More than 15,000 people in Kawartha Lakes do not have adequate prescription drug coverage. Far too many of our fellow citizens with a needed prescription can’t afford to get the medicine, or they ration the prescription in ill-advised ways. Not filling a prescription (or rationing incorrectly) due to the price of medications is something experts call “cost-related non-adherence (CRNA).” That’s a fancy way of describing people who can’t afford to take their drugs properly, if it at all. And the number of people who are forced to do this is staggering, because of the lack of a national Pharmacare system.
A 2015 survey found that “24 per cent of Ontarians reported that they or a member of their household did not take their medications as prescribed, or missed medications, due to cost.” Given that, according to the CMAJO, “drugs for mental health conditions were the most commonly reported drug class for cost-related non-adherence.” It’s clear that prescription drug cost is a major problem, not just nationally, but locally.