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Public Health Groups See Major Step but Concerns on Safeguards



A number of public health groups including Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM), Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF, Doctors Without Borders) Access Campaign, Public Citizen, and the Global TB Community Advisory Board (TB CAB) in a press release said it was a major step, but voiced concerns about what they see as a lack of safeguards.

The agreement between the MPP and Johns Hopkins University marks the first open license for a TB drug held by a US university, and the first open license for a TB drug through the MPP, they underlined in the release.

UAEM Executive Director Merith Basey commended Johns Hopkins “for shifting its stance to prioritize a public health-driven path for the development of this lifesaving drug, and we call on similar leading universities to leverage their significant role in ensuring future access and affordability of medicines such as this one for people worldwide.”

While underlining that the agreement is a “major step forward,” the groups voiced concerns that the “deal contains no strong safeguards to ensure that any treatments developed will be made affordable for all the people who need them.”

“This agreement has the potential to greatly improve current treatment options, but it can only be truly effective if the treatments created are made accessible to people living with TB everywhere,” said Judit Rius Sanjuan, US manager & legal policy adviser at MSF’s Access Campaign, according to the release.

“Public health groups are advocating for a single affordable global price for any treatment brought to market through this deal,” they said.

Source: http://www.ip-watch.org/2017/01/25/medicines-patent-pool-tb-deal-praised-but-raises-concerns-of-affordability