The Better Pharmacare Coalition (BPC) consists of 28
chronic-disease-specific non-profit organizations and registered charities
that represent more than two million patients and their caregivers in BC.
Since 1997 the BPC has been effectively advocating for appropriate and timely
coverage to evidence-based prescription medications and health products through the
BC PharmaCare program. Today, our goal remains to advocate for access to medications
as well as ensuring that health policy decisions focus on patient needs: the pursuit of
cost-effectiveness should not cause harm to patients.

Friday, February 16, 2018 (Vancouver): Elimination of deductibles for low-income families (as of January 2019)1 as well as the addition of five new medications to the BC PharmaCare formulary2 are positive first steps from the BC Ministry of Health and leadership at BC PharmaCare toward addressing access to medications issues faced by patients. It is worth noting, however, that much work remains to be done to chip away at the barriers still present for some patients seeking treatment for their chronic diseases in BC. (read more...)

BC lags behind other provinces & territories:

Great summary video comparing public healthcare spending in BC to other provinces and territories in Canada via This video highlights a significant lack of spending on prescription drug coverage by public healthcare in BC through analysis of publicly available data.

Please share how a lack of and/or changes to drug coverage by Pharmacare have affected you or your loved ones.

Reference Drug Program: A Patient Perspective


The Better Pharmacare Coalition (BPC) wants to give patients and the general public the "straight goods" on Reference Drug Program ("RDP"). Under RDP programs and tools, such as reference drug pricing, drug plans reimburse the cost of the reference drug or drugs in a medication class. Most often, this is the most inexpensive drug in a class.

These policy changes potentially will adversely affect thousands of patients, in particular, our most vulnerable patient populations: the elderly and low-income. Changing a stabilized patient's medication, strictly based on a government medication-pricing scheme with cost containment as the prime consideration, is contrary to evidence-based medical practice. Canadian patient organizations fully support a 'patients first' approach, and so should government. Cost containment policies should preserve and uphold the intent of a health care system to deliver precision medicine and respect the complexity of therapy choices being made between patients and their physicians.

British Columbia continues to be the only province in Canada that supports a Reference Drug Program. But other public and now private drug plans are increasingly using RDP style programs to curb or cut prescription medication reimbursement costs.

To learn the essential facts on reference drug programs and what their implementation could mean to you, take a few minutes to read the information. Your health could depend on it.

Continue reading...

What's New
January 15, 2017
Share Your Stories

July 5, 2016
Reference Drug Program: A Patient Perspective

February 12, 2016
British Columbians' grave concerns over expansion of BC government's Reference Drug Program

February 9, 2016
Better Pharmacare Coalition poll reveals British Columbians oppose changes to planned expansion to BC government's Reference Drug Program

November 28, 2013
Canadian PKU & Allied Disorders Inc. Announces B.C.'s decision to fund medical foods to protect against brain-threatening disease

November 24, 2013
Bulk Drug Purchasing Is Too Good to Be True

August 13, 2013
Tread carefully on bulk drug purchases

August 9, 2013
Pharmacare no panacea for health care costs

May 12, 2013
Liberal Party of BC Response

May 7, 2013
Green Party of BC Response

May 7, 2013
New Democratic Party of BC Response

April 19, 2013
BPC letter to candidates

April 19, 2013
BPC survey for candidates

BPC Members
The BPC is an alliance of provincial and national not-for-profit organizations. More on our members.

If you, or a loved one that you care for, have experienced an access to medication issue, please share your story with us.

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