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(VIDEO) Wilson asks government about funding for cystic fibrosis medication

(November 21, 2019) Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson continues to call on the government to fund life-saving medications for children with cystic fibrosis, including two young boys from Tottenham. Wilson raised the issue with the Health Minister in question period today.

 

“The ministry claims Ontario is providing coverage for Orkambi for pediatric cystic fibrosis patients on an exceptional case-by-case basis. Yet, not a single patient in Ontario has qualified for access,” said Wilson. “Will the minister adjust the prescribing criteria for these lifesaving drugs to allow doctors and not bureaucrats to allow access?”

 

The Health Minister, Christine Elliott, explained that the matter is a priority for her Ministry. She also noted that she is meeting with cystic fibrosis advocates next week and hoped to have a solution soon. Wilson and Elliott went through a similar battle for Beeton resident Madi Vanstone five years ago for the drug Kalydeco, which Wilson mentioned in the supplementary.

 

“As you know, Minister, when we were in opposition, some five years ago, we went through this very same process for the drug Kayldeco…I think what we’ve learned since then is the fundamental root of this problem was never addressed,” said Wilson. “…so I would encourage the Minister to keep this as a priority, to work as quickly as possible to help put Canada on the map, make Ontario a leader and provide these life saving drugs to cystic fibrosis patients.”

 

Elliott recognized the seriousness of the issue and explained that the Ministry is in conversations with Vertex, the drug’s manufacturer. She reiterated that she hoped to have a satisfactory solution soon for both Orkambi and other cystic fibrosis medications still to go through the process with Health Canada.

 

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