Reformulary Group announces Cannabis Standard, Canada’s first evidence-based medical cannabis formulary

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About Us

Our Story
BEFORE 2005

Our founder, Helen, is a serial entrepreneur. In university, she had a promotional swag company, long before school sweatshirts were popular.

After doing her MSM and working in both Belgium and Switzerland for several years, she founded a consulting firm in Switzerland.

Eleven years later, she moved back to Toronto and founded another consulting firm in Toronto.

2005

Helen was asked by the government to dig into the prescription drug system in Ontario.

She recommended a series of transformative changes, all of which were implemented.

She was then recruited to be the first full-time Executive Officer of Ontario Public Drug Programs, as well as Assistant Deputy Minister of Health.

2005 / 2011

Her next five years were spent disrupting and transforming the prescription drug system in Ontario.

She and her team ended up saving the government and taxpayers $1.5 billion by changing the way drugs were approved -- effectively making the government and taxpayers the customer.

2011 / 2018

In 2011, she took disruption to the private sector with Reformulary®. Since then, The Reformulary – and our digital tool, DrugFinder – has made a major difference for Canadian employers.

Not only has it made corporate drug plans more cost-effective and sustainable for employers, but also more effective for employees.

Reformulary Group is a privately held company headquartered in Toronto, Canada.

Our Manifesto

We are committed to delivering drug benefit plans that are both sustainable for employers and efficacious for employees.

We will not compromise the quality of treatment offered to employees for any reason.

The quality of the drug options we offer is determined by science and evidence. Not accounting.

We help our clients succeed when we turn 
employees from consumers into partners.

We are committed to not just following best
practices, but to establishing them.

We are disrupting the traditional models for drug benefits. Our success depends on continuing to do so.

We tell the truth. If our solutions don’t solve a potential client’s problems, we’ll tell them that.

We’re proud of what we do. We’re making a difference to our clients and their employees.

We are a privately-held company. We are not responsible to shareholders. We are responsible only to our clients and our own standards.

Our Team
Helen Stevenson
Helen Stevenson
Founder, President and CEO
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In her former role as Assistant Deputy Minister of Health and Executive Officer of Ontario Public Drug Programs, Helen oversaw Ontario's $4 billion drug program. She led the most significant prescription drug reforms in two decades – Bill 102 – which saved Ontarians an unprecedented $1.5 billion over five years. Helen also led many of Ontario's drug system initiatives, including the Citizens' Council, Drugs for Rare Diseases Framework, MedsCheck, and the Ontario Narcotics Strategy. Helen is a former Trustee of the Auto Sector Retiree Health Care Trust and Chair of the Governance Committee, a former Governor of the Board of North York General Hospital, and former director of the Toronto East General Hospital Foundation.

She has a BCom (McGill University), MSM (Boston University Brussels), ICD.D designation.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Helen: She spent 4 days training with the Navy Seals in Coronado, California.

Amanda Belcham
Amanda Belcham
Executive Assistant
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Amanda has an Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Ontario Institute of Technology. Through these years of university, she has acquired a critical and analytical thought process that has been essential for the development of problem solving strategies.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Amanda: At 4 years old, Amanda helped introduce Teddy Graham cookies to the Nabisco staff.

Allan Levine
Allan Levine
VP Business Operations
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Prior to joining Reformulary Group, Allan was the founder and president of a data-driven marketing company. He has been VP of Business Development & Operations for an automotive company and VP Of Operations for a consumer-packaged goods company.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Allan: He once worked as Gordie Howe’s bodyguard.

Angelo Tullo
Angelo Tullo
VP, Finance
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Angelo is a Chartered Professional Accountant with over 20 years of international financial and operational experience with both private and public companies. He has served at TSX and TSX Venture listed companies as Chief Financial Officer, Vice President, Director, Company Secretary, as well as serving on the Board of Directors.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Angelo: He shares the same birthday with his eldest son.

Silvia Hruba
Silvia Hruba
Formulary Coordinator
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Silvia was Office Manager at Pharm-In in Slovakia where she provided medical translation expertise in addition to more general executive level administrative support. Her experience also includes various administrative positions within the Public Service Alliance of Canada.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Silvia: She is fluent in English and Slovak, and can hold conversations in French, Russian and Dutch.

Nasir Keshvani
Nasir Keshvani
Director, Informatics
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Prior to joining Reformulary Group Inc., Nasir worked as Senior Actuarial Analyst with Mercer, one of the largest benefits consulting firms in the world. He was responsible for performing actuarial funding and accounting valuations of large to medium sized pension plans in both the public and private sectors. His clients included top Fortune 500 companies in the Banking and Finance, Manufacturing, Mining and Healthcare sectors.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Nasir: He was the top performer in the Euclid Mathematics Competition in Kenya in 2003.

Geyijie Li
Geyijie Li
Business Analyst
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Geyijie received his MSc. in Statistics from Carleton University, and has earned his Associate of the Society of the Actuaries (ASA) designation. Previously, Geyijie worked as a Business Data Analyst in Inspur Group China.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Geyijie: He’s learning how to play the violin.

Wendy Zhang
Wendy Zhang
Business Analyst
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Wendy has a Bachelor of Science in Financial Mathematics and Financial Engineering, as well as a Master of Science in Mathematics, which she completed in 2015. She previously worked as a Data Administrator at Brookfield Residential.

One thing you probably don’t know about Wendy: She enjoys singing and was a member of the choir in primary school.

Nate Weisbrod
Nate Weisbrod
Sales Support Associate
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Nate received his Bachelor of Commerce from Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University, where he specialized in Marketing Management. He also did further studies in Entrepreneurship and Strategy.

One thing you probably didn’t know about Nate: He’s a certified scuba diver.

Our Experts

Formed in 2011, our Reformulary Expert Committee includes 13 practicing physicians and pharmacists, all experts in their field. They provide independent advice to us. They are not employees of our company. The Committee meets every month to review new prescription drugs available in Canada, as well as conduct drug class reviews. To date, our Committee has met 78 times.

But what about potential conflicts? Reformulary Group has clear and transparent guidelines on conflicts and interest for members of its Expert Committee. Each member has completed and submitted a Conflict of Interest Disclosure Form, and has an ongoing obligation to disclose any potential, perceived or real conflicts of interest.

Chairman, Vice-Chair
Committee members
Special Advisors
Chair
Dr Paul Oh, MD, MSc, FRCPC
Toronto, Ontario

Dr Paul Oh is the Medical Director of the Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation Program and a Scientist at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, at University Health Network (UHN). He is a prior Chair of the Drug Quality and Therapeutics Committee (DQTC) of Ontario, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (MOHLTC), and has participated in guidelines and strategic development processes for medication and health technology evaluation provincially and federally.

Vice Chair
Muhammad Mamdani, MPH, MA, PharmD
Toronto, Ontario

Dr Muhammad Mamdani is the Director of the Li Ka Shing Centre for Healthcare Analytics Research and Training (CHART) of the Li Ka Shing Institute of St. Michael's Hospital and an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto. He is also Professor in the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, the Department of Medicine of the Faculty of Medicine, and the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation of the Dalla Lana Faculty of Public Health. Muhammad is also adjunct Senior Scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES), and a co-Principal Investigator of the Ontario Drug Policy Research Network.

Committee member
Dr Bill Evans, MD, FRCPC
Hamilton, Ontario

Dr Bill Evans is a medical oncologist with a career long interest in lung cancer. He is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Oncology, McMaster University and runs a consulting practice called Oncosynthesis Consulting Inc. He also chairs Cancer Care Ontario’s Smoking Cessation Advisory Committee and is a member of the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer’s Steering Committee for a Cancer Risk Management Model. He has served in several senior positions including CEO of the Ottawa Regional Cancer Centre, provincial head of systemic therapy at the provincial office of Cancer Care Ontario and President of the Juravinski Hospital and Cancer Centre at Hamilton Health Sciences. Dr Evans has published over 275 publications in peer-reviewed journals.

Committee member
Dr Gerald A. Evans, MD, FRCPC
Kingston, Ontario

Dr Gerald Evans is the Chair of the Division of Infectious Diseases and a Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Biomedical & Molecular Sciences, and Pathology & Molecular Medicine at Queen's University, as well as an attending physician in Infectious Diseases and Internal Medicine at Kingston General Hospital and Hotel Dieu Hospital. He is an Adjunct ICES Scientist and a co-investigator with the Ontario Drug Policy Research Network (ODPRN), serves as a member of the CED-Cancer Care Ontario Subcommittee, and is Chair of the Working Group on Drugs for Rare Diseases for the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC). He is past chair of the MOHLTC Committee to Evaluate Drugs (CED).

Committee member
Jean Lachaine, BPharm, PhD
Montreal, Quebec

Dr Jean Lachaine is a professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Montreal and is associate researcher at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Montreal. He is a member of the Scientific Committee of the Quebec Institut National d'Excellence en Santé et en Services Sociaux (INESSS) as the expert in pharmacoeconomics. He is also an active member of the Quebec Network for Personalized Health Care and of the Personalized Medicine Partnership for Cancer (PMPC).

Committee member
Dr Stuart MacLeod, MD, PhD
Vancouver, British Columbia

Dr Stuart MacLeod has been Professor of Pediatrics at the University of British Columbia since 2003 and moved to emeritus status in January 2015. He is an investigator at BC Children’s Hospital, and was previously Director of the Child and Family Research Institute at BC Children’s Hospital and served as Vice President Research for the Provincial Health Services Authority of British Columbia. His current research interests include pediatric clinical pharmacology and toxicology, adverse drug reactions, pharmacogenomics, drug policy and optimal drug use for children.

Committee member
Dr Elizabeth Mann, MD
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Dr Elizabeth Mann is a General Internist with special interest in cardiovascular diseases and porphyria. She was a Professor of Medicine at Dalhousie University. Elizabeth also served on the Council of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia from June 2007 until May 2017, and served as President of the College from 2012 to 2014. She has received teaching and clinical awards from her department, the Canadian Society of Internal Medicine and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. She has had a number of administrative roles and is currently Past President of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia.

Committee member
Dr Peter Tugwell, MSc, MD, FRCPC, FACP, FRCP
Ottawa, Ontario

Dr Peter Tugwell is a Professor of Medicine, and Epidemiology & Community Medicine at the University of Ottawa and a practicing rheumatologist at the Ottawa Hospital. He is also the Director for the Centre for Global Health at the Institute of Population Health at the University of Ottawa. Peter is a co-director of a WHO Collaborating Centre for Knowledge Translation & Health Technology Assessment in Equity, and Coordinating Editor of the Cochrane Musculoskeletal Review Group. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada.

Committee member
Sandra Knowles, BScPhm
Toronto, Ontario

Sandra Knowles is a Drug Safety Pharmacist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto and Assistant Professor (Status Only) at the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto. She has published extensively on adverse drug reactions in peer-reviewed journals and has contributed to various book chapters, with over 100 publications to date.

Special Advisor
Dr Joe Clarke, MD, PhD, MSc
Toronto, Ontario

Joe Clarke is Professor Emeritus of pediatrics at the University of Toronto. He obtained an MD, a PhD in biochemistry and an MSc in health policy. He has contributed to the basic understanding of a number of inherited metabolic diseases, including lysosomal storage diseases. For over 45 years, Joe maintained an active clinical practice attending patients of all ages affected with various inherited metabolic diseases. Dr. Clarke also wrote the textbook, A Clinical Guide to Inherited Metabolic Diseases, Cambridge University Press.

Special Advisor
Dr Andreas Laupacis, MD, MSc
Toronto, Ontario

Andreas is a general internist and the Executive Director of the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital, Professors in the Faculty of Medicine and Department of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto, and a Scientist at the Keenan Research Centre. He has extensive experience with drug reimbursement decisions in the public sector, having been a member of Ontario’s Drug Therapeutics and Quality Committee (DQTC) and the first Chair of the Canadian Expert Drug Advisory Committee of the Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH).

Special Advisor
Dr Braden Manns, MD, MSc, FRCPC
Calgary, Alberta

Braden Manns is the Svare Professor in Heath Economics and a nephrologist at the University of Calgary in the Departments of Medicine and Community Health Sciences and an Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions Health Scholar. He is also the Scientific Director of the Alberta Health Services Kidney – Strategic Clinical Network. Braden is the past Chair of the Canadian Expert Drug Advisory Committee, a past member of the Expert Drug Evaluation and Therapeutics Committee for Alberta Health, and immediate Past President of the Canadian Society of Nephrology.

Special Advisor
Michael Boivin, BScPhm
Barrie, Ontario

Michael Boivin is a clinical pharmacist consultant, continuing education developer and president of CommPharm Consulting Inc. He has written almost 100 continuing education activities for pharmacists, family physicians, physician specialists, nurses and other allied health professionals, and has worked extensively for 17 years in the community pharmacy setting.

Consultant
Dr Michael Mayne, PhD
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

Michael is the founder and CEO of Health Consulting Canada Inc., which focuses on improving product value proposition to potential buyers in Canada and worldwide. He has over 15 years of experience as a senior executive in federal and provincial governments, previously serving as Deputy Minister of Health and playing key roles in overhauling Canadian procurement rules and policies for generic and brand medication. Most recently, Michael was CEO for the regional Health Authority where he was responsible for managing front line services for health care within the Canadian single payer system.

About Us

For decades, few knew what a formulary was, let alone understood its importance.

And because no one took care of it, a formulary ceased to be nothing more than a long list that went unmanaged, was undifferentiated, and was not transparent to users.

When a formulary is not managed intelligently and Canadian employers are spending $11 billion annually, there are bound to be consequences.

Increasing drug spend and rising premiums will ultimately lead to desperate and blunt measures to control costs. These measures tend to alienate employees without appreciably reducing costs.

That is precisely why our founder started Reformulary Group, and consequently, why we continue to achieve a high level of success.

Our Reformulary® - which is built on trusted, expert, independent advice – has proven to save employers money and make their plans more sustainable.

Through our Reformulary's DrugFinder® platform, we put the formulary in the hands of plan members and Canadians to empower them to make smart drug choices.

Our new Cannabis Standard™ formulary is being built based on a thorough review of the evidence and on the trusted independent advice of our Cannabis Formulary Committee.

Cannabis Standard will be available in December 2018.

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