The province of Newfoundland and Labrador currently has two very different mechanisms for funding provincially-listed cancer treatments:
- If it is an intravenous (IV) drug that needs to be administered in a hospital setting, it will be funded by the provincial government 100%.
- However, if it is something taken outside of hospital (oral or injectable), it is the patient's responsibility to pay for it.
This is unlike many other provinces in Canada where approved cancer drugs are funded 100% regardless of how the patient takes the drug.
Facts: How much do patients and their families pay in Newfoundland and Labrador?
For intravenous drugs listed on the provincial formulary, patients pay $0.
For take-home cancer drugs including oral cancer drugs and take-home injectables, the NLPD Assurance Plan calculates the out of pocket payments based upon the family’s net income. Out of pocket limits are set at 5%, 7.5%, or 10% of net family income provided the family income does not exceed $150,000 in total (at which point no assistance is given whatsoever).
For a family with total net income of $85,000, the out of pocket amount expected would be $8,500 per year (10% of net income). For details, and to calculate what your family would pay for a cancer drug costing $6,000 per month, see here:
NLPD Assurance Plan via http://www.parl.gc.ca/Content/LOP/ResearchPublications/prb0906-e.htm
What can you do?
- Learn more: watch the video, familiarize yourself with the issues on this website.
- Write, call, or visit your MHA to let them know that this arbitrary discrimination in how cancer drugs are funded needs to end. Many are completely unaware that the province treats intravenous and take-home cancer drugs so differently.
- Write to your provincial Health Minister.
- For a list of provincial MHAs in NL, click here: http://www.assembly.nl.ca/members/cms/membersdirectlines.htm
- For contact information for your Health Minister, click here: http://www.health.gov.nl.ca/health/department/minister.html
If you need any help, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our patient advocate volunteers will get back to you.
Please share with us any response you receive. We will be meeting with provincial representatives as we go forward with this campaign. And on behalf of all cancer patients who need this issue solved, THANK YOU.