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Gowlings’ Drug Pricing & Reimbursement (DPR) Group provides commercial, technical and litigation services related to pricing, reimbursement and market-access issues. Gowlings has appeared as counsel for patentees in more hearings before the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board (PMPRB) than any other law firm in Canada. We assist clients in understanding the business and associated legal issues in this area from both federal and provincial perspectives.

Since the introduction of patented medicine price controls in 1987, Gowlings has represented clients before the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board (PMPRB) and in the courts on cases involving allegations of excessive pricing, reporting requirements and jurisdictional issues relating to the federal price control scheme. 

Gowlings’  litigation experience in this area includes:

  • Representing Canada's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies (Rx&D) and 17 co-applicant Rx&D-member companies in the 2009 case before the Federal Court that confirmed payments by patentees to provinces under risk-sharing agreements are not reportable to the PMPRB
  • Representing Hoechst Marion Roussel Canada Inc. in various PMPRB proceedings involving the NICODERM product case, which included a decision on the PMPRB’s jurisdictional limits and procedural fairness requirements, along with a Board Panel ruling at the first hearing that no excess revenues were owed by the patentee
  • Representing Shire Canada Inc. and Janssen-Ortho, Inc. in separate proceedings before a PMPRB panel involving the ADDERALL XR and CONCERTA products respectively; the ADDERALL XR case was notable in that it spurred the development of the “moderate improvement” category of drugs, a new category for PMPRB pricing purposes


Look to Gowlings for strategic advice and representation, including: 

  • Advocacy and drafting of pre-market submissions to the PMPRB
  • Counsel before the PMPRB and the Federal Court on federal pricing issues
  • Advice on patent reporting requirements and whether a patent grants PMPRB jurisdiction
  • Life-cycle management advice, including non-patent exclusivity strategies such as data protection
  • Negotiations on supply agreements with hospitals and other links in the distribution chain
  • Product-listing agreements with provincial reimbursement bodies
  • Confidentiality issues related to supply agreements
  • Advice on access-to-information legislation in the context of pricing agreements and the protection of confidential information

Our DPR group assists companies in developing the right strategies throughout the product life cycle starting with patent claim review prior to deciding to allow a patent to issue, through to issues that arise before patent expiry. We have experienced counsel to represent your interests.

Our lawyers are members of the firm’s Life Sciences Industry Group, which provides a full range of business, advocacy and other intellectual property services from offices across Canada and in Russia. We work with our clients to obtain enforceable patent claims, secure and maintain trade-mark protection, navigate complex regulatory regimes, assist with pricing and competition issues and resist product-liability claims. For more information, visit our Life Sciences Industry Group and IP litigation pages.


Our team members are frequent speakers and writers on matters of pricing and market access. Click here to subscribe to Gowlings’ Drug Pricing & Reimbursement newsletter. The Gowlings-authored text, Life Sciences Law in Canada, published by Carswell and updated annually, provides a valuable resource for life sciences companies and includes a chapter on the PMPRB, as well as the PMPRB’s Compendium of Guidelines, Policies and Procedures.

Go to the Life Sciences page


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