NDP call for government to alleviate seniors’ prescription costs

With people only able to purchase a month’s worth of prescription medication at a time due to COVID-19, the NDP is calling for the government to provide relief to seniors and low-income people by ensuring government drug plans will cover the additional cost.

“The pandemic is revealing the challenges too many face when filling needed prescriptions,” said NDP Health critic Vicki Mowat. “People in this province shouldn’t be making decisions about whether they can afford to take their medication because of extra dispensing fees. It’s time the government puts people first and makes sure that those who can least afford additional costs are taken care of.”

To avoid stockpiling of medications, people in Saskatchewan are only able to fill one month of their prescription at a time. This means many are now paying additional fees at their pharmacy, increasing the cost from $25 to $75.

Alberta reduced the co-pay fee in seniors’ and non-group plans to $8 per prescription, from its previous level of $25. New Brunswick, Nova Scotia as well as Newfoundland and Labrador are also offering support to seniors. Manitoba is removing the one-month supply limit on prescription drugs that it set in place in March.

“For low-income people and seniors, this is a huge additional cost, without any additional income. People in Saskatchewan are on incomes that are stretched thin as it is and they can’t afford to have a government continue to let them down,” Mowat said.

Authorized by the chief official agent for the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party.