Europe’s drug companies are better than those in US in making drugs accessible to poor countries

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: (Published 19 June 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:1396
  1. Andrew Jack
  1. 1Financial Times

Drug companies in Europe do more to make drugs available and affordable to the world’s poor countries than their counterparts in the United States or Japan, concludes a new type of assessment of company policies.

The Access to Medicines Index (, a Dutch foundation established by Wim Leereveld, a former marketing consultant to the drug industry, tries to strip away the public relations rhetoric to quantify and compare meaningful corporate contributions.

Top ranked is GlaxoSmithKline, the UK based company that has been involved in researching a range of new treatments for diseases in the developing world. It also offers “tiered” pricing to sell drugs at large discounts to low income …

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