Guild interested to learn more about TPPA details

Published: Fri 31 Jul 2015 04:39 PM
Guild interested to learn more about TPPA details
The Pharmacy Guild of New Zealand (the Guild) is keen to learn more about how the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) will impact New Zealand’s health sector if it is accepted by the Government.
Guild Chief Executive, Lee Hohaia says “There has been much speculation about the impact of TPPA on New Zealand, especially following Prime Minister John Key’s recent acknowledgement that some medicine may cost more for New Zealand under TPPA.
“While it is difficult to comment on the issue without knowing the actual content of the agreement, the Guild’s main concern is that New Zealand’s health budget is spent in the most efficient and effective way to ensure positive health outcomes for all New Zealanders.
“We understand that the price New Zealand has to pay for medicine may increase due to the high probability that patents on medicine would be extended under the agreement. The Government has indicated that the financial benefits of TPPA would offset higher costs of medicine and patients would not be disadvantaged. We are pleased to see that this has been acknowledged and hope that further investment in the health sector will be a benefit of TPPA.
“In our current environment it is often a struggle to get more expensive medicine subsidised and we will also be interested to see the effect TPPA would have on this. We would hope that access to such medicine would be improved rather than reduced.
“To ensure there is no negative impact on patients and the pharmacy sector, we hope that PHARMAC would be allocated a larger budget to cover higher costs and that they will be able to continue to provide a wide range of affordable medicine to New Zealanders.
“We hope that any decision made regarding TPPA gives careful consideration to its impact on patients and the community pharmacy sector. It is important that all costs incurred by pharmacies are met and that the distribution of medicine is funded fairly and adequately so that pharmacy is not left out of pocket and patients can continue to access valuable pharmacy services in their communities.”

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