Project Background

A group of care providers at Vancouver General Hospital, Kimi Manhas, RN, Dr. Ken Gin and Dr. Lynn Straatman, have been partnering with Dr. Michael Law and his team from the UBC School of Population and Public Health to explore organizational approaches to addressing medication affordability. The team has had organizational support from Vivian Eliopoulos, Interim CEO at Vancouver Coastal Health.

This work was led by Kimi Manhas who completed a research thesis titled Addressing Cost-Related Nonadherence: Our Experiences Supporting Patients in a Tertiary Healthcare Organization. The research was conducted in the form of workshops, where stakeholders were invited to discuss possible actionable solutions to medication affordability. Stakeholders included nurses, social workers, pharmacists, physicians, directors, managers, professional practice, and patients. The participants focused on Fair PharmaCare enrollment as one of the solutions, with an emphasis on automation, access, and education.

The team has since received a $20,000 grant from the Vancouver Physicians Staff Association (VPSA) to develop actionable strategies to support care providers and patients. They have developed materials to support both patient groups and health-care providers in the form of brochures, posters, videos, and a website to host these resources. The team is hoping to have a partnership with the Ministry, and develop a shared approach to supporting patients who struggle to pay for their medications.