Bidil: Race Medicine or Race Marketing?

9 Pages Posted: 26 Oct 2005

See all articles by Pamela Sankar

Pamela Sankar

University of Pennsylvania - Perelman School of Medicine

Jonathan D. Kahn

Northeastern University - School of Law; Northeastern University - Center for Law, Innovation and Creativity

Abstract

Recent Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of the first drug with a race-specific indication has fueled the controversy over the meaning of race and ethnicity and raised questions over whether this move should be seen as an advance or a setback in the struggle to address disparities in health status associated with race. The drug, BiDil, combines two generics long recognized as benefiting patients with heart failure, irrespective of race or ethnicity. The push to bring these drugs to market as a race-specific treatment was motivated by the peculiarities of U.S. patent law and a willingness to exploit race to gain commercial and regulatory advantage.

Keywords: Business of Health, Consumer Issues, Demography, Ethical Issues, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Minority Health, Pharmaceuticals

JEL Classification: D40, I11, I18, K10, K23, L65

Suggested Citation

Sankar, Pamela and Kahn, Jonathan D., Bidil: Race Medicine or Race Marketing?. Health Affairs, October 11, 2005, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=825645

Pamela Sankar

University of Pennsylvania - Perelman School of Medicine ( email )

423 Guardian Drive
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

Jonathan D. Kahn (Contact Author)

Northeastern University - School of Law ( email )

416 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
United States

Northeastern University - Center for Law, Innovation and Creativity

416 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
United States

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