Government of Canada partners with provinces and territories to lower cost of pharmaceuticals

News Release

Joins pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance to help make drugs more affordable for Canadians

January 19, 2015  – Ottawa, ON – Health Canada

The Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Health, today announced that the Government of Canada’s federal drug plans will join the pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance (pCPA). The Alliance negotiates on behalf of provinces and territories to lower prices for Canadians on brand name drugs and works to reduce the cost of generic medications as well.

To date, the pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance has completed more than 89 negotiations on brand name drugs and achieved price reductions on 14 generic drugs, resulting in combined savings of more than $490 million annually.

Combining the negotiating power of federal, provincial and territorial governments achieves greater savings for all publicly funded drug programs, increases access to clinically effective drug treatment options and improves consistency of pricing and coverage criteria across Canada.

Today’s announcement is an important component of the federal commitment to reduce prescription drug costs and improve access to pharmaceuticals through cooperation with provincial and territorial governments. It is an important step in line with the Government of Canada’s development of a new health accord.

Quick Facts

  • Through federal health plans, the Government of Canada provides drug benefits to First Nations and Inuit, the RCMP, the Canadian Forces, veterans, federal inmates and refugee protection claimants – for a total of $630 million in drug-related spending in 2014.
  • Canada joins Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ontario, Quebec, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, and the Yukon as a participating member of the Alliance.


“I am impressed and encouraged by the cost savings that the pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance has achieved to date and I am looking forward to working together to negotiate better prices for prescription drugs. As you know, making prescription drugs more affordable for Canadians is an important part of the Government of Canada’s commitment to strengthen Canada’s publicly-funded universal health care system.”  

The Honourable Jane Philpott
Minister of Health

“We welcome the federal government’s participation in our pan-Canadian Pharmaceutical Alliance. The added buying power from the federal drug plans will make the Alliance even stronger, helping to expand the excellent work already accomplished by the provinces and territories to lower prescription drug costs in Canada.”

The Honourable Terry Lake
British Columbia Health Minister

Associated Links


Office of Jane Philpott
Minister of Health
(613) 957-0200

Media Relations
Health Canada
(613) 957-2983

Public Inquiries
(613) 957-2991
1-866 225-0709

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