Canada Life now offers Shoppers Drug Mart health coaching program targeting chronic disease prevention and management


“At Canada Life, we’re always on the lookout for programs and initiatives that support the financial, physical and mental well-being of Canadians,” says Ryan Weiss, Vice-President, Product & Experience for Group Customer. “The health coaching program evolved from a successful diabetes management coaching and medication counselling program that we launched together with Shoppers Drug Mart in 2013. By expanding that early program, we aim to build on that earlier success by tackling some known care gaps and empowering plan members to better manage their health.”

The health coaching program is delivered remotely by pharmacists, nurses, and dietitians, to make the program accessible from anywhere. This ease of access is especially important so employers can continue to support their employees during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This program is led by the Health Solutions by ShoppersTM team, a group committed to helping employers and their benefits providers deliver more cost-effective and sustainable employee health benefits, with a focus on improving employee well-being and ultimately health outcomes. Tools available include Health Coaching, HealthwatchR Drug Plan, and a Medical Cannabis Program.

“Our purpose is to help Canadians live life well and that means providing the tools they need to successfully manage their overall health,” says Barbara Carnegie, Vice-President of Payor Partnerships at Shoppers Drug Mart. “Now more than ever, Canadians need convenient access to resources that help them navigate their health challenges. Through participating employers, our pharmacists, nurses, and dietitians from our health coaching team can provide the support required to help employees and their dependents both prevent and manage their conditions more effectively.”

According to The Sanofi Healthcare Report1, the incidence of chronic disease rose from 37 per cent to 58 per cent between 2007 and 2020. For employers with group benefits plans, this increase likely contributed to higher costs for prescription drugs and coverage for short-term disability (STD) leaves of absence, as well as lower employee productivity.

For example, recent industry surveys found:

Chronic conditions accounted for 68 per cent of overall drug spending.2
The average duration of STD absences was 49 days per claim.3
Thirty-eight per cent of employees struggling with chronic conditions reported missing work or found it harder to do their job.4

By offering this health coaching program, Canada Life is continuing to support plan sponsors and plan members with programs and initiatives focused on improving the overall well-being of all Canadians.

1 The Sanofi Healthcare Survey, 2007, 2018, and 2020

2 2016-2019 Cost Drivers Analysis of Private Drug Plans in Canada, a report by Innovative Medicines Canada

3 Examining the comparative incidence and costs of physical and mental health-related disabilities in an employed population. J Occup Environ Med.

4 Sanofi HealthCare survey 2020

About Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. 
Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. is one of the most recognized and trusted names in Canadian retailing. The company is the licensor of full-service retail drug stores operating under the name Shoppers Drug Mart (Pharmaprix in Québec). With almost 1,300 Shoppers Drug Mart® and Pharmaprix® stores operating in prime locations in each province and two territories, the company is one of the most convenient retailers in Canada. The company also licenses or owns 47 medical clinic pharmacies operating under the name Shoppers Simply Pharmacy® (Pharmaprix Simplement Santé® in Québec). In addition to its retail store network, the company owns the Medical Cannabis by Shoppers™ online platform for the sale of medical cannabis, Shoppers Drug Mart Specialty Health Network Inc., a provider of specialty drug distribution, pharmacy and comprehensive patient support services, and Health Solutions by Shoppers™, a provider of cost-effective and sustainable employee health benefits. For more information, please visit www.morewaystobenefit.ca. Shoppers Drug Mart is an independent operating division of Loblaw Companies Limited.

About The Canada Life Assurance Company
Canada Life is a leading insurance, wealth management and benefits provider focused on improving the financial, physical and mental well-being of Canadians. For more than 170 years, individuals, families and business owners across Canada have trusted us to provide sound guidance and deliver on the promises we’ve made.

On January 1, 2020, Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life became one company – Canada Life, and today, we proudly serve more than 12 million customer relationships from coast to coast to coast.

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SOURCE Canada Life

For further information: Liz Kulyk, AVP, Media & Public Affairs, The Canada Life Assurance Company, 204-391-8515, [email protected]; Shoppers Drug Mart: [email protected]



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