[Ip-health] Anti microbial resistance: India wants access, resources, tech transfer spelt out in global action plan

K.M. Gopakumar kumargopakm at gmail.com
Tue May 19 03:43:47 PDT 2015

Printed from
Anti microbial resistance: India wants access, resources, tech transfer
spelt out in global action planRema Nagarajan,TNN | May 19, 2015, 02.51 PM
 NEW DELHI: The World Health Organization's draft Global Action Plan to
tackle Anti-Microbial Resistance (AMR) is being criticized by the
developing countries for not taking their concerns on board such as access
to new antibiotics and the source of finance needed to put the plan into

India's heath minister being the president of the 68th World Health
Assembly that kicked off on Monday, there is pressure from various quarters
on India to support the Global Action Plan (GAP) in its current form.
Developed countries including UK and Sweden and the European Union are
among those trying to push the GAP through.

India's stance was clear in its statement on January 29 at the WHO
executive board meeting where it talked about the need accelerate R&D for
new antibiotics along with ensuring that the prices of new antibiotics are
delinked from R&D costs. The statement pointed out that no new class of
antibiotics being developed after 1987, was evidence for the failure of
current market models of R&D in antibiotics centered on profitability and
protection of IPRs.

The UK government review of AMR suggested that pharmaceutical companies
could be given up to $3 billion to discover and develop new antibiotics,
and those could be sold on a not-for-profit basis. The German chancellor
while addressing the WHA also said that as G7 chair AMR was one of her
priority areas. Governments of developing countries and public health
activists said the worry was that the pharma industry would be funded using
public funds on this pretext without any reciprocity in terms of access at
affordable prices.

India's January statement had also pointed out how counter-productive it
was to link the issues of access and excess of antibiotics which could lead
to overdose, incomplete course and incorrect prescription. India pointed
out that these could also happen due to "unethical medical and marketing
practices" and referred to the role of pharmaceutical companies which spent
enormous amounts of money on promoting antibiotics leading to overuse.
Developing countries have also raised the issue of financial and technical
assistance to ensure access to modern infection control and diagnostic
technologies in developing countries which have the highest burden of
infectious diseases.

Accordint to Yokeling Chee, director of Third World Network, a non-profit
network of international organizations working on various development
issues, the draft Global Action Plan on AMR was primarily focused on
monitoring and surveillance of AMR and did not put forward bold steps to
deal with AMR such as regulating the unethical marketing and promotion of
medicines by pharmaceutical companies. "The GAP also does not contain plans
for financial needs assessment and does not have concrete commitment to
provide developing countries with the necessary financial support. It is
also silent on investing in strengthening health systems although in the
absence of a robust health system effective response in AMR cannot be
sustained," he said.

More information about the Ip-health mailing list