Friday, October 22, 2004


If some Canadians have their way, the drug reimportation issue will be moot:
Canadians will find prescription drugs more expensive — if they can find them at all — unless the federal government stops Internet pharmacies from catering to Americans, a health coalition warns.

Several groups representing pharmacists, patients and seniors called on the federal government yesterday to ban fast-growing exports of Canadian prescription drugs before it's too late.

Demand from Americans, fed up with high drug prices at home, is already causing drug shortages in some areas, said Louise Binder of the Canadian Treatment Action Council, one of several groups in the coalition.

"We have had a growing sense of alarm that is turning to stark fear," Binder told a news conference, predicting "a full-scale disaster for this country" if the problem goes unchecked.

"Our system would quickly be overwhelmed and Canadians would pay the price for our government allowing the U.S. to raid our medicine cabinet."
* * *
The whole idea of reimportation strikes me as exceedingly odd. Who on earth would try to demand reimportation as to any other product? "I refuse to buy American automobiles directly; what I want is to buy an automobile that has been shipped to Canada and then back here." The idea makes no sense.

Except, that is, because Canada has price controls on drugs, while we don't. But when there are price controls, the natural economic consequence is shortage, as seen in the above article.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post, Stuart. Linked at my blog:

Peg K

5:38 PM  
Blogger Dick Tatlow said...

I've been buying some drugs from Canada for about two years. (1) Very few drugs are that much cheaper to warrant the additional shipping costs. (2) Publicity and local government plans to "bulk purchase" drugs will surely "kill the Canadian goose that lays low prices drugs". (3) The "Drug Trains" from Florida to Canada to buy drugs are about the dumbest idea I've heard of in years! They certainly can't be cost justified when compared with internet purchasing.

4:04 PM  

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