Fighting Antibiotic Resistance: Marrying New Financial Incentives to Meeting Public Health Goals

Health Affairs, Vol. 29, No. 9, September 2010

Boston Univ. School of Law Working Paper No. 10-40

8 Pages Posted: 16 Nov 2010 Last revised: 8 Aug 2015

Kevin Outterson

Boston University School of Law

Aaron S. Kesselheim

Brigham and Women's Hospital/Harvard Medical School; Harvard University - Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics

Date Written: November 15, 2010

Abstract

The world faces a worsening public health crisis: A growing number of bacteria are resistant to available antibiotics. Yet there are few new antibiotics in the development pipeline to take the place of these increasingly ineffective drugs. We review a number of proposals intended to bolster drug development, including such financial incentives for pharmaceutical manufacturers as extending the effective patent life for new antibiotics. However, such strategies directly conflict with the clear need to reduce unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions and could actually increase prescription use. As an alternative, we recommend a two-prong, "integrated" strategy. This would increase reimbursement for the appropriate, evidence-based use of antibiotics that also met specific public health goals - such as reducing illness levels while limiting antibiotic resistance.

Keywords: antibiotic resistance, antibiotics, drug development, patenting of antibiotics

JEL Classification: K11, K19, K323, K32, K33, K39

Suggested Citation

Outterson, Kevin and Kesselheim, Aaron S., Fighting Antibiotic Resistance: Marrying New Financial Incentives to Meeting Public Health Goals (November 15, 2010). Health Affairs, Vol. 29, No. 9, September 2010 ; Boston Univ. School of Law Working Paper No. 10-40. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1709389

Kevin Outterson (Contact Author)

Boston University School of Law ( email )

765 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
United States

Aaron S. Kesselheim

Brigham and Women's Hospital/Harvard Medical School ( email )

1620 Tremont St
Suite 3030
Boston, MA 02120
United States
617-278-0930 (Phone)
617-232-8602 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.drugepi.org/portal

Harvard University - Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics ( email )

124 Mount Auburn Street
Suite 520N
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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