Public outcry prompts Alberta to back-off on cuts to senior drug coverage

A public outcry has prompted the Alberta government to back-off on some cuts to drug coverage for seniors.

EDMONTON — A public outcry has prompted the Alberta government to back-off on some cuts to drug coverage for seniors.

Health Minister Ron Liepert says he has heard plenty of complaints from seniors since the cuts were announced four months ago that were to save the government $24-million per year.

Liepert has now introduced a complex new program of premiums and fees that will save the province about $18-million — $6-million less than first planned.

When the cuts were first announced some seniors were especially upset about facing a deductible of up to $7,500 per year.

Liepert says under the new changes almost 60 per cent of seniors will either receive free prescription drugs or pay less than they do now.

Under the old drug plan, seniors only paid a $25 fee for each prescription.