of health-care coverage.

The greatest concern of health care advocates is those without proper coverage. So there is concern that opting out of the national scheme will leave some people behind. LaGrange says they will not allow the federal government to politically choose what coverage to make available to the people of Alberta based on issues.

Alberta has also announced plans to withdraw from the program. Nova Scotia and New Brunswick said they were awaiting details before deciding whether to join the program.