Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate and thank my hon. colleague for the work she has done in Parliament to advance health policy in this country in a variety of areas.
Canadians know intuitively that a universal public health care system is the best way to deliver health care of all types. That is why we are proud of our Canadian health care system. We know that the U.S. system, which is a patchwork of private-public coverage in which some 20% of Americans are not covered, is simply an inferior system to the one we have, yet that is exactly the kind of system we have when it comes to pharmacare in this country. Twenty per cent of Canadians are not covered, and there is a patchwork of public and private plans.
We know that if we folded pharmacare into the universal program, we would get all the savings of streamlined administration, bulk buying, and exclusive licensing agreements. We would get savings from less cost-related non-adherence, meaning that people who take their medicines stay healthier and actually cost us less than if they go off of their medicines and cost the system more. These are the reasons Canadians know that a public health care system is the cheapest, best, and fairest way to deliver health care.
I am wondering if my hon. colleague can explain why the Liberals and Conservatives do not agree with that when it comes to pharmacare?