Intended for healthcare professionals


Poor countries should use flexibility in global trade agreement to improve access to antiretrovirals, says report

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 16 March 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d1677
  1. John Zarocostas

    Low income countries can use flexibility in the global trade accord that oversees intellectual property rights to improve patients’ access to antiretrovirals by making cheaper generic drugs more available, says a new United Nations briefing paper.

    “The use of these policy options and other flexibilities can . . . help to increase supply and availability of necessary medicines,” says the policy brief, which was compiled by UNAIDS (the joint UN programme on HIV and AIDS), the World Health Organization, and the UN Development Programme.

    The report notes that greater availability of generic antiretrovirals has reduced the annual price of treatment per person by nearly 99% over the past decade, from more than $10 000 (£6200; €7200) in 2000 to less than $120 in …

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