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Pharmacare Tie-In

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​BCNU has now mailed cheques​ totalling over $1.2 million dollars to reimburse members who incurred out-of-pocket costs relating to their prescription drug coverage, who filed grievances and submitted the necessary documentation by the deadline. ​Going forward, BCNU will spend approximately $3.5 million dollars in the month of October to purchase certain specified drugs that members had previously been utilizing. 

​​Background

In the last round of collective bargaining, BCNU negotiated changes to the extended health care plan's drug coverage to include a Pharmacare tie-in. ​We did this in order to offset the projected increases to benefit costs (11% per year), so that we could continue to bargain for other improvements to the collective agreement in other areas, such as wage increases. We agreed to introduce a managed formulary, designed to control costs and ensure our members could continue to access the medications they needed (or equivalent alternatives). 

Within a month of the changes taking effect, members came forward to report that certain drugs that were to be covered as part of the Special Authority Program were not, and that they were being forced to pay out-of-pocket.

Following an industry-wide grievance filed on behalf of those affected​ by the changes to the existing drug plan (as outlined in the collective agreement), an arbitrator issued an award to help resolve key issues in the grievance.

Updated: 10/14/2014 1:09 PM

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