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Article 5: Caught between a rock and a hard place


Date: January 20, 2017
Medications: idiopathic high bp - no CAD
City: New Westminster

I am 58- idiopathic high bp - no CAD (just in case people feel like judging - very active -hbp just because) -- on Telmisartan (ARB) and amlodipine for 4 years successfully very out of control with multiple hospitalizations and visits to multiple cardiologists until sorted out in 2012 in order to have ARB (Telmisartan) recognized by pharmacare I need to prove Ramapril which is not an ARB but an ACE

Doesn't work for the same job ACE is a toxic drug I have refused to take - and won't do the same thing anyhow but in the interests of lowering my ever rising drug costs - I asked to try Ramapril - when I filled the prescription it was 3 x the cost of the ARB.

So - let's, see I cannot have the ARB recognized unless I prove a much higher cost drug not even in the same class ACE - doesn't do the same job - wtf!!!!?? and risk my health to try it - so I tossed the Ramapril after spending $99 for the two months and will eat the cost of Telmisartan. Now I have out of control arrhythmia - necessitating the addition of Eliquis - blood thinner and a rate control medication.

So my drug costs are even higher - I have a special authority for Eliquis because I can prove that I'm not stable on Warfarin - and even if not I'd pay the $130 a month so as not to be poisoned.

I was on for 4 months in 2010 for a blood clot and it was hideous. So - caught between a rock and hard place - I will die with probably $20,000 owing on a line of credit hopefully 30 years from now in order to pay for my prescriptions.

No other choice and now my income has gone down a bit - oh well my deductible is $1400 a month but I cannot get what I am taking recognized - so my costs remain the same out of pocket. No way to win with Pharmacare.

Its a boondoggle - a grand make-work project. You didn't mention the issues around high cost versions of other drugs, such as Sivem Fluoxetine - being only covered 25% by Pharmacare - even with special authority and documented evidence the other versions are toxic to the patient.

They tried to refuse to cover in late November for my daughter's prescription - with the special authority in place - after paying the full shot in May 2016. Out of pocket is $110 per month. They refused to cover end of Nov 2016, which was prior to the changes on December 1st.

Once again - no way to win with these folks - disgusting.

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