Hike feared for prescription drug costs

Dear editor,

There has been a lot in the news lately about imminent signing of the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.

Dear editor,

There has been a lot in the news lately about imminent signing of the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

Prime Minister Harper is being lauded by commentators for making French cheeses more available to Canadian consumers.

Why are we not hearing about the incredible increase in prescription drug costs?

CETA is expected to extend patent protections on brand-name pharmaceutical drugs — making Big Pharma $1 billion to $3 billion richer with no benefit to Canada.

Of course, we’re not sure – as this corporate rights agreement has been negotiated behind closed doors and has never been debated by Parliament.

Already, one in nine British Columbians do not fill their prescriptions because they can’t afford to — and Prime Minister Harper is promising us savings in cellphone plans and cable TV packages.

This deal will have to be ratified by the provinces.

Let Premier Clark know that we need to be thinking of ways to reduce drug costs, not making them more expensive by granting longer patents and more monopoly protections to some of the richest pharmaceutical companies in the world.

Kathie Woodley,

Courtenay

 

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