How are drugs approved?


Non-cancer drugs

After Health Canada has approved a drug to be sold in Canada, but before these drugs will be funded under most public drug plans, a manufacturer must apply to the Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health to have its drug reviewed through the Common Drug Review (CDR). This review can take between six and eight months. Steps include:

  1. The CDR will review the clinical evidence for its use and the overall cost. The CDR receives expert advice from the Canadian Expert Drug Advisory Committee to complete its review.
  2. The CDR recommends which new non-cancer drugs may be covered under publicly funded drug benefit plans in Canada. All federal, provincial and territory governments take part in this review except Québec.

Learn more about the CDR process from their website.

The final step for approval

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