On Thursday, May 21, 2015, KEI and KEI Europe hosted a side event at the 68th World Health Assembly on compulsory licensing of patents on drugs, vaccines, and diagnostic tests. The event was graciously hosted by UNAIDS in the Kofi Annan room.
The TPP, following a plethora of other trade agreements involving the United States, the European Union and Japan as trading partners, seeks to expand and extend drug monopolies, by requiring lower standards for the grant of patents, extensions of patent terms, exclusive rights in test data, among other measures. These proposals and polices are designed to have the predictable effect of making drug prices higher.
On Tuesday, 26 May 2015, the following statement was delivered in Committee B of the 68th World Health Assembly on behalf of Stichting Health Action International and Knowledge Ecology International on the topic: Follow-up to the 2014 high-level meeting of the United Nations General Assembly to undertake a comprehensive review and assessment of the progress achieved in the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases.
On Monday, 18 May 2015, the Greek Minister of Health, Panagiotis Kouroumplis, delivered the following speech at the World Health Assembly in Geneva, explicitly calling for the de-linkage of the “cost of R&D from the final price of medicines” while highlighting the deleterious effects of austerity measures eroding public health systems, counter to the theme of WHA68, “Resilient Health Systems”.
Here is his speech in full:
Madam Director General, dear colleagues, excellencies, ladies and gentlemen
Attached is the text of a letter sent by Senator Bernie Sanders to Robert A. McDonald, the Secretary, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, asking the Secretary “to use your authority as Secretary of Veterans Affairs to break the patents on Hepatitis C medications for the treatment of veterans suffering with the disease.”
To prepare for the upcoming 68th World Health Assembly (WHA), the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services held a Stakeholder Listening Session on Friday, May 8, 2015, from 10:30am – 12pm in the HHS Humphrey Building – 200 Independence Ave, SW, Washington, DC 20201. All Agenda items for the upcoming WHA are here:
http://apps.who.int/gb/ebwha/pdf_files/WHA68/A68_1-en.pdf Continue Reading →
On Friday May 8, 2015, the US Department of Health and Human Services held a listening session to solicit input on the agenda items for the upcoming 68th World Health Assembly. KEI delivered five interventions covering a range of critical WHA topics. The full provisional agenda of the 68th WHA can be accessed here.