Overcoming Barriers to a Global Treaty on Medical Funding and R&D
Journal of the Brazilian Institute for Intellectual Property (7): 70-76
7 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2013 Last revised: 2 May 2015
Date Written: December 1, 2012
It has long been recognized that the developing world needs better and more accessible medicines. However, ensuring that medicines now widely available in the developed world are delivered at affordable prices, and incentivizing R&D for diseases that primarily affect the world’s poor, has proven a stubborn challenge. Most recently, a 2012 World Health Organization sponsored report has proposed negotiation on a global treaty that would commit Member States to spend at least 0.01% of their gross domestic product on R&D that addresses the special health needs of developing countries, and that would require at least 20% of this funding to be spent through a single pooled financing mechanism. This article analyzes the key components of the WHO proposal and their potential impact on public health. It proposes strategies to convert parties currently opposing the treaty, and argues that a limited market-exclusivity regime has the capacity for a meaningful impact.
Keywords: medical financing, drug development, neglected diseases, World Health Organization
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