US Health Journal Praises Brazil for Playing Hard Against AIDS Drugs Makers

    Efavirenz

    Efavirenz
    Brazil has set an example to other developing countries by employing "creative measures" to successfully tackle its HIV/AIDS epidemic, says a new study published by Health Affairs.

    The study commends the country's methods employed in significantly lowering AIDS-related death and illness, such as developing generic AIDS drugs in public factories and threatening to produce generic versions of patented medicines.

    In 2000, to combat rising treatment costs, Brazil's health minister José Serra pressured pharmaceutical companies to reduce their prices by threatening to issue a compulsory license that would enable local production of generic versions of patented antiretrovirals.

    The Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement allows a developing country to invoke a compulsory license if the nation's health is at risk, thus allowing the production of patented drugs without payment to the patent holder.

    Despite initial protests from the United States, the move proved successful and several companies slashed their prices. Brazil also started producing generic copies of non-patented medicines in 2001.

    Brazil issued its first compulsory license to import Efavirenz – the most commonly used HIV/AIDS drug in the country, made by Merck & Co – from India in 2007 and began producing the drug locally this year.

    "Brazil's challenges to multinational pharmaceutical companies promoted transparency about the high cost of patented medicines in an era when companies did not publicly share their drug prices," aid Amy Nunn, co-author of the study and assistant professor of medicine at Brown University in the United States.

    She said in a press release: "Before Brazil's efforts, as recently as the year 2000, most people living with HIV/AIDS in developing countries died without receiving treatment."

    Brazil's experience is valuable for middle-income countries, who are increasingly relying on generic medicines, say the authors.

    Graham Dutfield, professor of international governance at the University of Leeds, United Kingdom, says Brazil has set an excellent example for other countries.

    "Brazil's drug policy has been absolutely correct, giving priority to the human right to health over private commercial interests, something all countries are required to do under international human rights law," he affirmed.

    The authors' findings – based on interviews and analysis of Brazilian media – are published in the July/August edition of Health Affairs.

    This article appeared originally in Science and Development Network – www.scidev.net.

    Tags:

    • Show Comments (0)

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    comment *

    • name *

    • email *

    • website *

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    Ads

    You May Also Like

    Haitians in Brasileia, Acre

    Brazil Opens Doors to Haitians, But Only 100 a Month Will Be Able to Enter

    Brazil will have to rethink its immigration policy due to the economic impact generated ...

    A Judge Against The Body Shop

    A Brazilian judge has sentenced The Body Shop to pay more than $100,000 in ...

    The Four-Year Itch

    The only race where the number of candidates has fallen is for president. Instead ...

    Organic Gets Some Respect in Brazil

    Not only developed markets like the United States, Japan and Europe are consumers of ...

    FIFA’s Ranking: Brazil Is 1st and, Surprise, the US Is 5th

    The top 10 teams are closer than ever in the latest rankings issued by ...

    Blackout in Sã Paulo

    Massive Blackout Hits Brazil. Sí£o Paulo, Rio, 5 Other States in the Dark

     A massive blackout has hit Brazil this Tuesday night, November 10, around 10:15 pm, after hydroelectric ...

    Brazil's Folha de S. Paulo headline: Lula and Alckmin Dispute Second Round

    Brazilian Masses Send Lula a Message: We May Be Poor But We Are Not Dumb

    The first interpretations suggested by the tight electoral results of Sunday (October 1st) have ...

    Brazilian Congress Probe Gets Names of Who Got Money

    The financial director of the SMP&B firm, Simone Vasconcelos, left Brazil’s Federal Police headquarters ...

    French submarine Scorpene

    First Latin-American Nuclear Submarine to Be Built by Brazil and Argentina

    The Brazilian government says that Brazil will start working jointly with Argentina in the ...

    Rio Tinto in Corumbá, Brazil

    Brazilian Vale Buys Mines from Rio Tinto in Canada, Argentina, Brazil

    Rio Tinto Group, an Anglo-Australian company, is selling mining assets in Argentina, Brazil and ...