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The Nova Scotia Teachers’ Pension Plan returned 6.78 per cent in 2020, increasing net assets to $5.519 billion, but falling short of the policy benchmark of 7.96 per cent. The plan did outperform the actuarial assumed rate of return of 5.70 per cent.  “Like many pension plans across the country impacted by COVID-19, we saw […]

Drug pricing reforms may impact Canadians’ access to medications

Despite concerns Canadian drug prices are skyrocketing, the Patented Medicines Price Review Board, Canada’s price regulator, has ensured costs for patented drugs haven’t increased more than the Canadian Consumer Price Index in close to 30 years, said Wayne Critchley, Global Public Affairs’ senior associate of health and life sciences, during Benefits Canada’s Face to Face […]

A recent Telus Health comparison of a drug’s cost effectiveness when calculated from the private versus the public-payer perspective demonstrated clearly that the private-payer perspective matters when assessing the value of a medication, explained Dr Nina Lathia, pharmacist, and health economist, at Benefits Canada’s Face to Face Drug Plan Management Forum on Dec. 9, 2020. […]

Specialty drug prior authorization a useful tool for plan sponsors

Analysis by Telus Health found specialty drugs have grown from 11 per cent of total private drug plan claims costs in 2008 to 30 per cent in 2019 and require effective management to ensure sustainability of health benefits plans, said Suzanne Lepage, private health plan strategist, during a session at Benefits Canada’s Face to Face […]

Employers balancing benefits costs and employee well-being: survey

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, Canadian employers are balancing the need to reduce benefits costs while focusing on employee well-being, according to a new survey by Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. Just over half (55 per cent) of respondents said controlling costs is their top benefits-related challenge this year, with many considering measures such as variable cost […]

  • By: Staff
  • November 25, 2020 November 25, 2020
  • 08:30
Group health plan costs expected to rise in 2021: report

The costs of employer-provided health plans in Canada are expected to rise seven per cent next year, outpacing general inflation by more than five per cent, according to a new report by Aon Canada. Contributing factors include higher drug prices, the impact of non-communicable health risks and the continued introduction of new and expensive therapies. Indeed, […]

  • By: Staff
  • October 29, 2020 October 29, 2020
  • 15:15
Cost of employer medical benefits to rise 7.2% in 2021: report

The costs of employer medical benefits around the globe are forecasted to rise 7.2 per cent in 2021, outpacing general inflation by five per cent, according to a new medical trends report by Aon. “There is still a significant amount of uncertainty regarding COVID-19’s impact on deferred treatments and long-term health care,” said Tim Nimmer, Aon’s […]

  • By: Staff
  • October 19, 2020 October 19, 2020
  • 08:45

With employers and employees still suffering through the limbo of the coronavirus pandemic, Wednesday’s throne speech clarified how the federal government plans to continue to support Canadians. In her speech, Governor General Julie Payette said the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy will be extended into 2021. She also said the government intends to shift away from emergency benefits […]

Over the past four years, total drug costs adjudicated by HBM+ have risen from about $1.2 billion to $1.5 billion, while the number of claimants has increased from 1.7 million to more than two million. The inaugural drug trends and strategic insights report by the health benefits manager, a division of Green Shield Canada, examined drug […]

  • By: Staff
  • September 18, 2020 November 17, 2020
  • 15:00

For many Canadians, quality vision is an ability taken for granted until we experience impairment. Whether it’s a prescription change, eye strain from our increasingly screen-centric work environments or a disease that gradually damages sight, the ability to access vision care when it’s required considerably enables our ability to perform on a daily basis. Vision loss and vision […]