Once again the Ontario government is meddling with generic drug prices in a vain attempt to save a few bucks. Having dug itself into an enormous fiscal hole, the province just announced it will further lower the prices it pays for the 10 best-selling generic prescription medicines to 20 per cent of their brand-name equivalents, down from the current 25 per cent.
The Alberta government has just released the second phase of the provincial Pharmaceutical Strategy. The plan calls for decreasing public reimbursement rates for new generic drugs from 75 per cent of the price of the previously patented brand-name drug to 45 per cent. In addition, the government intends to negotiate lower prices for current generic drugs. The annual savings are projected to be up to $50 million for new generic drugs and $150 million for generic drugs already on the market.