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Access to Medications

Joint Replacement Wait Times

The Arthritis Society believes it is essential that people living with arthritis have access to appropriate treatment and care. As there is no cure, medications play a vital role in helping many people living with arthritis manage their condition. The right treatment plan can significantly improve quality of life and allow people living with arthritis to lead near normal lives. However, finding the right treatment is often a matter of trial and error. What works for one person may not for another. It is critical there be a broad range of treatment options.

The Conference Board Report “Accessing Necessary Arthritis Medications, A Pan-Canadian Analysis” highlights the challenges and obstacles Canadians living with arthritis face in accessing their medically necessary medications.

As governments look for more cost-effective treatment options, the Arthritis Society believes biosimilars [418 kB]have a role to play in the care and management of inflammatory arthritis. Biosimilars provide additional choices for those living with inflammatory arthritis and have the potential to lower health care costs and increase access to treatment.

The Arthritis Society supports the call for a national pharmacare plan and calls on all levels of government, insurance companies, the pharmaceutical industry, employers and other relevant stakeholders to collaboratively work together to ensure people living with arthritis have equitable, affordable and timely access to medically necessary treatment wherever they live in Canada. It is vital that any effort to move forward on national pharmacare must be informed and advised by strong patient participation focused on addressing urgent patient needs.