Tuesday, 1 June 2021

PHARMAC petition tabled at Parliament


A petition with more than 100,000 signatures has today been tabled at Parliament after being accepted by ACT’s Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Brooke van Velden.

“This petition shows how strongly New Zealanders feel about overhauling PHARMAC and how let down they feel by the Government,” says Ms van Velden.

“Hundreds of people came to Parliament last month and lay down in the rain to make their point.

“Patient Voice Aotearoa has done an amazing job of highlighting how let down New Zealanders are by PHARMAC and the Government. It was an honour to be able to present this petition on their behalf.

“We need a better solution to how we fund medicines in New Zealand. It’s heart-breaking that people have to go overseas to have their treatments funded.

“The Government had a chance to put this right in last month’s budget but it didn't. As a country we deserve better.

“ACT was the first party to call for a review of PHARMAC, sadly when the review was announced, funding was left out.

“We need to look at the bigger picture. What is the cost of someone with Crohn’s Disease having multiple surgeries and hospital stays, not being able to work, having to claim ACC or welfare and the cost to them personally versus PHARMAC funding drugs that would keep them well.

“ACT continues to call for PHARMAC funding to be reviewed. It’s what’s fair and right for people who are suffering from chronic pain and diseases.

“It’s time to fix this systemic problem instead of having ill people cross their fingers and hope the best at budget time each year.”