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Legislation

Why is Health Canada thwarting Parliament’s will?

By Green Party Leader Elizabeth May      

In the fight to implement Vanessa’s Law, it comes down to Big Pharma vs. the health of Canadians.

Former MP Terence Young’s daughter Vanessa died in 2000 at the age of 15 after suffering complications while taking the prescribed drug Prepulsid for minor indigestion issues. The drug has since been taken off the market. The Hill Times photograph by Cynthia Münster

The problem of regulators becoming captives of the regulated is not new. It’s the idea that a regulator is basically an instrument of the industry it’s meant to regulate. Former Alberta Liberal leader Kevin Taft wrote about it in his book Oil’s Deep State. I see it all around us—in the National Energy Board approach to pipelines, for instance (though it says its decisions are based on evidence and not any predetermination), and in Nav Canada describing airlines as its clients.

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