Arthritis Consumer Experts’ 10th Annual Arthritis Medications Report Card and Medications Guide: The changing landscapes of reimbursement for arthritis medications in Canada
Arthritis Consumer Experts (ACE) has released its 10th Annual JointHealth™ Arthritis Medications Report Card and Medications Guide – the reliable, quick reference tool to help you evaluate where your province ranks in terms of providing reimbursement for medications to treat inflammatory forms of arthritis.
Commenting on the changing landscape for reimbursement of arthritis medications, ACE President, Cheryl Koehn stated: “Any new pharmaceutical policy that promises to deliver significant drug plan savings must do so without compromising patient safety and efficacy. ACE has also consistently advocated that any drug plan cost savings related to changes in policy that affect arthritis medication reimbursement access should be reinvested back to drug formulary budgets to support the listing of new arthritis medicines and other non-medication related initiatives to improve models of arthritis care such as creating rheumatology nursing billing codes.”
The JointHealth™ Arthritis Medications Report Card and Medications Guide gives you information on the most commonly prescribed medications for inflammatory types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis, psoriatic arthritis or juvenile idiopathic arthritis.
In this JointHealth™ insight, topics covered include:
- The changing landscapes of reimbursement for arthritis medications in Canada
- The federal health department consultation on medication pricing regulations
- The essential drugs program initiative in British Columbia
- The Children and Youth Pharmacare plan in Ontario
- Medication policies and politics in Canada
About the Report Card
Arthritis Consumer Expert’s Annual JointHealth™ Arthritis Medications Report Card is Canada’s only independent patient organization evaluation of public reimbursement access to arthritis medications. Depending on where they live, Canadians living with an inflammatory arthritis may have fewer treatment options or have to “jump through more hoops” to qualify for reimbursement for the medication prescribed by their specialist. The Report Card is designed to help Canadians evaluate where their province ranks in terms of providing reimbursement for medications for inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis, psoriatic arthritis or juvenile idiopathic arthritis.
The Report Card ranks twelve publicly funded medication formularies based on the number of medically necessary arthritis medications they list out of a possible 20 medication treatments. Formularies are awarded one point for each case-by-case (CBC) listing, three-quarters of a point for a listing that has overly restrictive criteria (ORC), and no points for “Declined” listings or files remaining “Under Review”. In some cases, information about a medication was unavailable. Where this lack of transparency occurred, ACE put “Unknown” and did not award any points.
JointHealth™ Arthritis Medications Report Card Highlights:
- ACE monitors advanced therapy disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (or DMARDs) used to treat the most common types of inflammatory arthritis: biologic response modifier (originator or “boDMARDs” and biosimilar or “bsDMARDs”) and targeted synthetic molecule (tsDMARDs)
- Saskatchewan and Ontario share the number one rank in the Report Card, while last year’s number one ranked province, Quebec, is ranked number three, along with Alberta
- Provinces that most improved their ranking include:
Saskatchewan (1st in 2017; 4th in 2016)
Alberta (3rd in 2017; 7th in 2016)
New Brunswick (5th in 2017; 8th in 2016)
- Provinces whose ranking declined include:
Quebec (1st in 2016; 3rd in 2017)
British Columbia (2nd in 2016; 5th in 2017)
Prince Edward Island (6th in 2016; 9th in 2017)