Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague for his question. I can say a few words about what I often see and what patients tell me.
Some of the patients I see in the emergency room or in intensive care tell me they cannot afford certain drugs, because even with insurance, they still need to cover 20% of the cost. I have heard patients admit to cutting their pills in half or taking their medication only every other day.
When a patient is prescribed a drug, they need to follow the dosage instructions. If patients do not take their medication as directed, not because they do not want to, but because they cannot afford to, they are not going to get better. Speaking as a health professional, we find it extremely difficult to deliver proper care to patients who are unable to follow their recommended course of treatment, not out of ignorance or a lack of understanding, but simply due to financial constraints.