Delinking Investment in Antibiotic Research and Development from Sales Revenues: The Challenges of Transforming a Promising Idea into Reality

7 Pages Posted: 15 Jun 2016 Last revised: 12 Jul 2016

See all articles by Kevin Outterson

Kevin Outterson

Boston University School of Law

Unni Gopinathan

Norwegian Institute of Public Health

Charles Clift

Centre on Global Health Security - Chatham House

Anthony So

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Chantal Morel

McGill University

John-Arne Røttingen

Norwegian Knowledge Center for the Health Services

Date Written: June 14, 2016

Abstract

1. The current business model for antibiotics is plagued by market failures and perverse incentives that both work against conservation efforts and provide insufficient rewards to drive the development of much-needed new treatments for resistant infection.

2. Many new incentive mechanisms have been proposed to realign incentives and support innovation and conservation over the long term. The most promising of these are based on the idea of delinking rewards from sales volume of the antibiotic — the notion of “delinkage.”

3. Some critical design issues for delinkage remain, such as how to secure access to badly needed new products when resistance renders existing treatments ineffective, an increasingly urgent global problem. The issue of global access to antibiotics is not sufficiently addressed de facto by a delinked mechanism, and, as such, it must be addressed explicitly through specific design features of new mechanisms, including defining the eligibility criteria for delinkage rewards and appropriate management of intellectual property.

4. The idea of establishing a new business model to drive antibiotic development and improve conservation currently has the world’s attention. We must now work quickly to examine the remaining design questions to address this major public health concern for the longer term.

Keywords: antibiotic, delinkage, resistance

Suggested Citation

Outterson, Kevin and Gopinathan, Unni and Clift, Charles and So, Anthony and Morel, Chantal and Røttingen, John-Arne, Delinking Investment in Antibiotic Research and Development from Sales Revenues: The Challenges of Transforming a Promising Idea into Reality (June 14, 2016). Boston Univ. School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 16-25. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2795774 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2795774

Kevin Outterson (Contact Author)

Boston University School of Law ( email )

765 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
United States

Unni Gopinathan

Norwegian Institute of Public Health ( email )

PO Box 4404
Nydalen, N-0403
Oslo
Norway

Charles Clift

Centre on Global Health Security - Chatham House ( email )

10 St James's Square
London, SW1Y 4LE
United Kingdom

Anthony So

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health ( email )

615 N. Wolfe Street
Baltimore, MD 21205
United States

Chantal Morel

McGill University ( email )

1001 Sherbrooke St. W
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1G5
Canada

John-Arne Røttingen

Norwegian Knowledge Center for the Health Services ( email )

Norway

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