[Ip-health] KEI statement on GSK's announcement of policies to expand access to patented medicines.

Ruth Lopert ruth.lopert at gmail.com
Thu Mar 31 06:25:22 PDT 2016

This is great news.
Makes me wonder though why the cantons in Bosnia & Herzegovina with the
highest rates of respiratory disease from heavy industry pay the highest prices
for GSK's asthma/COPD drugs....

On Thu, Mar 31, 2016 at 11:30 PM, Zack Struver <zack.struver at keionline.org>

> http://keionline.org/node/2452
> KEI statement on GSK's announcement of policies to expand access to
> patented medicines.
> GSK has made a major announcement of new polices to expand access to its
> patented medicines. A copy of the press statement is here
> <
> http://www.gsk.com/en-gb/media/press-releases/2016/gsk-expands-graduated-approach-to-patents-and-intellectual-property-to-widen-access-to-medicines-in-the-world-s-poorest-countries/
> >.
> In a nutshell, GSK promises to file fewer patents or license patents in low
> income countries, lower prices in lower income countries, make its patent
> landscape more transparent, and to license patents to its oncology drugs to
> the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP), in a number of (but not all) low and
> middle income countries. Knowledge Ecology International issued the
> following statement today:
> The decision by GSK to license patents on cancer drugs to the Medicines
> Patent Pool (MPP) is welcome and impressive news. At present, the
> disparities in access to cancer drugs are incredibly harsh, and much more
> unequal than one sees for HIV and HCV drugs, the two areas where the MPP is
> now active.
> The details will be important. For both HIV and HCV drugs, the MPP has used
> open licenses that are transparent. Companies can sign on to MPP licenses
> and still maintain independence from the patent holder on other issues, and
> these features are important, and we assume that GSK’s decision to use the
> MPP is a decision to embrace these policies.
> All of the MPP licenses apply to a limited number of countries, and do not
> address all of the important access challenges. For this reason, it has
> been important that the MPP licenses have also allowed products
> manufactured under an MPP license to be exported to countries outside of
> the licensed territory, where there is no patent or where compulsory
> licenses have been issued. We also expect the GSK licenses for cancer drugs
> to permit exports outside of the territory, where the exports are otherwise
> lawful in the importing country.
> The GSK decisions on filing and licensing patents on other products in
> lower income countries, and the commitments on pricing and transparency,
> are all welcome initiatives.
> Other companies, such as Roche, Novartis, Bayer, Astellas, and BMS, with
> important oncology drugs should begin to engage on expanding access to
> their patented medicines, beyond just HIV and HCV drugs.
> Sir Andrew Witty has shown exceptional leadership, and we look forward to
> the implementation of this ambitious set of initiatives. In our view, even
> these welcome measures are not enough, and we continue to press for global
> delinkage of R&D costs from drug prices, and open licenses on all products.
> But people live and die in both the short and the long term, and the GSK
> announcement means more cancer patients will live longer and better lives
> in the near term, and that is good news."
> --
> Zack Struver, Communications and Research Associate
> Knowledge Ecology International
> zack.struver at keionline.org
> Twitter: @zstruver <https://twitter.com/zstruver>
> Office: +1 (202) 332-2670 Cell: +1 (914) 582-1428
> keionline.org
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