Home Workplace News Federal pharmacare bill passes third reading, covers essential meds like contraception and diabetes

Federal pharmacare bill passes third reading, covers essential meds like contraception and diabetes

by HR News Canada

The federal pharmacare bill has successfully passed its third reading in Parliament, a significant milestone in Canada’s journey toward universal coverage.

Unifor, Canada’s largest private sector union, expressed strong support for the bill, which aims to provide comprehensive access to essential medications for all Canadians.

“We are glad to see the pharmacare plan come to fruition as so many Canadians are in need of it,” said Lana Payne, Unifor national president. “With this bill, we are paving the way for a health care system where no Canadian has to worry about affording their medications.”

Coverage for essential medications

The Liberal/NDP pharmacare plan, introduced in February, outlines coverage for essential medications, including contraception and diabetes-related prescriptions and equipment. This plan seeks to fill existing gaps in Canada’s healthcare system and ensure equitable access to necessary medications, according to Unifor.

“This plan is especially significant for women, who often face greater barriers to accessing health care,” Payne said. “By including contraception and other vital medications, we are taking a critical step towards achieving gender equity in health care. This is not just about medication; it’s about justice and fairness for all.”

Unifor puts Quebec, Alberta in spotlight

Unifor has urged both federal and provincial governments to collaborate in making essential medications available nationwide. The union specifically called on the provinces of Alberta and Quebec to allocate any federal funds received towards pharmacare initiatives.

Unifor, which represents 320,000 workers across various industries, has been a staunch advocate for universal pharmacare, spearheading efforts such as the Pharmacare Now campaign. The union’s Reproductive Justice Now campaign also continues to push for expanded access to sexual and reproductive health care services.

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