Health minister disputes claim he sided with big pharma, interfered with drug price consultations – CBC

Review board ‘will never be subjected to political interference,’ Duclos said

Mar 01, 2023

Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos is pushing back against claims that he interfered with the work of Canada’s pharmaceutical pricing agency by asking it to delay reforms intended to bring down the price of patented drugs.

The allegations stem from a report in The Breach that said Duclos and associate assistant health deputy minister Eric Bélair sent letters to the Patented Medicines Price Review Board (PMPRB) late last year asking it to suspend the consultations it was holding on proposed guidelines for pricing.

“PMPRB is a totally independent organization. It is not subjected and it will never be subjected to political interference,” Duclos said Wednesday in Mississauga, Ont.

“They asked for my view as a health minister … I invited them to do the right amount of consultation so that this would be done in the more proper and most efficient and most speedy manner possible.”

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