Macular Degeneration Support Canada polled all Canadian provinces as to whether they were going to include Lucentis as part of their drug formularies. New Brunsick is the latest to reply as to their coverage for macular degeneration treatments.
In March 2008, the Common Drug Review committee made a recommendation that ranibizumab (Lucentis) be included as part of the drug plan formulaires across Canada. Currently, only Ontario and Quebec has included coverage for this drug as a treatment of wet macular degeneration.
On April 27, 2008, all provincial government health departments in Canada were contacted through the mechanisms identified on their website.
Macular Degeneration Support Canada asked the following questions:
- Given that the Common Drug Review Committee has recommended provincial health care systems provide coverage for the drug Lucentis as a treatment of macular degeneration, does your province provide coverage for this drug?
- If coverage for Lucentis is not provided, what treatment options do you pay for and provide for patients suffering from Macular Degeneration
The province of New Brunwick had the following response.
The Canadian Expert Drug Advisory Committee’s (CEDAC) recommendation that ranibizumab (Lucentis) be listed on Federal/Provincial/Territorial drug plan formularies has been received. However, the listing decision for the New Brunswick Prescription Drug Program has not yet been finalized. Verteporfin (Visudyne) is covered for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) for New Brunswick residents. Some ophthalmologists may opt to use bevacizumab (Avastin®) as their drug of choice for AMD and charge the patient for the drug.
The only Canadian provinces to reply indicating that Lucentis was covered as a treatment for the wet macular degeneartion have been Ontario and Quebec.
Nova Scotia and Newfoundland have not yet provided a response.