One difference between Canadian and American health care is that the US government allows research-based drug makers to advertise the benefits of their medicines to patients, but the Canadian government outlaws this freedom of speech. Unfortunately, the Canadian Medical Association Journal (the Canadian equivalent of the Journal of the American Medical Association) has encouraged Canadas government to maintain this restriction.
Canada's Drug Price Paradox: The Unexpected Losses Caused by Government Interference in Pharmaceutical Markets
Generic Drugopoly: Why Non-patented Prescription Drugs Cost More in Canada than in the United States and Europe
The government of Manitoba has embarked on an ill-advised industrial policy that will not only put Canadians health at risk without improving employment or economic growth in the province, but also violates the principles of free trade as well.
The policy in question is the governments encouragement of Internet-based, mail-order pharmacies that send lower-priced Canadian prescription drugs to American patients in violation of U.S. law.
Worried about rising expenditures for prescription drugs, many states are employing preferred lists to encourage doctors to prescribe older, lower-priced drugs and forego the latest, more expensive medicines.
If Congress succeeds in passing a Medicare prescription drug benefit this year, the debate over preferred drug lists - now raging in numerous states - is likely to explode onto the national stage.
The lists - also known as formularies - are, whether we like it or not, a form of rationing. Ask any Canadian.