Monday, December 01, 2003

From the Globe and Mail:
U.S. Medicare bill won't be a cure
Canada's cheaper drug prices have become a central issue in the U.S. health care debate.

Congress dropped a plan to legalize the importation of Canadian prescription drugs.
It was also no surprise that the Republican-controlled Congress shunned price controls in drafting the bill.

At the same time, Congress completely ignored the main reason that Canadian drug prices are substantially lower -- the buying clout of government health plans.

There's a common misconception in the United States that Canada's drug price control regime is why Canadian prices are so much cheaper. Far more important is the fact that governments in Canada exploit their size as buyers to become the price-setter in the market.

From the Charleston (WV) Gazette:
Jackson proposes state prescription drug plan
The state of West Virginia could buy wholesale prescription drugs from the United States, Canada and other countries and distribute them to local pharmacies to sell under a plan proposed Sunday by Democratic gubernatorial candidate Lloyd Jackson.

Jackson said he would create a nonprofit wholesale drug program within the state Public Employees Insurance Agency. The lower-cost drugs could be sold to any state resident, not just state employees.

From the Topeka (Kan) Capital Journal:
Smoke Screen -- Stop the scare tactics (editorial)
In a report issued this week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration admitted it cannot identify a single American who has been injured or killed by drugs bought from licensed Canadian pharmacies.

You read that right.

Not one.

OK, we know we run a risk when we say "none," but it does point out one of the fundamental flaws in the arguments against getting drugs from Canada: They aren't, as has been alleged, necessarily dangerous or adulterated.

From CBC Calgary:
Shortage of insulin worries diabetics
A shortage of a particular brand of insulin has left some Calgary pharmacy shelves empty for weeks and has some diabetics seeking alternative medication.

Drug stores around the country haven't been able to get "Humulin N" and Humulog insulin from their suppliers.

Eli Lily Canada, which produces the brand, says a sudden increase in demand caused the shortage.

Province orders more flu vaccine
The seasonal outbreak of the flu has created a run on the flu vaccine.

The provincial government has put in an order for more while private pharmacies are having trouble getting enough to meet the demand.

From the Harrison (Ark) Daily Times:
Harrison native fighting the feds
After an October court ruling shutting down RX Depot stores in Oklahoma, Harrison native David Peoples told of turning away an elderly couple from his Tulsa, Okla. storefront.

"The wife turned to the husband and asked 'Honey, where are we going to go now?'" said Peoples, the company's chief operating officer.

No comments: