"Cancer does not discriminate. Why should the treatment?"
- Ontario resident

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Take action to fund take-home cancer drugs

It is estimated that 2 out of 5 Canadians are expected to develop cancer in their lifetime.

Cancer patients should not face delays or financial barriers in accessing their treatments. Unfortunately, in Ontario, many patients and their families face these obstacles when it comes to take-home cancer medications.

Tell your MPP that Ontario needs a program to cover the cost of all eligible take-home cancer drugs!

Take Action Now

  • Accessing take-home cancer drugs

    In the past, most cancer medications were administered by intravenous (IV) in the hospital and covered by the government. Today, many cancer medications are now taken at home. In fact, it is estimated that more than 50% of new cancer drugs are formulated for in-home administration. There are several advantages to this, including less travel for patients and ease of administration; however, patients often encounter obstacles in accessing these medications.

    In Ontario, take-home cancer drugs are not publicly-funded through the same programs as medications delivered in hospital. Coverage comes from a mix of private insurance (which often has co-payments or limits), out-of-pocket costs, or provincial programs for certain groups.

    As many as 6 programs may be required by a single cancer patient to cover the cost of their treatment. This process of obtaining authorization and reinbursement of approved cancer medications can be time-consuming, exhausting and overwhelming. Unfortunately, it can also delay or prevent patients from accessing cancer medications. Also concerning is that 1 in 6 Ontario cancer patients report that their out-of-pocket expenses are significant or unmanageable.

    The Canadian Cancer Society believes that all Canadians should have access to cancer drug treatments without financial hardship regardless of where they live. Coping with a cancer diagnosis and undergoing treatment is difficult enough; patients and their families should not have to deal with the additional stress of having to determine how they will fund their drugs.

    Learn more and tell your MPP that we need action to fund take-home cancer drugs!

    Take Action Now

  • Roundtable on take-home cancer drugs

    In 2014, Cancer Care Ontario (CCO) hosted a board consultation session on take-home cancer drugs in Ontario with key partners and stakeholders. Following this session, CCO released a report, Think Tank: Enhancing the Delivery of Take-Home Cancer Therapies in Ontario. This report summarized the consultation and outlined recommendations for action to enhance the system of take-home cancer drugs.

    As a follow-up to the CCO Think Tank report, The Canadian Cancer Society and the CanCertainty Coalition co-hosted a Roundtable on Take-Home Cancer Drugs in June 2016. The facilitated meeting brought together representatives from key stakeholder groups across the public and private sector to share updates and to work collaboratively in a small group setting to identify potential solution to enhance the delivery and access to take-home cancer drugs in Ontario.

    Read the full Discussion Summary from our Roundtable.

  • Canadian landscape of cancer drugs

    Similar to Ontario, the Atlantic provinces have different systems for intravenous and take-home cancer medications. Funding of take-home cancer medications is covered through a mix of private insurance, special programs or out-of-pocket expenses. In Quebec, the public plan provides coverage for eligible take-home cancer medications (individuals may be required to pay a deductible based on income).

    It is a different situation in the Western provinces. In Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia, patients can get their cancer medications covered through government funded programs regardless of whether they are taken in a hospital or at home. The funding system is the same for intravenous and take-home cancer medications.

    Learn more and tell your MPP that we need action to fund take-home cancer drugs!

    Take Action Now 

  • Public opinion polling 

    Ontarians should have equitable access to cancer treatment and care whether delivered in the hospital or at home.

    In a recent poll conducted by the Society, 91% of the Ontarians polled aggreed that the government should fund take-home cancer drugs. It's time for Ontario to catch up.

    Learn more and tell your MPP that we need action to fund take-home cancer drugs!

    Take Action Now 

  • Take Action

    The Society is recommending the Government of Ontario develop a provincial program that provides coverage for all eligible cancer drugs taken at home.

    Sign to challenge your MPP to support this issue!

    Take Action Now 



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Cancer affects all Canadians

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Nearly 1 in 2 Canadians is expected to be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime.

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