If I can add to that, I think it's a great question but a difficult one to find a solution for, because you have to look at some sort of partnership between the federal government and provincial governments to do so. Provincial governments make some effort to protect themselves, if you like, from the impact of shortages, with some generic drugs that have exception status on the formularies. When they’re single-sourced, they may be allowed to be sold at higher prices. The provincial governments have a role.
I think the federal government also has an important role. Health Canada has been developing some of that. We've seen it as a result of the Sandoz shortage.
Historically we've had this issue of the supply chain falling through the cracks. It's not something that is strictly the federal government's responsibility or the provincial government's responsibility. People have been happy to allow the manufacturers or pharmacies to manage the supply chain.
We certainly need a lot of discussion to work out the structure of some oversight agency. I think gathering data and gathering information is the first step.
One thing we have to think about is that we spend a lot of time regulating and approving new drugs that come onto the market. Then the organization that Mr. O'Rourke is responsible for, the common drug review, decides what's going to get listed. As a result, we spend a lot of time looking at what comes onto the market.
One thing we've got to look at is what goes off the market. One problem we've seen with a lot of drugs that have gone into shortage—and Sandoz is a specific issue of manufacturing, and that is another issue—is that they're old drugs. They've been generic for some time. They're low-value often low-volume drugs, but they're still clinically important. I think we have to look at how to address some of these older drugs that have been around for some time and how to keep them on the market.