Wednesday, March 10, 2004

From the Toronto Star:
Drug firms fight Web sales
Despite a slowdown in cross-border Internet prescription drug sales at the end of last year, pharmaceutical companies remain worried the practice will hurt their bottom lines — and crucial research.

"In the long run, what it really does is just move profits from the pharmaceutical manufacturer to the retailer and wholesaler, so it really doesn't produce sustainable consumer savings over time," Robert Freeman, executive director of public policy at AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP, said in an interview at a conference on the issue yesterday in Toronto.

Kerry backs Canadian drugs
Democratic presidential challenger John Kerry has promised Americans unfettered access to cheaper Canadian prescription drugs, bringing the contentious issue to the forefront of an acrimonious U.S. election campaign.

Yesterday at a rally in Evanston, Ill., Kerry stood with Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, a leading proponent of drug reimportation, and an elderly couple who have sued the U.S. government for denying them cheaper Canadian medications.

From the Calgary Herald:
Province favouring cheap drug strategy
To cut costs, the province will consider a policy of insuring only the cheapest drugs available when sick or injured patients get their first prescription from a doctor, Alberta Health Minister Gary Mar said Tuesday.

"If an Aspirin works, perhaps an Aspirin is what you'll be on," he said. "If it doesn't work for you, you move on to increasingly higher-cost drugs."

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