Understand the Issue

 

BACKGROUND

For decades, Americans with access to Canada travelled to brick-and-mortar Canadian pharmacies to fill their prescriptions. In fact, elected officials would often take buses of constituents across the border to do so, including Congressman Bernie Sanders of Vermont (now Senator Sanders), Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio, and many others.

The Internet has expanded access to many of these same pharmacies for Americans who don’t live close to the U.S.-Canadian border. Personal prescription importation from certified, trusted, and legitimate Canadian pharmacies has been used by millions of Americans for more than 15 years as a safe and affordable alternative to the exorbitant prescription drug prices in the U.S.

THE IMPACT OF HIGH DRUG PRICES

IMPACT ON PATIENTS

The high price of brand name drugs in the U.S. has created a serious health crisis and is a significant burden for the elderly and others on fixed incomes.

Millions of people, often the elderly with chronic health conditions, are either skipping doses, splitting pills, or forgoing medications completely. The high cost of daily prescription drugs often forces individuals to choose between their medications and gas, food, or even their mortgage. Patients who need medications to treat conditions from asthma to high cholesterol to arthritis pain are at the mercy of drug makers who can charge “whatever the market will bear.”

Importing prescription medications from safe, verified pharmacies in Canada provides a lifeline to those in need of affordable life-saving and health maintenance medications.

Americans facing ever-increasing medication costs often choose not to adhere to their prescription regimens. This is an unacceptable choice resulting in serious health consequences for patients and leading to increased costs for the healthcare system and taxpayers.

IMPACT ON CAREGIVERS

Caregivers – who are often family members – also face hard health care decisions, as they are responsible for the financial and physical administration of health care, including maintenance drugs.

In some cases, we know caregivers will pay out of their own pockets for prescriptions to ensure that their loved one can take their high-priced daily prescription medication, often placing a financial strain on other family members as well as the patient.

IMPACT ON THE HEALTHCARE SYSTEM

This is a burden to the U.S. healthcare system due to primary and secondary health issues created by non-adherence.

Many individuals who import their medications from licensed Canadian pharmacies are on Medicare and/or Medicaid. When these individuals cannot afford their health maintenance drugs, the resulting non-adherence snowballs into health complications that can easily result in otherwise avoidable hospitalizations. In turn, government healthcare programs – and thus American taxpayers – pick up the tab.

Big pharma claims that importing drugs from Canada undercuts their ability to recoup research and development costs necessary for developing treatments and medications. We do not believe that the elderly and patients living on fixed incomes should be responsible for ensuring that pharmaceutical companies reach and exceed their profit goals.

The exorbitantly high cost of prescription medications is an ongoing, serious health crisis for millions of Americans, they are desperate for relief and want the government to act.

THE SOLUTION

Credentialed online pharmacies are safe, providing compliant, safe medications for verified prescription medications.

As lawmakers struggle to address the issue of high drug prices, facing intense resistance from the pharmaceutical manufacturers, allowing personal prescription importation from Canada is the simplest, most immediate solution to provide Americans with reasonable access to safe, affordable prescription medications.

While we are pleased to see Congress and others putting forth options to address absurdly high drug prices, most proposals will take years to implement, if they move forward at all. On the other hand, Congress can provide relief today by allowing importation of personal-use medications from credentialed, verified Canadian pharmacies.

NOTE: If you’d like to play a more active role in fighting for this issue, please check out our Advocacy Guide below, which includes suggestions, checklists, templates – everything you need to fight for access to safe and affordable prescription medications. Advocacy Guide FINAL.docx