Liberals table bill paving way for future pharmacare program a day before deadline

OTTAWA — Health Minister Mark Holland tabled a long−awaited bill this morning in the House of Commons that is meant to pave the way for national pharmacare.

The bill is a key element of the Liberals’ political pact with the New Democrats and comes one day before a negotiated deadline to introduce legislation.

The two parties had been in a stalemate for months over the wording and the number of drugs they planned to launch with.

The NDP announced they finally clinched the negotiations late last week.

The bill is expected to lay out the principles that would underpin a potential federal pharmacare plan in the future.

The government is also expected launch an initial program that would include coverage for contraceptives, insulin and diabetic supplies such as devices for glucose monitoring.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 29, 2024.

Laura Osman, The Canadian Press