At first it might appear counterintuitive, but making pharmaceuticals a free component of our healthcare plan could actually save Canadians $10.7 billion, according to a study released yesterday by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

“There are important savings to be made by increasing patients’ choices,” said report author and Carleton University Prof. Marc-André Gagnon. “It is not something that can be done with individual private coverage.”

After comparing the current provincial drug and private drug plans, the study shows that they are very inefficient and calculates the savings potential of a publicly funded universal drug plan.