In 1997, the Government introduced the Basic Prescription Drug Insurance Plan to ensure that the entire population of Québec had fair and reasonable access to the medication required by their state of health. Basic prescription drug insurance coverage is therefore available to all Québec residents, who must be insured through a group plan (group insurance or employee benefit plan) or through the public plan administered by the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ). As is the case for any other type of insurance, the basic plan relies on the financial participation of the insureds who purchase the plan and pay a premium in return for the protection offered.
Within the public plan, financial participation of insureds is based on an individual’s ability to pay. The public plan therefore offers assistance to low-income individuals. For information about the terms and conditions of coverage of the Public Prescription Drug Insurance Plan, visit the RAMQ Website at http://www.ramq.gouv.qc.ca/index_en.shtml , under Services for the Public, Prescription Drug Insurance Plan.
If you are covered by a group insurance plan, ask your insurer or employer about the terms and conditions of your contract. Individuals who have lost or quit their jobs and no longer have access to a group plan must register themselves and their children with the public plan by contacting the RAMQ.
The basic plan covers prescription drugs purchased in a Québec pharmacy that appear on the Liste de médicaments (drug list) published by the RAMQ. This list is updated regularly, about every four months. The Minister of Health and Social Services compiles the drug list following recommendations issued by the Conseil du médicament. You can also consult the Liste de médicaments on the Conseil du médicament Website at www.cdm.gouv.qc.ca. Group plans, however, may offer broader coverage.