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Have You Registered For B.C. PharmaCare?

Thursday, September 14, 2017

By: John Hale, BAcc CPA, CGA CFP

We are fortunate to have a publicly-funded health care system that ensures that all eligible B.C. residents have access to medically-necessary health care services through the province’s Medical Services Plan (MSP).  However, you might not be aware that the province also covers eligible prescription medications, medical supplies, and pharmacy services through the PharmaCare program.

BC PharmaCare helps with the cost of eligible prescription drugs, and certain medical supplies and pharmacy services. The plan provides assistance through several drug plans; the largest being the income-based Fair PharmaCare Plan.

Fair PharmaCare Plan

To be eligible for the Fair PharmaCare Plan, you must have valid MSP coverage and have filed an income tax return for the relevant tax year.

First, you must register.  Registration is available online, by telephone or by a manual application.  There is no cost to register and there are no additional premiums.  Anyone who is currently paying MSP premiums is encourage to register.

Assistance is based on your family net income from two years ago.  The lower your income, the more help you will receive.


Your family net income from two years ago will be used to establish your “family deductible” and your “family maximum.”  Under the Fair PharmaCare Plan, you pay your family’s prescription costs until you meet your deductible.  After you meet your deductible, PharmaCare helps pay eligible costs for the rest of the year. Once you surpass your family maximum, PharmaCare pays 100% of eligible expenses.

For example, a family with a net income of $75,000 would have an annual deductible of $2,250 and a family maximum of $3,000.  Therefore, once eligible costs exceed $2,250, PharmaCare would pay 70%. Once total eligible costs exceed $3,000, PharmaCare would pay 100% of costs going forward.

Once you have PharmaCare coverage, any portion of your prescription cost covered by PharmaCare is calculated at the time of purchase. At the pharmacy, you only pay the costs PharmaCare does not cover.

Link to online registration

Link to manual registration form

 

 


                                                                                                                       






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