Abstract

Ontario is a strong candidate for a comprehensive pharmacare program, given that it has a pre-existing public drug benefit program (the Ontario Drug Benefit Program [ODBP]). This paper outlines strategies from New Zealand's national pharmacare program (the Pharmaceutical Management Agency [PHARMAC]) and compares these strategies to other international examples. It is recommended that the ODBP engage in three strategies currently utilized by the PHARMAC to achieve significant cost savings and create potential to increase their insurance coverage: (i) strict budgeting; (ii) tendering and negotiating; and (iii) reference pricing.