Saturday, October 13, 2007

Rival Drug plans: Sask. Election.

The NDP plan is much more comprehensive while the Sask Party plan is not only targeted at certain age groups seniors and children but also has income limits for seniors. This will make administration more complicated. Of course the NDP plan will cost more but the millionaires and also the working poor not covered will have to pay anyway the only difference is whether they pay out of pocket or through taxes based upon ability to pay. The millionaires of course (or some of them) do not want to pay taxes that will end up helping the working poor pay their drug bills.

Here is the New Democrat Drug Plan.

NDP Unveils Universal Drug Plan
Published October 11, 2007
Premier Lorne Calvert today announced plans that will see Saskatchewan continue to lead the nation in building a stronger public health care system.

"An NDP government will build upon the success of the Seniors' Drug Plan, introducing a Universal Drug Plan so that no one will pay more than $15 per prescription for drugs in the Saskatchewan formulary," Calvert said. "We believe that a family's ability to pay should not determine whether they get the prescription drugs they need. Never again will anyone in Saskatchewan have to choose between paying for their rent or paying for their prescription."

Under the Universal Drug Plan, which would take effect July 1, 2008, a person requiring a common prescription for diabetes would save more than $70 for each prescription; those requiring blood pressure medication would save more than $42; and those needing a prescription for cholesterol would save more than $58 per prescription.

Calvert said while an NDP government believes working families should share in the benefits of a strong economy through improved health care, the Sask Party wants to weaken the public health care system. "The Sask Party will hide behind phrases like ‘efficiency review' and ‘health audit', but make no mistake - they cannot be trusted to protect public health care.

"Brad Wall opposed the new drug plan for seniors, which has saved our province's 115,000 seniors an average of $400 a year, calling the plan reckless and unsustainable. The Sask Party does not believe that our seniors and families should share in our prosperity. As we did with Medicare, an NDP government will continue to lead the nation in building a strong public health care system."

In addition to the Universal Drug Plan, Calvert said in the coming days, the NDP will unveil more innovative new ways to provide greater access to the public health care system, to reduce wait times and to improve patient services.

"Saskatchewan people have an important choice to make on November 7," Calvert said. "The NDP cares passionately about making life better for everyone in the province, and expanded prescription drug coverage means that no one will be unable to afford the prescription drugs they need.

"Brad Wall and the Sask Party oppose the seniors' drug plan. If you vote the Sask Party you put the Seniors' Drug Plan and the Universal Drug Plan at risk."

Now here is the Sask. Party drug plan:

Election 2007 News

Saskatchewan Party Helping Families With Responsible Prescription Drug Plan
Wall Would Help Families by Extending $15 Cap to Children
Friday - October 12, 2007
Brad Wall today said a Saskatchewan Party government will provide a financially responsible and sustainable alternative to the NDP’s desperate drug plan giveaway.

The Saskatchewan Party plan will assist young families by extending the $15 cap on seniors’ prescription drugs to also include children ages 14 and under.

“Our new plan will continue to cap the cost of drugs at $15 per prescription for seniors with net income of less than $64,043 a year and will extend this benefit to all children 14 and under,” Wall said. $64,043 is the income cut-off for seniors to be eligible to receive the federal age tax credit.

“We recognize that many seniors struggle with the burden of high prescription drug costs, but we also know that many families with young children share that burden and something should be done to help them as well,” Wall said.

“In some cases, a family’s monthly drug costs can be really high, for instance children with severe asthma or epilepsy. The Saskatchewan Party plan will bring those costs under control.”

Wall said that about 95 per cent of Saskatchewan seniors will continue to benefit from the $15 cap. The cost of extending the benefit to children will be offset by the savings from high-income seniors who no longer receive the benefit.

All Saskatchewan residents, including seniors, will continue to be eligible for the Special Support Program for High Drug Costs if their prescription drug costs exceed 3.4 per cent of their annual income.

Wall also announced that a Saskatchewan Party government will provide an additional $10 million per year to fund new drugs not currently covered under the provincial drug plan.

“Many seniors and others still face high drug costs because the prescriptions they need aren’t covered under the Drug Plan,” Wall said. “A Saskatchewan Party government will provide new funding to cover more prescription drugs.

“The Saskatchewan Party is offering a responsible and targeted alternative to the NDP’s reckless and irresponsible attempt to buy votes,” Wall said. “At the same time, a Saskatchewan Party government will focus our health care dollars and resources on reducing waiting lists and make sure Saskatchewan people get the health care they need when they need it.”

Click here for background information on the Saskatchewan Party's Prescription Drug Plan.


No comments: