Toronto, April 20, 2021 – The following is a statement by Jim Keon, President of the Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA), in response to Federal Budget 2021.
“The Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA) welcomes the federal government’s recognition that a stronger life sciences sector and vaccine production can contribute to a more resilient Canada and healthier Canadians. CGPA member companies and the 11,000 Canadians that work in our industry play a vital role in Canada’s economy and the sustainability of our health-care system by providing safe and effective cost-saving medicines.
While CGPA is supportive of the proposed financial investments intended to strengthen Canada’s life sciences sector, this is only one element of what is needed to attract and sustain long-term investments. A comprehensive life sciences strategy that reflects the regulatory, market and other needs of the sector is needed to make Canada a more attractive and globally competitive place for investment to ensure a more robust and resilient domestic industry.
More attention and support must also be given to the challenges facing the generic medicines sector which provides the vast majority of the medicines used every day to treat Canadians suffering from COVID-19 and so many other critical ailments.
In June 2020 CGPA released its Blueprint for a Sustainable Supply of Prescription Medicines for Canadians, which identifies measures to enhance Canada’s existing pharmaceutical manufacturing capacity and domestic capabilities, create a more resilient pharmaceutical supply chain, ensure Canada’s role within a well-functioning global supply chain, and encourage the establishment of a more coordinated approach to equipping Canada for future health emergencies.
The COVID-19 pandemic has served as a wake-up call for governments, health-care professionals and the broader public on the importance of having a robust and resilient domestic pharmaceutical industry. Ensuring a sustainable supply of prescription medicines for Canadians must be a priority for federal and provincial governments as they consider the economic and health policies that will guide Canada into the future.
CGPA and its member companies are committed to working with governments and other stakeholders to apply the lessons that we have learned from the pandemic to make the domestic industry and prescription drug supply chain even stronger and more secure for Canadians.
Generic prescription medicines are dispensed to fill more than 73 percent of all prescriptions in Canada but account for less than 20 percent of the $32-billion Canadians spend annually on prescription medicines. Compared with many countries that rely solely on importing their prescription medicines, Canada is fortunate to have extensive domestic generic pharmaceutical manufacturing capacity and capabilities. This is particularly important in times of health crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic.”
About the Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association
The Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA) represents Canada’s generic pharmaceutical industry. The industry plays an important role in controlling health-care costs in Canada. Generic drugs are dispensed to fill more than 73 percent of all prescriptions but account for account for less than 20 percent of the $32-billion Canadians spend annually on prescription medicines.
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