I’d like to use my column, this week, to commend the hard work of a small group of Provencher residents who reached out to me regarding the critical need for access to Trikafta in Canada for those living with cystic fibrosis.
Cystic fibrosis (CF) is an inherited disorder that causes severe damage to the lungs, digestive system and other organs in the body.
Trikafta, a new triple-combination drug, is used to both treat the symptoms of cystic fibrosis and to target the genetic defect that causes the disease.
In March of 2020, I was able to meet with this group, learn about cystic fibrosis and the difference Trikafta could make. For Canadians living with CF, access to Trikafta could literally mean the difference between life and death.
My team and I, along with a group of other Conservative MP’s, went to work. In May 2020, fifty-nine Conservative MPs sent an open letter to federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu urging Health Canada to approve the drug for distribution in Canada. Parliamentarians also came together, across party lines, to press for action, such as through the All Party Emergency Access to Trikafta Caucus.
I had the opportunity to lobby the Liberal Government on behalf of these constituents and in June of this year we saw results. Health Canada approved the drug for sale in Canada.
Last week, the Government of Manitoba announced it was adding Trikafta to its drug formulary, qualifying the medication for coverage.
This is great news for those living with cystic fibrosis and their families.
I am thankful for the Government of Manitoba’s swift response to add this drug to their formulary so Manitobans suffering from cystic fibrosis can get the medicine they need.
For those waiting for access, I know this has been a long time in coming. Thank you for your tireless dedication to seeing this through. This achievement will make a world of difference in the lives of those with CF.
It is also a reminder that, despite our differences, government can still work together for Canadians, and that a small group of committed people can make a huge difference.