New Nova Scotia Family Pharmacare Program Announced

Department of Health (To Jan. 11)

November 26, 2007 2:14 PM

A new program that will help Nova Scotians with the cost of prescription drugs was announced today, Nov. 26, by Premier Rodney MacDonald and Health Minister Chris d'Entremont.

"Our throne speech last week outlined safer and healthier communities as a priority to help us reach a new Nova Scotia, and this is a huge step in that direction," said Premier Rodney MacDonald. "We promised to help families facing financial hardship because of the high cost of prescription drugs and this universal drug plan will put prescription coverage within everyone's reach."

Nova Scotians who are eligible will benefit from the Nova Scotia Family Pharmacare program starting March 1, 2008. The program is available to all Nova Scotians and everyone is encouraged to enrol. Being in the program will give Nova Scotians peace of mind in case their medical needs change and they require prescription drugs. In some cases, these drugs can cost thousands of dollars.

"For many Nova Scotians, being healthy means relying on prescription drugs that are often costly. This program will help them afford the prescriptions they need to manage disease and avoid illness," said Mr. d'Entremont.

The program, which requires no premium or fees to enrol, will also have a cap on annual out-of-pocket costs for eligible drugs at a percentage of a family's income. It will provide the greatest benefit to those who need it the most.

The Family Pharmacare program will not affect existing private or public drug assistance plans such as those offered through the Department of Community Services.

"The Family Pharmacare program provides a safety net for Nova Scotians against extremely high drug costs, so they can focus on getting better," said Mr. d'Entremont.

Announced in the 2007-08 budget, government committed to design and implement the program by March 2008.

All residents with a valid Nova Scotia health card can enrol in the program. More information and enrollment forms are available on the government website at www.nspharmacare.ca or by calling toll-free 1-877-330-0323.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     Nova Scotian families will have improved access to

prescription drug coverage when the Nova Scotia Family Pharmacare

Program begins March 1st, 2008.

     Premier Rodney MacDonald says this universal drug plan will

put prescription coverage within everyone's reach.

     The program will not affect existing private or public drug

assistance plans such as those offered through the Department of

Community Services.

     Enrollment forms are now available online at W-W-W-dot N-S

pharmacare dot C-A .

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Media Contact: Pamela Hafey
              Department of Health
              902-424-3976
              E-mail: hafeypa@gov.ns.ca