The Government of Nova Scotia is expanding the use of biosimilar medications in Nova Scotia Pharmacare programs. As of 3 February 2023, some original biologic medications won’t be covered by Pharmacare if a biosimilar version is approved and available, unless an exemption is granted.
To switch patients to biosimilars, prescribers need to:
Pharmacare can provide you with a list of your patients who may need to switch to a biosimilar medication. To receive this list, fill out the Patient List Request Form (PDF) and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax it to 902-428-3400.
A clinical support staff member is available to help you organize, reduce administrative burden and provide education where needed. To contact the clinical support staff, email email@example.com.
The following changes to biosimilar coverage apply:
Prescribers can apply for an exemption if a patient can’t switch to a biosimilar for clinical reasons. Fill out an Exception Status Drug Request Form (PDF) for patients who can’t switch and provide detailed clinical rationale for the exception.
If this exemption is not approved or the patient doesn’t qualify for an exemption, their coverage for the original biologic medication will end.
|Drug||Originator (switch from)||Biosimilar (switch to)||Indications (if applicable)|
adult ulcerative colitis
polyarticular juvenile Idiopathic arthritis
polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis
NovoRapid vials will be covered for those using insulin pumps, until compatibilities are established.
Lantus® cartridges will be covered for those 17 or younger who require ½ unit dosing.
The policy will apply to other medications on the Nova Scotia Formulary as new biosimilar medications are approved.
Department of Health and Wellness Clinical Support Staff
Toll-free phone: 1-800-563-8880
Hours: Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm