Is It Safe and Cost-Effective to Import Drugs from Canada?

States are considering importing prescription drugs from Canada, but is it safe? Will it save money? Can it be done? Three, easy-to-read infographics explain what state leaders need to know if they’re interested in drug importation legislation.

1. Is it safe to import drugs from Canada? Yes, 40 percent of all drugs sold in the United States are already imported and 80 percent of active ingredients used in US drugs come from abroad.

2. Will states save by importing drugs from Canada? States and their consumers can reap large savings by paying Canadian prices. For example, Lyrica costs $6.04 in the United States and 63 cents in Canada, Xarelto cost $12.44 here compared to Canada’s $2.11 price, and Eliquis costs $6.21 compared to $1.60 north of the border.

3. How does a state implement a drug importation program? The federal government can authorize importation if it is safe and saves consumers money. NASHP has crafted model importation legislation and clarified the steps state policymakers can take to initiate drug importation.