Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Fake drug progess in Kenya! and compulsory licensing

Kenya's Daily Nation reports that efforts to curb counterfeit drugs in the region are bearing fruit alongside some disturbing news about how Kenyans are being diagnosed with incorrect drugs:

"The minister [Medical Services minister Anyang’ Nyong’o], however, said counterfeit drugs were no longer a big problem in the country because of a cross-border effort to reduce their prevalence."

“Working closely with the police, CID and Interpol in these countries, we have been able to reduce significantly the prevalence of fake drugs,” says Chief Government Pharmacist Kipkerich Koskei.

Afro Leo wonders whether just the one significant push against counterfeit drugs (see Afro-IP post here) has made that much impact or whether there is indeed a glimmer of light. Perhaps readers will comment below.

Meanwhile Alec van Gelder has written in to Afro Leo defending his article in the WSJ reported here and informing us of a paper that will be published soon explaining in more detail his position.

Alec has also directed us to this article published just recently: Epstein, Richard A. and Kieff, F. Scott, Questioning the Frequency and Wisdom of Compulsory Licensing for Pharmaceutical Patents (August 17, 2010). U of Chicago Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 527. Available at SSRN: :

"Any need to help poor people gain access should not rely on CL, but instead should rely on tools precisely aimed at that purpose, including direct government purchases of patented drugs from their manufacturers at negotiated prices."

Thanks Alec.

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