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Manitoba Improves Administration For Flu Antiviral

Ruzanna Harutyunyan's picture

Manitoba Health and Healthy Living advises a regulation change will streamline the approval process for pharmacare coverage when health-care providers prescribe flu antivirals, but will not change how these drugs are prescribed to Manitobans who need them. This is a change in administrative process only.

This regulation will streamline the approval process for benefit coverage for Tamiflu, so it can be approved more quickly for pharmacare.

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Tamiflu was already covered for Manitobans enrolled in the Manitoba Pharmacare Program who had reached their deductible when they met the medical criteria and had obtained prior approval. The medical criteria for pharmacare coverage has not changed.

Anyone with a serious flu-like illness who requires hospitalization will be given antivirals free of charge, just like any other medication administered to in-patients. There is also no change for any First Nations person living on reserve, as they have coverage under First Nations and Inuit Health.

Manitobans who need antivirals like Tamiflu will continue to have rapid access to them. Antivirals are used to treat people showing symptoms of a flu-like illness who are at greater risk of becoming severely ill. The province’s clinical guidelines to health-care providers outline who may be at greater risk for severe illness and the need to provide antivirals as early treatment.